The history of Cankiri, which is 131 km from Ankara, goes back to 3000-2500 BC. Here was a Galatian settlement of 3rd century BC, called "Gangrea" at that time. The land has witnessed the hegemony of many tribes thereafter, such as Hittites, Pontus, Romans and Byzantines, up to Seljuks and Ottomans, and the traces from its long past stand all over the area.
There are the ruins of Cankiri Fortress from the 11th century with rock tombs and underground tunnels inside. In the city, the Ulu Mosque dates back to the 16th century, and was built by great Turkish architect Mimar Sinan. Just outside of the city is the Tas Mescit which is a medieval hospital constructed in 1235. There are also several Turkish baths from Ottoman period which are worth seeing.
The archeological and ethnographical works are exhibited together in the exhibition hall of the Cankiri museum, works belonging to Neolithic, Calcolithic, Early Bronze, Hittite, Phrygian, Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine, Seljuk and Ottoman periods are exhibited in the halls. There are terracotta cans, bones, glasses, beads, bronze tools and ornamental goods, tear and essence bottles, medical tools, oil lamps, needles, ring stones and various sculpture parts among the exhibited works. Also various weavings, hand works, calligraphy, print molds, clothes, guns, ornamental tools and various works used in daily life belonging to Cankiri and its surroundings are exhibited in the ethnographical section of the museum.
In this distinct region of central Anatolia, an outstanding figure is the Ilgaz Mountains (2560 m) occupying the north of the city. It is a site of real attraction for nature lovers and winter sports fans with its snowy peaks and wide woodland with fauna. Ilgaz National Park is one of the most beautiful parks of Turkey, and the ski center provides best opportunities for winter sports with its fine, modern facilities.