Situated on the banks of Tigris (Dicle),
Diyarbakir still carries a medieval air with its walls encircling the city.
These black basalt walls are perfect examples of
the military architecture of the Middle Ages. They are also very well known
since they are the second largest (5.5 kms) and bestpreserved walls in the world
after the famous Great Wall of China. Although there were Roman, and probably
earlier walls here, the present walls date back to early Byzantine times. There
are sixteen keeps and five gates, each of which deserves seeing along with their
inscriptions and relief. There are four main gates along the wall called as Dag
Kapi, Urfa Kapi, Mardin Kapi and Yeni Kapi.
You will have the chance to go back to bygone
days at the Deliler Han by the Mardin Kapi of the City Walls. Now it is restored
as a hotel preserving the original air of the old days when caravan travelers
used to stop and rest.
Another fascinating sight in the city center, is
the Ulu Mosque, notable for its original architecture and the ancient materials
used in the restoration of the building at various times. Nearby the Ulu Mosque
is the Mesudiye Medresse and Hasan Pasha Ham, a caravanserai now being used by
carpet and souvenir shops. The Nebii Mosque is a typical example of the Ottoman
style. The Church of the Virgin Mary is interesting and it is still in use.
The Kasim Padisah Mosque is also interesting,
especially due to the engineering which built a large tower upon four tiny
pillars about two meters high, called the Dort Ayakil Minare.
The location of noted mythological cave Eshab-ul
Keyf, and Dacianus ruins are in the town of Lice. The holy Mount Zulkufil and
Hilar Caves are in the town of Ergani. Within the environs of Diyarbakir are the
Birkleyn and Hasun Caves, the Antak City ruins and the Cayonu Archaeological
The city holds many mosques and buildings of long
historical and archaeological importance. There are four museums in the city
center. When you add to those the renowned watermelons of about 40 kilograms
approximately, and its silver and copper artifacts Diyarbakir certainly stands
as a destination to be visited. Gazi Kosku is a nice place for picnicking.
The town of Cermik is a spa center.
Time Line of Diyarbakir
An important town in Southeastern Anatolia, about 60 miles
north of the Syrian frontier.
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