All About Turkey

Ardahan

Ardahan, which was previously the town of the province of Kars, 101 kilometers northeast, is a new province (made in 1992) of Turkey in the Eastern Anatolian Region. It's a small province with around 107 thousand inhabitants (2012). The city stands on a high mountain plateau and 70% of the population lives on the countryside, so agriculture is the main economy in Ardahan. Carpet and Kilim weaving holds an important place amongst young girls here. There are many small rivers and lakes around the city; Cildir lake for instance is the second biggest in the whole region, at an altitude of 1,959 meters above the sea level.

Standing on flatland, this small city is a lovely spot with beautiful natural surroundings, and it has been the home of many civilizations dating far back to antiquity. The oldest written document from its past is a stone inscription from Urartu's nearby Cildir lake. We also know that Cimmerians settled in this area as well around 8th century BC. In 1069 AD the town was captured by the Seljuk sultan Alparslan, than in 1551 by the Ottomans.

Ardahan fortressIt is possible to find reminders of Ardahan's past everywhere over the land, the most important monumental figure being the ancient fortress is Ardahan Fortress which was built by the Seljuk and used by the Ottomans later on. Other important castles in Ardahan province are; Kazan, Altas, Kinzi, Kalecik, Seytan, Kurt, Sevimli, Cak, Savasir, Mere, Kol, Kirnak, Olcev, Dedesen, Karakale, Kislahanak, and Hanak.

Ugurludag in Yalnizcam village, 12 kilometers to the center, has a small skiing track built recently, where one can ski for approximately 6 months thanks to its climate.

Many festivals are organized in the city, such as; Honey festival (beginning of August), Yellow Cheese festival (beginning of July), Cildir Lake festival (in Spring), and so on.

All About Turkey © Burak Sansal 1996–2014, a certified professional tour guide in Turkey. Contact Burak at buraksan@superonline.com for all kinds of regular and/or private travel services throughout the country.