About the city:
Ankara is the capital of Turkey and the country’s second largest city after İstanbul. The city has a population around 4.5 million, it goes up to 5.5 million including the provinces.
The city of Ankara lies in the center of Anatolia on the eastern edge of the great, high Anatolian Plateau, at an altitude of 850 meters (2800 ft). The province is a predominantly fertile wheat steppe land, with forested areas in the northeast. It is bordered by the provinces of Çankırı and Bolu to the north, Eskişehir to the west, Konya and Aksaray to the south, and Kırıkkale and Kırşehir to the east.
Centrally located in Anatolia, Ankara is an important commercial and industrial city. It is the center of the Turkish Government, and houses all foreign embassies. It is an important crossroads of trade, strategically located at the center of Turkey’s highway and railway networks, and serves as the marketing center for the surrounding agricultural area.
The city was famous for its long-haired Angora goat and its prized wool (mohair), a unique breed of cat (Angora cat), white rabbits and their prized wool (Angora wool), pears, honey, and the region’s muscat grapes.
History of a city: “Cross road of civilizations: Ankara”
It was formerly known as Angora. The Hittites gave it the name Ankuwash before 1200 BC, the Galatians and Romans called it Ancyra, and in the classical, Hellenistic, and Byzantine periods it was known as Ἄγκυρα Ánkyra. Ankara also serves as the capital of the Province of Ankara.
The region’s history goes back to the Bronze Age Hatti civilization, which was succeeded in the 2nd millennium B.C by the Hittites, in the 10 th century B.C by the Phrygians, then by the Lydians and Persians. After these came the Galatians,.a Celtic race who were the first to make Ankara their capital in the 3rd century B.C It was then known as Ancyra, meaning “anchor,” one of the oldest words in the language of the sea-loving Celts.
The city subsequently fell to the Romans, and to the Byzantines. Seljuk Sultan Alparslan opened the door into Anatolia for theTurks at the victory of Malazgirt in 1071. Then in 1073, he annexed Ankara, an important locatian for military transportatian and natural resources, to Turkish territory.
The city was an important cultural, trading, and arts center in Roman times, and an important trading center on the caravan route to the east in Ottoman times. It had declined in importance by the nineteenth century. It again became an important center when Kemal Atatürk chose it as the base from which to direct the War of Liberation. By consequence of its role in the war and its strategic position, it was declared the capitalaf the new Republic of Turkey on October 13th, 1923.
This plateau was also a cradle of human civilization. At Çatalhöyük, remains of settlements as old as the eighth millennium B.C. have been unearthed. Here in the homeland of many civilizations and the historic battleground between East and West, the Hatti’s, Hittites, Phrygians, Galatians, Romans, Byzantines, Seljuk’s and Ottomans all fought for their sovereignty and established their rule. In the 11th century, migrating Turks from the east made the plateau their own. During its turbulent history, Central Anatolia has endured invasion by great conquerors, such as Alexander the Great and Tamerlane.
In the course of ten millennia of habitation, the denizens of the area have reflected in their art the dramatic contours of the surrounding landscape, from the vigorous paintings of Çatalhöyük and the confident lines of Seljuk architecture, to, more recently, the impressive modern form of Atatürk’s mausoleum.
Ankara is the capital city of the Republic of Turkey. The city – which was once known as Angora and Ancyra – is the second largest city in Turkey by population, trailing only behind Istanbul. The city’s urban center boasts a population of 4,587,558, while the province itself has a population of over 5.4 million.
The Ankara lies on 874m above sea level The climate is warm and temperate in Ankara. The winters are rainier than the summers in Ankara. This climate is considered to be Csa according to the Köppen-Geiger climate classification. The average annual temperature in Ankara is 11.6 °C | 52.9 °F. The rainfall here is around 383 mm | 15.1 inch per year.
Address : Türk Ocağı Cad. Opera
Phone : +90 (312) 3119556
The Ethnography Museum is at the opposite the Opera House on Talat Paşa Boulevard. There is a fine collection of folkloric artifacts and artifacts of Seljuk and Ottoman mosques. Open every day, except Monday
Museum of Anatolian Civilizations
Address : Kadife Sokak Ankara Kalesi
Phone : +90 (312) 3243160
The Museum of Anatolian Civilizations is close to the citadel entrance. An old bedesten (covered bazaar) has been beautifully restored and currently housing a marvelous and unique collection of Paleolithic, Neolithic, Hatti, Hittite, Phrygian, Urartian, and Roman works and exhibits the pieces Lydian treasures. Open every day, except Monday. During the summer time the museums is open everyday.
Mehmet Akif Ersoy Old House & Museum
Address : Hacettepe University Campus, Sıhhiye
Phone : +90 (312) 3052144
Mehmet Akif Ersoy Museum, on the Hacettepe University Central Campus, commemorates the famous national poet who wrote the text of the Turkish national anthem as well as songs of independenee, and many other poems. open weekdays from 10 am – 12 pm and 2 pm – 4 pm.
Şefik Bursalı Museum & House
Address : A. Mithat Efendi S. N:36/3 Çankaya
Phone : +90 (312) 4412390
Address : Yassıhöyük Köyü Polatlı
Phone : +90 (312) 6214422
Address : ODTÜ Kampüsü
Phone : +90 (312) 2101000
METU Museum is on the campus of Middle East Technieal University. It has archeological artifacts and ethnographic displays. Open weekdays, 9:30 am to 3:30 pm.
Address : Çankırı Cad. Dışkapı
Phone : +90 (312) 3107280
The bath, situated on Çankırı Avenue in Ulus, features: a frigidarium (cold room), tepidarium (cool room) and caldarium (hot room).
They were built in the time of Emperor Caracalla (3rd century A.D.) in honour of Asclepios, the god of medicine. Today only the basement and the first floor are remained.
Ahi Elvan Mosque
Found in the Ulus quarter near
the Citadel, this mosque was built and finished during the Iate 14th and early 15th centuries. The finely carved walnut mimber (pulpit) is of special interest.
This mosque is inside the Citadel walls. It has a carved walnut mimber, the inscription on which shows that the mosque was built in the 12th century by the Seljuk ruler, Mesut.
This Seljuk mosque, near the citadel, was built in the 13th century. The mosque has a mihrap (prayer niche showing the direction to Mecca) of Seljuk tiles, and an unusual double colonnade of wooden columns. Next to the mosque is the tomb of Ahi Şerafeddin.
Atatürk’s House is on the grounds of the Presidential Palace in Çankaya and was Atatürk’s house after the Republic is found. The house is much as it was in Atatürk’s day, and exhibits photographs that recordings of important events of his life time. Open Sundays and on religious and national holidays, 1:30 pm to 5:00 pm.
Address : İstanbul Highway 12th km. Etimesgut
Phone : +90 (312) 2248550
The Aviation Museum, located in Etimesgut, displays various small and large scale models, aircrafts, and photographs. Open everyday, except Monday and Tuesday
The Cartography Museum, located in the Harita Genel Komutanlığı (General Mapping Directorate) building in the Cebeci quarter, has old and new maps. open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 am – 12 pm and 2 pm – 5 pm.
Column of Julian
This column, in Ulus, was built in 362 A.D., probably to commemorate a visit by the Roman Emperor Julian the Apostate. It stands fifteen meters high and has a typical leaf decoration on the capital.
The Education Museum follows the history and technology of education in Turkey. It is located in Ankara Gazi University, in the Beşevler district. open on weekdays
Museum of Aviation Studies
Address : Çankırı Cad. Dışkapı
Phone : +90 (312) 3107280
Hacı Bayram Mosque
This mosque, in Ulus, next to the Temple of Augustus, was built in the early 15th century in Seljuk style and was subsequently restored by Sinan in the 16th century, with Kütahya tiles being added in the 18th century. The mosque was built in honor of Hacı Bayram Veli, whose tomb is next to the mosque.
Erected in the 1970’s in Sıhhiye Square, this impressive monument symbolizes the Hatti gods and commemorates Anatolia’s earliest known civilization.
This is a recently constructed mosque of great size in classical Ottoman design with four minarets. Built between 1967 and 1987 in the Kocatepe quarter, its size and prominent situation have made it a landmark.
Liberation War Museum
The Liberation War Museum, diagonally across the street from Ulus Square, is in the original form where the first parliament building of the Republic of Turkey was. Here the War of Liberation was planned and directed. There are various photographs and items on exhibition where you can view how it was during those times. There are also wax figures of the former presidents’ of the Republic of Turkey. Open every day, except Monday.
The Meteorology Museum on Sanatoryum Avenue in Kalaba, shows the history of meteorology and its studies in Turkey. open during the weekdays.
Monument of the Republic
Build in 1927 in Ulus Square. It is a symbol of the struggle for independence on the part of Atatürk and the Turkish people in the War of Liberation.
Monument to a Secure, Confident Future
Monument to a Secure, Confident Future: This monument, in Güven Park, was erected in 1935 and bears Atatürk’s advice to the nation of Turks: “Be proud, hardworking, and believe in yourself.”
Museum of the Republic
The Museum of the Republic, close to the Liberation War Museum, is hosted by the the second parliament building of the Republic. Archive of the important events in the early republican period are displayed here. Open every day, except Monday.
Natural History Museum
The Natural History Museum can be found on the grounds of the MTA (Mineral Research and Exploration Institute) on the Eskişehir road in Ankara. The displays record the evolutionary development of the world. Open every day except religious holidays.
Painting and Sculpture Museum
The Painting and Sculpture Museum is close to the Ethnography Museum. It houses a rich collection of Turkish art which dates back to the Iate 19th century. There are also galleries for guest exhibitions. Open every day, except Monday.
The remains, including pro-scene (stage), and scene (backstage), can be seen outside the citadel. Roman statues that were found here are exhibited in the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations. The audience area is still under excavation.
Temple of Augustus
The temple is in the Ulus quarter of the city. It was built by the Galatian King Pylamenes in 10 AD. as a tribute to Augustus, and was reconstructed by the Romans on the ancient Ankara Acropolis in the 2nd century. lt is important today for the “Monument Ancyranum,” the sole surviving “Political Testament” of Augustus, detailing his achievements, inscribed on its walls in Latin and Greek. In the 5th century the temple was converted into a church by the Byzantines.
The TRT Museum (Turkish Radio & Television Broadcasting) exhibits the development from the time when radio broadcasting has begun in Turkey, including antique phonographs and radios as well. lt is located in the TRT General Directorate building in the Oran district. open Mon.,Wed., Fri., 11 am – 3 pm.
TCDD open-air Locomotive Museum
The TCDD open-air Locomotive Museum, near the railway station by the Celal Bayar Blvd., shows the history of steam locomotion through the locomotives on display. Open weekdays.
T.C. Ziraat Museum
T.C. Ziraat Museum at the Ulus branch of the bank displays a rich collection of coins and money in a building of architectural beauty. Open weekdays from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm
Museum of Toys
The Toy Museum in Cebeci houses toys of all kinds made of wood, metal, porcelain, paper and more. open Wednesdays and Fridays from 10 am to 5 pm.
Erected in 1927 in Zafer Square at the Sıhhiye quarter. It shows Atatürk in uniform.
Yeni (Cenab Ahmet) Mosque
This is the largest Ottoman mosque in Ankara and was built by the famous architect Sinan in the 16th century. The mimber (pulpit) and mihrap (prayer niche) are of white marble, and the mosque itself is of Ankara stone (red porphyry), an example of very fine workmanship. It is on Ulucanlar Avenue.
You can reach these listed locations in less than an hour by car. Also, there are several tours to these locations from downtown and tourism agencies as well. We advice you to rent a car and have a day trip which will be an adventures fun exploration.
Akyurt is 33 km from the city centre, and was occupied from the Early Bronze Age until the 14th century. A large burial mount 15 meters high and 200-300 meters in diameter was found 1 km northeast of the village of Balikhisar, which is a settlement from the 3rd millenium BC, and belongs to the Early Bronze Age.
Check out various cheap holiday deals to Turkey to visit the fantastic travel spots listed below. You can reach these listed locations in less than an hour by car. Also, there are several tours to these locations from downtown and tourism agencies as well. We advice you to rent a car and have a day trip which will be an adventures fun exploration.
The forest at Beynam National Park, 35 km from Bala on the district border, is an important recreation spot for city residents of Ankara, as well as the locals of Bala.
The Tekke Highlands
The Egriova highlands, 10 km from the town, the lake and geological structures resembling ‘fairy’ chimneys around the village of Dereli, are some of the district’s more interesting sites.
Cubuk is 39 km away from Ankara‘s city centre. The ruins of the castle at Aktepe and the Carved Rock (Oyulu Kaya) grave in the village of Karadana are remains of Hittite settlement. The forest around Cubuk Dam and Lake Karagol are important recreation spots.
The area ruled by the Phrygians, Galatians, Persians, Romans, Byzantines and Selcuks respectively, and it was also an area of some importance during the Ottoman Empire.
The Phrygians, Lydians, Persians and later Romans all ruled in the vicinity of Elmadag, located 41km from the city centre. The motifs and styles of the local hand-woven carpets, rugs, and various bags stretch all the way back to the Selcuk era. Carpet-making still happens in the villages of Tekke and Akcaali, while rugs and handwoven bags still preserve their cultural roots in the villages of Akcaali, Deliler, Hasanoglan, Karacahasan and Kayadibi.
The district of Etimesgut is 20 km away from Ankara center. The historical Gazi Train Station and the Etimesgut Train Station, which was used by Ataturk on his travels to and from Istanbul, are both interesting sites. Ahi Mes’ud and Ahi Elvan, both great important people, named this district and Ahi Elvan’s Tomb is found in the courtyard of the Elvankoy Mosque.
Both the Phrygians and Hittites are known to have had settlements in this area. This area was settled mostly by Turks who immigrated from western Trakya after the declaration of the independent Turkish Republic.
Situated 20 km from Ankara, Golbasi and the surrounding area is important to Ankara in terms of recreation, summer getaway and tourism, as well as hosting important industries. Mogan and Eymir lakes with their natural beauty, clean fresh air and fishing make the area appealing to tourists and locals.
The villages in this area all have a fascinating historical background, with many sites worth seeing. The tumuluses and artifacts found in the villages of Selametli, Gokcehoyuk and Bezirhane; the Roman burial sites and columns in the village of Taspinar; the Byzantine coins and artifacts found in Karaoglan; and the remains of churches belonging to the early Christian period in the villages of Yurtbeyi and Karaoglan.
Haymana’s thermal springs, 73 km from Ankara, are world-famous and were used even as far back as the Hittites. After the Hittites, the thermal spring facilities were repaired during the Roman era; and a town, whose remainings can still be seen, was founded 1.5 km east of Haymana and eventually became a therapy centre.
Situated 71 km from Ankara, Kalecik is believed to have first been inhabited in the early Chalcolithic Period between 3500-4000 BC. Notable historic sites in the district include the Hasbey, Saray and Tabakhane Mosques, the Tombs of Kazancibaba and Alisoglu, the Develioglu Bridge spanning the Kizilirmak River and Kalecik Castle.
Kazan is 45km from the city centre. Excavations have uncovered a number of historical artifacts demonstrating that the area has been used by number of different civilizations for settlement.
Situated 83 km from Ankara, Kizilcahamam is the most heavily forested town in the province. The Sey Hamami thermal springs, 16km from Kizilcahamam, have rich mineral waters which are among the most important thermal springs in the country.
The village of Yassihoyuk and the surrounding area, which lies 20 km northwest of the present-day Polatli, can truly to considered a birthplace of history. There are 86 tumuluses and royal burial sites in the area, as well as numerous artifacts from the city.
Polatli, 78km from Ankara, was established around 3000 BC but its centre then Gordion and the surrounding area, which was the largest Phrygian city in the world. Gordion was ruled in succession by the Hittites, Phrygians, Persians, Romans and Byzantines, and was added to the Ottoman Empire in 1516 by Yavuz Sultan Selim.
How to get
Ankara Esenboğa International Airport (ESB) is located some 28 km northeast of the city. International flights are rather low in frequency and scope – apart from Turkish Airlines (THY), Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines and British Airways offer direct flights to their respective European hubs. Iran Air also has two weekly flights to Tehran. For other carriers flying into Turkey, a flight into Istanbul is necessary, followed by an air transfer to Ankara by Turkish Airlines or Anadolu Jet (a low cost brand of Turkish Airlines). For purchasing the cheapest air fare we would definitely advise that two web sites: tatiliks.com ucuzucakbiletisorgulama.com
The brand-new airport terminal was opened in 2007. It features many more gates, a more orderly parking system, and in general, better traffic flow. The road connecting Ankara’s airport to the ring road has also been fully renovated.
Airport buses are operated by Belko Air, who operate a fleet of modern coaches. The bus number is 442 and it stops at multiple locations including Aşti (where intercity buses depart), Kızılay (the city centre) and Ulus (the historical center of the city, close to the museums and baths). The price is 8 TL. Bus 442 runs in a loop and buses depart frequently (roughly every 20 minutes). It is possible to take this bus from any of its stops back to the airport. Tickets can be bought on the bus after boarding. Note that announcements are made only in Turkish and you may not find any English-speaking staff. This is the most economic way of reaching the city center, after which you can take a taxi. A taxi drive from the airport to the city center should cost around 60 to 80 TL, depending on your destination.
Being in a central location in Turkey, Ankara is also the centre of the Turkish rail network and can be reached from many cities. There are now high speed services to Istanbul and Konya. The new high speed train from Istanbul to Ankara takes around 3 hours and 30 minutes. Services are currently leaving from Pendik station, which is a suburb on the Asian side of Istanbul reachable by bus from Kadikoy (1 hour) or taxi from Kartal metro station (10m). The price is 70 TL.
High speed trains also run frequently during the day to Eskisehir and Konya, and both destinations take less than 1 and a half hours, allowing day trips from Ankara.
All trains are operated by Turkish State Railways.
The train station is located north of Kızılay Square, which it is connected to by a wide number of public buses which stop at right in front of the station. About 10 minutes walk, on the other side of Gençlik Park, is Ulus metro station which has services to a number of central locations in the city in addition to Kızılay.
Some popular destinations include:
|Istanbul (Pendik)||3:30||TL 70||(High Speed Rail)|
|Eskisehir||1:28||TL 20||Direct (High Speed Rail)|
|Konya||1:30||TL 25||Direct (High Speed Rail)|
|Konya||1:45||TL 22||Direct (High Speed Rail)|
If you are traveling from places other than Istanbul, you will find buses fast, inexpensive, and modern.
The buses terminate at the bus station (otogar) named AŞTİ (pronounced ush-tee and almost exclusively known as such locally; Ankara Şehirlerarası Terminal İşletmeleri) standing for “Ankara Intercity Terminal”. Most of the cities in Turkey have direct buses to the capital of Turkey, and buses are much faster than trains in Turkey. From Istanbul to Ankara, the bus trip takes around 5 hours and one way fare is about 35 TL. Hundreds of companies operate buses to anywhere in Turkey. The companies with bigger ticket desks in AŞTİ are most of the time more convenient, but more expensive.
AŞTİ is connected to the Kızılay Square and a number of other central locations by a metro line. There are also free of charge shuttle buses to Kızılay (and a number of other locations) run by the AŞTİ administration. They depart from behind the main building.
How to get around
The city has a dense public bus network, a two-line subway called Ankara Metrosu and a single line suburban railway called Ankara Banliyö Treni.
For tourists, Ankara’s public transit system, particularly the public bus network, can be difficult to figure out, because maps are rare and all information is in Turkish. Nor is there any access provided for disabled travellers in any form of public transport. Buses and metros tend to be very crowded during rush hours, especially on Mondays and Fridays.
If you know the city well, public transportation, especially the metro, is an ideal, easy, quick and cheap way to get around particularly for longer distances. For shorter distances taxis are an easy, quick and cheap way to get around.
There are two types of public buses in Ankara; those run by the Ankara Municipality named Ankara Belediye Otobüsleri (EGO) and those run by a private corporation named Ankara Özel Halk Otobüsleri (ÖHO). You can differentiate these two types by their colors. EGO-run buses are white and blue while ÖHO-run buses are blue. Both types of these public buses use the same bus network and bus stops.
Ankara Municipal Buses
The Ankara Municipal Buses, named Ankara Belediye Otobüsleri (EGO), consists of an extensive and dense bus network, and is owned and operated by the Ankara Municipality.
Payment system for municipal buses is based on multi-use magnetic cards which is also used for the metro; starting from the smallest available which is the 2-unit cards which cost 3.50 TL, 3-unit cards which cost 5.25 TL, 5-unit cards which cost 8.75 TL, 10-unit cards which cost 17.50 TL and 20-unit cards which cost 35.00 TL. Transfer with the magnetic cards is possible within a duration of 45 minutes between the bus lines and metro lines with a cost of 0.59 TL . The magnetic cards cannot be purchased in buses and have to be purchased beforehand at kiosks and metro stations.
Unfortunately, no stops and maps are displayed in the buses and bus stops nor announced by voice in the buses. However, there is a Turkish web site which can be used to plan bus trips ahead of time. The site can be partially translated using Google translator.
Ankara Non-Municipal Public Buses
The Ankara Non-Municipal Public Buses, Ankara Özel Halk Otobüsleri (ÖHO), consists of an extensive and dense bus network, operated by a private corporation.
Payment system for non-municipal buses is with cash. The ticket, which is only a one-way ticket, is purchased in buses at a cost of 2.40 TL.
Unfortunately, no stops and maps are displayed in the buses and bus stops nor announced by voice in the buses.
Dolmuş are private run minibuses. They are as common as buses and run on their specific routes. Guven Park at Kizilay Square is the main stop of dolmuş’s, running all sides of central Ankara. You can get in and out anywhere on their route, and they stop the same way you catch a taxi with your hand. The prices range depending on your departure point and destination, but typically not more than a two to three liras.
The Ankara Metro, named Ankara Metrosu, consists of three (four, if you count Batıkent-OSB Törekent as a separate line) metro lines, which are called Ankaray and Ankara Metro which is owned and operated by the Ankara Municipality.
The west-east light-rail line named Ankaray and the north-south heavy-rail Ankara Metro line are both mostly underground lines and intersect at Kızılay station.Currently,it is possible to go all stations with one payment.
The Ankaray line runs between AŞTİ (Ankara Şehirlerarası Terminal İşletmesi – Ankara Intercity Bus Terminal) and Dikimevi. The line is 8.7 km long (8.0 underground and 0.7 km surface railway) and has 11 stations.Except Emek station,all stations are under the ground.
The Ankara Metro consists of three lines (M1-M3). M1 Line (Kızılay-Batıkent) is 14 km long and it has 12 stations.In Feb 2014,M3 line opened as an extension. M2 Line (Kızılay-Koru) has 11 stations and it’s 16 km. Ironically,this line has a station named MTA (company who runs New York Subway) M3 Line (Batıkent-OSB Törekent)opened as an extension to M2 line.To reach this line from M2,leave the train (came from Kızılay)in Batıkent and move to other track.
Payment for the subway is based on multi-use magnetic cards which is also used for the municipal buses; starting from the smallest available which is the 2-unit cards which cost 3.50 TL, 3-unit cards which cost 5.25 TL, 5-unit cards which cost 8.75 TL, 10-unit cards which cost 17.50 TL and 20-unit cards which cost 35.00 TL. Transfer with the magnetic cards is possible within a duration of 75 minutes between the bus lines and metro lines with a cost of 0.67 TL. The magnetic cards can be purchased at kiosks and metro stations.
All stations are announced both on a display (in newer trains used in M2 and M3)and by voice in the metros.
Ankara Suburban Railway
The Ankara Suburban Railway, named Ankara Banliyö Treni, consists of a single suburban line running on the national rail network which is owned and operated by the Turkish State Railways.
The suburban line, runs between Sincan in the west, through the city center, to Kayaş in the east. The line is 37.0 km long (all of which is surface and elevated railway) and has 26 stations. No points of interest for visitors in these suburban destinations.
Payment for the subway is done by cash at each train station for a one-way ticket which costs 1.70 TL and a return ticket which costs 3.00 TL .
Taxis are numerous in Ankara and are recognizable by their yellow color and word Taksi on top of the car. All licensed taxis have the letter T in their license plates.
The fare shown on the meter reads according to distance traveled. The ride will start at 2.20 TL, and the rate is 1.90 TL per kilometer. The rates for day and night are same. Tipping is not done.
Occasionally, some taxi drivers will refuse to start the meter and try to negotiate a fixed price, especially with tourists. But most taxi drivers will start taximeters at all times. You should avoid these cabs and simply take another one as you will almost certainly end paying too much. Many taxi drivers, even though very few of them speak a foreign language, will understand your requested destination and instructions. Tell them then to put the taximeter on. Taxi drivers do normally work with the taximeter, so they will not be surprised at all when you ask them to put it on. Emphasize to the taxi driver that you will pay for the meter price before getting in.
Always try to stop a taxi that is passing by on the road or find a legitimate taxi stop.
If you are not familiar with the city and see that you are a tourist, the taxi driver may drive a detour in order to charge you more. Insist on going to the destination that you want, and have a map to show them your destination, to avoid a detour.
Also beware that all taxis are required to have the designated license plate with the letter T apart from their yellow coloring.
Be careful on what notes you hand them for payment; some taxi drivers have tried to pretend that the 50 lira note that was handed was just a 5 lira note. Occasionally taxi drivers may actually also rip notes you give them, and tell you it is no good, in order to make you hand them a 50 lira note. So, make sure the notes are not ripped, and is actually the right one before you hand them over. Do not buy their quick-sell tricks and also do not allow them to round the price up to the higher denomination.
Where to eat
Turkish cuisine which has inherited the Ottoman heritage could be described as a fusion and refinement of Turkic, Arabic, Greek, Armenian and Persian cuisines. Ottomans fused various culinary traditions of their realm with influences from Middle Eastern cuisines, along with traditional Turkic elements from Central Asia such as yogurt. The Ottoman Empire indeed created a vast array of technical specialities. It can be observed that various regions of the Ottoman Empire contain bits and pieces of the vast Ottoman dishes.
Taken as a whole, Turkish cuisine is not homogenous. Aside from common Turkish specialities which can be found throughout the country, there are also region-specific specialities. The Black Sea region’s cuisine (northern Turkey) is based on corn and anchovies. The southeast—Urfa, Gaziantep and Adana—is famous for its kebabs, mezes and dough-based desserts such as baklava, kadayıf and künefe. Especially in the western parts of Turkey, where olive trees are grown abundantly, olive oil is the major type of oil used for cooking. The cuisines of the Aegean, Marmara and Mediterranean regions display basic characteristics of Mediterranean cuisine as they are rich in vegetables, herbs and fish. Central Anatolia is famous for its pastry specialities such as keşkek (kashkak), mantı (especially of Kayseri) and gözleme.
The name of specialities sometimes includes the name of a city or a region (either in Turkey or outside). This suggests that a dish is a speciality of that area, or may refer to the specific technique or ingredients used in that area. For example, the difference between Urfa kebab and Adana kebab is the use of garlic instead of onion and the larger amount of hot pepper that kebab contains.
Restaurants in Ankara
Address: Gaziosmanpaşa – ANKARA
Phone: +90 312 448 29 90
Kebabıstan has served to the citizens of Ankara for more than 50 years, with its delicious kebabs.
Çalgan Meat Restaurant
Address: Alacaatlı Köyü Girişi ÇAYYOLU
Phone: +90 312 239 12 70
A place where you can get rid of the mass in the city. Chill in the nature and have the tasty food at this meat restaurant.
Fige Restaurant /Cafe /Bar
Address: Abdullah Cevdet Sokak No:15 Çankaya, Ankara
Phone: +90 312 438 07 21
Where you can find various types of World tastes and enjoy your time at the same time.
Address: Emek 4. C. 159/14 Bahçelievler Çankaya / ANKARA
Phone: +90 312 222 99 33
Serves Italian and American food. Live music in the garden. Tables on the roof and by the fire place can be reserved.
Le Chalet – Etap Garden
Address: GMK BULVARI NO: 151, TANDOĞAN ANKARA 06570
Phone: +90 312 231 77 77
Great place and delicious food.
Saki Restaurant / Bar
Address: Sancak Mah. 259. sok. No:1/8 Çankaya Ankara
Phone: +90 312 439 08 80
Located in downtown, however it has an amazing country side setup with various delicious food.
Address: Gaziosmanpaşa Mah. Reşit Galip Cad. No: 89/2 06700 Çankaya / ANKARA
Phone: +90 312 436 80 88
Serves the best pasta in town. If you think you had pasta before, try this place, we bet you are going to like it. Enjoy your meal!
Address: Selanik 2 Cad. No: 70 Kızılay Ankara
Phone: +90 312 417 05 50
Since 1972 located in one of the most interesting parts of the city. After the restoration of the Mahmud Nedim Zabri Villa, the restaurant gained its characteristic final appearance, where you can relax and enjoy your time.
Address: Nenehatun C 87 1 Çankaya / ANKARA
Phone: +90 312 447 37 86
With its ancient style, Agora restaurant is one of the most popular restaurants in town. Side dishes and appetizers which are prepared by Cretan cooks are the special dishes of the restaurant. Various types of sea food is served with special cigars in A La Carte style.
Address: Arjantin Cad Budak Sok No:6 G.O.P-Ankara
Phone: +90 312 427 85 45
Located in downtown. A nice setup which takes you away from the stressful city streets.
Address: Filistin Cd. No: 35 Gop Ankara
Phone: +90312 447 29 96
Most famous restaurant in town. Serves traditional Turkish food, grilled meat and sea food.
Address: İlkbahar M. Turan Güneş Bulvarı 249. S. 83 Çankaya / ANKARA
Phone: +90 312 490 03 04
Traditional Turkish food and additionally various types of dishes from all around the World are served at the restaurant Gumus Kasik (Silver Spoon).
Address: Cad. Ahenk Sokak No 2 Çankaya Ankara
Phone: +90 312 440 15 47
A special restaurant where you can have your meal during the live piano performance by the famous players who are currently visiting the city.
Modern shopping areas are mostly found in Kızılay, or on Tunalı Hilmi Avenue, including the modern mall of Karum which is located towards the end of the avenue. The Galleria in Ümitköy, Bilkem Cemer, Armada in Söğütözü, Migros Akköprü and CarrefourSA in Batıkent are other modern shopping opportunities.
Visitors to the city usually like to visit the old shops in Çıkrıkçılar Yokuşu near Ulus. The street of copper workers (Bakırcılar Çarşısı) is particularly popular, and many interesting old and new items, not just of copper, can be found here, such as jewelry, carpels, costumes, antiques and embroidery.
The Armada Mall on the highway, the Galleria in Ümitköy, and a huge mall in Bilkent Center offer North American and European style shopping opportunities (these places can be reached following the Eskişehir Highway). There is also the newly expanded Ankamall at the outskirts, on the Istanbul Highway, which houses most of the well-known European brands. This mall is the largest throughout the Ankara region.
ANKA MALL Shopping Center
Phone : +90 (312) 541 12 12
Address : Akköprü / Ankara
Phone : +90 (312) 266 02 10
Address : Ankuva Alışveriş Merkezi Bilkent-Plaza 06530 Bilkent
Phone : +90 (312) 241 15 00
Address : İkinci Bölge Çayyolu Yeni Mahalle
ARMADA Mall & Business Center
Phone : +90 (312) 219 13 19
Address : Eskişehir yolu No:6 A Blok Kat:1 06520 Söğütözü / Ankara
Phone : +90 (312) 266 05 16
Address : Eskişehir Yolu 8.Km. Bilkent
CARREFOURSA Trade Center
Phone : +90 (312) 278 52 00
Address : İstanbul Yolu 12.km Batı Kavşağı Jandarma Karşısı Batıkent
Phone : +90 (312) 397 41 51
Address : İstanbul Yolu Üzeri Macunköy Kavşağı
Phone : +90 (312) 235 04 61
Address : 8. Cadde No:53 Ümitköy
Phone : +90 (312) 467 15 47
Address : Gazi Osman Paşa
Phone : +90 (312) 241 59 93
OPTİMUM Outlet Center
Phone : +90 (312) 280 60 08
Address : Eryaman Ayaş Yolu No:93 06930 Ankara
Phone : +90 (312) 266 03 03
Address : Bilkent Center Eskişehir Yolu 8.Km. Bilkent
Where to stay
Walking up the hill to the citadel gate, you find many interesting shops selling spices, dried fruits, nuts, and all kinds of produce; the selection is huge and very fresh. Modern shopping areas are mostly found in Kızılay, on Tunalı Hilmi Avenue, including the modern mall of Karum, and in the Atakule Tower in Çankaya. From the top of Atakule there is a magnificent view over the whole city. There is also a revolving restaurant where the complete panorama can be enjoyed in a more leisurely fashion. The Galleria in Ümitköy, Bilkem Cemer, Armada in Söğütözü, Migros Akköprü and CarrefourSA in Batıkent are other modern shopping opportunities.
Foreign visitors to Ankara usually like to visit the old shops in Çıkrıkçılar Yokuşu near Ulus, where myriad things ranging from traditional fabrics, hand-woven carpets and leather products can be found at bargain prices. Bakırcılar Çarşısı (Bazaar of Coppersmiths) is particularly popular, and many interesting items, not just of copper, can be found here like jewelry, carpets, costumes, antiques and embroidery. Up the hill to the castle gate, there are many shops selling a huge and fresh selection of spices, dried fruits, nuts, and other produce.
Places to Stay in Downtown
Dedeman Otel Ankara, Merkez
|7 Delux Suit,
10 Suit Room,
2 Accessible Room
1 presidential suit
299 rooms in total
Direct Phone, Minibar, Digital Coded Safety, Wireless Internet, TV, Air Conditioner, Hair Dryer
With its 24 hour full service Dedeman is one of the major hotels in Turkey.
Bilkent & Conference Centre Otel Ankara, Merkez
|1 Delux Suit,
4 Suit Room,
3 Accessible Room
22 Executive Suits
1 presidential suit
7 Connected rooms
117 rooms in total
Swimming Pool – common, Direct Phone, Minibar, Water Boiler, Wireless Internet, TV, Air Conditioner, Hair Dryer, Iron *, Jaccuzi * (/* not in all rooms)
Aktif Metropolitan Otel Ankara, Merkez
|4 Suit Room,
1 Accessible Room
16 Family Suits
96 rooms in total
Direct Phone, Minibar, Water Boiler, Internet, TV – with international channel access, Air Conditioner, Hair Dryer, Bath Phone
|Akar International Otel Ankara, Merkez||Gazi Park Otel Ankara, Merkez|
|Houston Otel Ankara, Merkez||Capital Plaza Otel Ankara, Merkez|
|Best Apart Otel Ankara, Merkez||Esenboğa Airport Otel Ankara, Merkez|
|Midas Otel Ankara, Merkez||Patalya Lakeside Resort Otel
Because of the war in Iraq, most countries in the region are on alert. Turkey is currently not at war with Iraq.
The general security situation throughout Turkey is stable.
The areas where there are high concentration of tourists are well guarded and safe.
Turkish hospitals vary greatly. The new, private hospitals in Ankara and Istanbul have the most modern facilities and equipment, but still may be unable to treat certain serious conditions. Those planning to stay in Turkey should consider bringing a 6-month supply of necessary chronic medications (e.g., heart medications, birth control pills). Not all diagnostic testing (including mammograms) is up to Western standards in smaller towns.
Visiting tourist should check with their insurance company to make sure their health insurance is valid outside of their country.
TRAFFIC SAFETY AND ROAD CONDITIONS
While in a foreign country, travellers may encounter road conditions that differ significantly from those in the Western Europe.
The information below concerning Turkey is provided for general reference only, and may not be totally accurate in a particular location or circumstance. Highways in the southwestern, coastal portion of the country, which is frequented by tourists, are generally in good condition and well maintained.
Turkey customs authorities may enforce strict regulations concerning temporary importation or exportation from Turkey (Items such as antiquities – very broadly defined – or other important artwork and cultural artifacts).
At the time of departure, travelers who purchase such items may be asked to present a receipt from the seller as well as the official museum export certificate required by law.
Smuggling of large quantities of other items, such as cigarettes, out of Turkey is also a punishable offense.
Contact your embassy in Turkey or one of Turkey’s consulates in your city for specific information regarding customs requirements.