All About Turkey

Bitlis

Bitlis stands in a narrow stream valley in the Eastern Anatolia, just in the middle of a green oasis. Due to its location in Anatolia, it is an important center for tobacco and honey production in eastern Turkey. A Byzantine castle with polygonal towers dominates the town. There are several mosques in the town, such as the Ulu Mosque of the 12th century and the Serefiye Mosque.

The city is surrounded by walnut trees, and if you are traveling through Bitlis in autumn, you will have the chance to buy some of these delicious nuts from the children who sell them by the highway. Local folk dances of Bitlis are also very famous. 25 kilometers northeast of the city, is the harbor town of Tatvan, from which there are passenger and train ferry connections across the lake to Van, sailing around Akdamar Island.

Mount Nemrut, is a perfect opportunity here for mountaineers and nature lovers (not to be mistaken with the magnificent mountain of the same name Nemrut, which has giant statues on top). This is an inactive volcano with a deep, clear and cold crater lake, also having hot volcanic springs.

Ahlat is an important site for Seljuk period Kumbets (mausoleums) and monumental tombstones.

There are fine beaches and restaurants in the town. 25 kilometers north of Ahlat, there is the ancient Urartian city of Adilcevaz where precious and important remains have been found. The Ulu Mosque, on the shores of Lake Van, and the Kef Castle from the Seljuk period, are to the west of Adilcevaz. The great Mount Süphan is, of course, the most attractive spot in Bitlis. You may climb Süphan in summer when it is perfect for trekking. Some travel agencies have tours to Süphan.

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