Diyarbakir city 777 km (482 mile) to Cappadocia and 1454 km (903 mile) away from Istanbul. Diyarbakir Situated on the banks of Tigris (Dicle), Diyarbakir still carries a medieval air with its walls encircling the city.

These black basalt walls are perfect examples of the military architecture of the Middle Ages. They are also very well known since they are the second largest (5.5 kms) and bestpreserved walls in the world after the famous Great Wall of China. Although there were Roman, and probably earlier walls here, the present walls date back to early Byzantine times. There are sixteen keeps and five gates, each of which deserves seeing along with their inscriptions and relief. There are four main gates along the wall called as Dag Kapi, Urfa Kapi, Mardin Kapi and Yeni Kapi.

You will have the chance to go back to bygone days at the Deliler Han by the Mardin Kapi of the City Walls. Now it is restored as a hotel preserving the original air of the old days when caravan travelers used to stop and rest.

Another fascinating sight in the city center, is the Ulu Mosque, notable for its original architecture and the ancient materials used in the restoration of the building at various times. Nearby the Ulu Mosque is the Mesudiye Medresse and Hasan Pasha Ham, a caravanserai now being used by carpet and souvenir shops. The Nebii Mosque is a typical example of the Ottoman style. The Church of the Virgin Mary is interesting and it is still in use.

The Kasim Padisah Mosque is also interesting, especially due to the engineering which built a large tower upon four tiny pillars about two meters high, called the Dort Ayakli Minare.

The location of noted mythological cave Eshab-ul Keyf, and Dacianus ruins are in the town of Lice. The holy Mount Zulkufil and Hilar Caves are in the town of Ergani. Within the environs of Diyarbakir are the Birkleyn and Hasun Caves, the Antak City ruins and the Cayonu Archaeological Site.

The city holds many mosques and buildings of long historical and archaeological importance. There are four museums in the city center. When you add to those the renowned watermelons of about 40 kilograms approximately, and its silver and copper artifacts Diyarbakir certainly stands as a destination to be visited. Gazi Kosku is a nice place for picnicking.

Food and dining in Diyarbakir is for the most part, a bargain for the western traveler.  There are also many coffee and tea houses where the locals sit for hours, chatting, smoking and drinking teas or coffees.  In the cafés, you can sample the delicious cakes and pastries of Diyarbakir.

The food is delicious in Diyarbakir and you will find the prices are reasonable. Diyarbakir cuisine is a combination of Turkish and Kurdish cuisine. Very popular foods in Diyarbakir include kebabs, their world famous watermelons, Ayran, fresh home made bread and pide and lahmacun (which is a Turkish/Kurdish version of pizza – sort of). The food you will eat in Diyarbakir is delicious and very tasty because it is all organic food – food grown not on corporate farms as in North America, but organically, without chemical pesticides. Good restaurants are; Kuce Basi Et Lokantasi, this outfit has a wide-ranging menu and original setting (the room at the back is designed like a rustic barn). Try innovative dishes like tavuk tava (deep-fried chicken meat in a flat-bottomed pan).Selim Amca’nin Sofra Salonu, This bright eatery outside the city walls is famous for its kaburga dolmasi (lamb stuffed with rice and almonds). Round it off with a devilish Irmik helvasi (a gooey dessert). The sac kavurma (braised lamb) is also excellent. Kebabci Haci Halid, Tasty kebaps and ready-made meals served in bright surroundings. Look for the black-and-white pictures of old Diyarbakir on the 1st floor. It’s in a small pedestrianised side street off Gazi Caddesi. Carsi Konagi, escape the main drag’s commercial buzz at this lovingly restored 450-year old house, now concealing a leafy courtyard and poignant reminders of its former Jewish owners. (Look for the carved Star of David in the wooden ceiling). A wide array of kebaps, grills and salads are on offer, and don’t be surprised if you’re asked to stay for an extended cay session with friendly Diyar locals.

Diyarbakır is rough. At first glance, it seems not a very welcoming city, actually it is the contrary. Lıfe in this city is hard for so many people. It is not advisable at all to walk alone during the night time, especially in the old quarter. Taking some precautions during the visit is advisable, just common sense. Don’t hang around in dark areas; try not to look like the typical tourist, etc.

The main shopping road, Gazi Caddesi, in the old quarter also houses two pricey hotels (one of them being the “Green Park”) what might lead you to expect that the area is safe. Be warned! The lower end of the street toward the Mardin Kapı, the Mardin Gate, is pretty dark and can be dangerous at night. Do not become prey to pickpockets who seem to hang around there. Your life won’t be in danger but your pockets might be emptied more quickly than you can shout Polis! And the narrow alleys quickly turn into a labyrinth when you are under duress. Don’t let this scare you off, just take some precautions.

The modern part of Diyarbakir is very much safer.

There are many clean and reasonably comfortable hotels with air con, etc. There is an engaging hotel in the old han building. Good hotels are; Prestige Hotel, All Star Class Hotel, Dedeman hotel etc.

Districts of Diyarbakir Province

Çermik

Ergani

Bismil

Silvan

We Recommend  : Kairos Travel  |  Unlu Hotel | Captivating Cappadocia
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