Trabzon travel guide
If you are looking for a holiday destination steeped in ancient history, drenched in fabulous weather year round, complete with fantastic shopping activities, all surrounded by stunning natural beauty, then you need look no further than the Turkish city of Trabzon.
This ancient city was once the capital of the mighty Trebizond Empire, ruled by the power Kommenos family during the medieval era. Bestowing several emperors to the Byzantine seat of power, the empire was captured by the Ottomans in 1461, nearly ten years after Constantinople fell.
Reading up on your city guide to Trabzon will allow you to understand the many things to do and cultural attractions available in this marvellous city. The number one tourist attraction in Trabzon is the Sumela Monastery. Constructed in the 4th century, it was placed spectacularly on a tapered outcropping on a cliff just a little south of the town. According to legend, two priests from Athens discovered a symbol of the Virgin Mary in a cave nearby and wished to create a monastery dedicated in her honour.
The monastery has managed to survive through the chaos of history but not unscarred. The beautiful frescoes have been vandalised through past travellers as well as several buildings here. Fortunately, the government has embarked on a painstaking reconstruction of the monastery and has now been created into a fantastically interesting museum. For a bit of relaxation after walking around the extensive grounds, enjoy some tea in the garden tea house.
For views that could be transported out of a fairytale, head to Uzungol. This stunning lake is situated at an altitude of 1090 meters. 1000 meters long and 500 meters wide, it was created when numerous rocks fell into the Haldizen stream. Dense forests surround it in all directions and quaint little villages add to the charm and serenity of this area. There are several hiking trails in and around the lake to enjoy as well as providing a great backdrop for a picnic.
For a spot of relaxation after hiking in the forests of Uzungol, visit Boztepe Park. It may not be the largest park you will ever visit, but it is one of the most relaxing and peaceful places you will. With a quaint little tea garden, this park is situated in the hills so gives you outstanding views of the entire city of Trabzon.
You will certainly not go hungry here as there are plenty of restaurants in Trabzon. For an authentic taste of the city, sample a type of bread called Vakfikebir ekmegi. Other regional specialities that shouldn’t be passed up on include pide, kofte and kiymali.
There is a wide selection of hotels in Trabzon, each catering to different levels of comforts and affordability. The cheaper options can be found near the port but this is also the red light district.