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CHILDREN OF THE ANKARA CITADEL

Ankara Kalesi (Ankara Citadel), the symbol of the town rises on a hill of 978 meter high. During Hittites era it has been built as a garrison however according to rumors Ankara King Midas had it built. Ankara Kalesi has hosted several civilizations at various periods of history and naturally had many repairs and restorations since then. During Galatians period the castle has been enlarged and city walls added and brought to a position completely overlooking the town.

The citadel has two sections: inner castle and outer castle. Although the outer castle has twenty observation towers only few has reached today. The outer castle has seven entrances: Çankırı, Istanbul, Izmir, Namazgah, Erzurum, Kayseri and Aynalı are the names. Most of the inner castle towers are still in good condition. The walls have been built with marble and red Ankara Stone. The highest point of the inner castle is called Akkale (white castle) or Ali Taşı(High Stone). Allaaddin Camii being one of the best examples, the inner castle completely carries the characteristics of Traditional Turkish architecture.
Between the inner castle walls old Ankara houses attract your attention. This area being one of the oldest residential areas of the town is called Eski Ankara (Old Ankara). The houses are mostly wooden and mud brick. Although there are still some families living on those houses most of them have been converted to restaurants and gift stores. Antique dealers, carpet sellers, and masters of traditional Turkish handicrafts continue their work here.

The stands near the entrance exhibiting various herbs, spice and kuruyemiş (dried fruits) will fascinate you and we strongly suggest you to taste some. You wont be regretted.

They welcome the visitors with beautiful panorama and traditional Turkish food accompanied by delicious wine. The sunset is worth to watch over the castle towers. Climb the cihannüma (terraces) of the said mansions and listen the children’s voices, songs shortly the sound of approaching night, you sure feel you are in another Ankara.

Naturally there are several more sites around the castle offering delicious Turkish food and the oldest one is of course Boğaziçi Lokantası located at Ulus, Denizciler Caddesi next to Adliye (Judicial Court) building. Especially the sweets are marvelous. Well have a good meal and before leaving for the New Ankara drop to Akman Bozacısı it is on the courtyard of the Çarşı at Ulus square and have delicious boza. We don’t know whether you like this winter drink but at least you can have a small break by watching the passer bys and maybe take some notes for the “story of the day”! Well, the citadel and environ tell an Ankara tale to those listen….
(http://www.mymerhaba.com)

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Additional Photos by Salim Fikirkoca (sufi) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1705 W: 165 N: 1512] (9588)
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