(Halikarnassos or Halicarnassus) was first settled by the Dorians
in 100 B.C. In the 5th century B.C. Father of History, Herodotus, was born here.
Mausoleum, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, was built here after the
Persian mayor, Mausolus. The ancient theater is one of the few pre-Hellenistic
ones to survive. In 1402 the Knights of St. John, the European Crusaders,
dismantled the Mausoleum to build the Castle of St. Peter. Each turret was named
and designed after the knight's homeland: England, France, Germany, Italy and
Spain. The Underwater Archeology Museum is within the compound. Today's Bodrum
is a hot resort town.
Bursa (Prusa) was founded in 230 B.C. by King Prusias of the
In 1335 the Ottomans moved their capital from Iznik to Bursa. Among many Ottoman
structures in Bursa, the awe inspiring Green Mosque with its marble entry and
fascinating Iznik tiles is a must see. Today Bursa is a popular ski and therma-mineral
spa destination. Also it is well known for its superb silk and cotton products.
Canakkale - Gelibolu
(Dardanelles - Gallipoli ) has been a site of or a
bridge to many wars: Persian King Xerxes made a bridge out of boats to cross the
Dardanelles with 400,000 men but only to lose to the Greeks, 480 B.C. Spartans
defeated the Athenians here and put an end to the Peloponnesian War, 404 B.C.
Alexander the Great crossed it in the opposite direction to conquer Asia. The
last battle seen here was when the British Empire's Winston Churchill devised an
assault to gain access to the waterways leading to Istanbul. 500,000 lost their
lives in nine months during W.W.I. The victor was Ataturk and his army of
defenders. Two bullets found meshed together would be symbolic of how intense of
a battle took place at Gallipoli. Anzac Castle and Turkish War Memorial
commemorate the battle.
Cappadocia is known for both its surreal land formation and for people
using it as a sanctuary over the ages. The unusual landscape was created by
volcanic activity and weather elements over millions of years. There
are valleys as well as a snow capped volcano, Mt. Erciyes (Mt. Aergius). These
fairy chimney like structures were carved into by people seeking shelter from
the Persians, Romans and then the Arabs. In 401 B.C. Greek historian Xenophon
writes about settlements at Cappadocia. Hints of Hittite civilization were found
and the converts of St. Paul resided here for 1,000 years. About 40 cities
complete with churches, monasteries, winery, sewage system, cemetery and a
prison were sculpted into nature's curious phenomena. Ornate walls with precious
frescoes are wonderfully preserved. These man-made caves are still being
utilized as cool storage of produce, hotels, restaurants, homes, etc.
Points of interest include: Cavusin, Avanos, Sultan Marshes (bird paradise).
Valleys: Ihlara, Guvercinlik, Devrent, Soganli, Kizilcukur. Underground Cities:
Mazikoy, Derinkuyu, Kaymakli. Museums: Zelve and Goreme.