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No Turkish city cultivates such a potent mix of culture and history the way Gaziantep does. Visitors who come chiefly for the stunning mosaics excavated from Roman villas in the garrison town of Zeugma (now superbly displayed in the Gaziantep Archaeology Museum) are soon enchanted with the synergy of civilizations that characterizes Antep, as it is fondly known. So synonymous is Turkey with Ottoman cultural values that visitors are surprised at Gaziantep’s vibrant, dynamic ambiance and eastern flavor, especially its deliciously distinctive (and piquant) cuisine. The city is renowned for its production of pistachios, just one of the ...

No Turkish city cultivates such a potent mix of culture and history the way Gaziantep does. Visitors who come chiefly for the stunning mosaics excavated from Roman villas in the garrison town of Zeugma (now superbly displayed in the Gaziantep Archaeology Museum) are soon enchanted with the synergy of civilizations that characterizes Antep, as it is fondly known. So synonymous is Turkey with Ottoman cultural values that visitors are surprised at Gaziantep’s vibrant, dynamic ambiance and eastern flavor, especially its deliciously distinctive (and piquant) cuisine. The city is renowned for its production of pistachios, just one of the products that help to brand it as eastern Anatolia’s engine of economic growth. Despite its contemporary credits, Gaziantep has been continuously inhabited since the Hittite era, 1200-700BC. The Zincirli Tumulus and Sculpture Workshop at nearby Yesemek offers authentic proof of the sophisticated skills and high level of development of the ancient Hittite peoples. Gaziantep’s timeless bazaars and brimming markets showcase its commercial flair, while the lofty citadel rewards the adventurous visitor who treks to the heights. The outstanding Hasan Süzer Ethnographic Museum minutely recreates 19th-century life in Antep. Christian churches and mosques abound and reflect the previous cultural fusion of the city. Animal lovers will delight in the city’s modernized Zoo and Nature Reserve, the largest animal park in Turkey. Check out the historic Tahmis Coffee House and the traditional Turkish baths (hammams) many of which have been beautifully restored.

Suzanne Swan
About the Expert

Suzanne Swan is the main author of DK's Eyewitness Travel Guide Turkey. She updated and wrote original material for DK's Eyewitness Travel Guide Istanbul.

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Suzanne Swan for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Gaziantep previously and still informally called Antep, is a city in southeast Turkey and among the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. The city is located 185 kilometres northeast of Adana and 97 kilometres north of Aleppo, Syria.
  • Language: Turkish
  • Currency: Turkish Lira
  • Research: Wikipedia | Wikitravel

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    May-June and October-November