Turkey’s Happiest City: Sinop!
Everyone here is very happy! According to datas which TURKSTAT (Turkish Statistical Institute) recently published, the city which has the highest happiness level in Turkey is Sinop with a rate of 77.66%. Let’s introduce you our beautiful city, where people are happy.
Sinop is located in the most northern part of Anatolia in the middle of the Black Sea Region, at the narrowest part of the Boztepe Peninsula. It is one of the most beautiful natural ports of the Black Sea. The province, one of the oldest cities in the region, is the birthplace of Diogenes, one of the third century philosophers. The beaches that are intertwined with forests offer incredible beauty to visitors to the city.
The determined oldest name of Sinope located in Paphlagonia region in ancient ages, is Sinope. According to a myth, the city took its name from an Amazon queen which is regarded as the founder of the city. According to another myth, the city established by Sinope, one of the water fairy daughters Asopos, the god of the river in ancient Greece. The aforementioned Greek legends are dated back to – IV – IV – III and the head of Sinope is seen on top of the city coins of the same period. Whichever rumor is adopted, it is certain that the city’s founder is Sinope. However, if Sinope is a water nymph, the city is a Greek colony; if is a Amazon; It has to be established by the indigenous people of Anatolia. This dilemma has not been solved by linguistic studies: Sin or Sind, which is foreign to Greek etymology, is come acroos mostly in Pontos, Eastern Anatolia, Iran and India, except Greece. This shows that the name of Sinope may have come from native Anatolian languages.
Places to Visit
Historical Sinop Prison
The area where the Criminal House was located was the largest shipyard of the Ottomans in the Black Sea. The prison was built in the old shipyard area, inside the interior castle. It has been used since 1887 as a prison house. It is surrounded by high castle bodies. Because of this feature, it is impossible for prisoners to escape. Currently, it has been devolved to the Ministry of Culture and brought to the tourism.
It was built on the peninsula to protect the city in the 7th century BC. It was used, by repairing during the Roman, Byzantine and Seljuk periods. Nowadays some of its part still maintain their splendor. It has a length of 2050 m, a height of 25 m, a widht of 3 m and two main entrance gates.
It’s in the west of the city. It is famous for its kilometers long sandbank and running like a strip of 15-20 meters wide at seaside. The Akliman picnic area organized by the Forestry Management Directorate will answer all kinds of needs. There are motels, camping and picnic areas along the sandbank.
Hamsilos Bay, where the lush forest, colorful flowers and the sea enter land like a river is 11 kilometers from city center. Hamsilos Bay is actually a “fjord”, a geological and geographical term. (“Fiyord” is the name given to the narrow sea bays between the steep cliffs and rocks formed with the filling of the glaciers with sea water Hamsilos Fiyord occurred during the last glacial era when the Black Sea was completely frozen. Hamsiros is the only example of this geographical formation in Turkey, which is generally seen in the northern countries. Hamsilos Cove is today a national park. And on the reason that Sinop is very close to the city center, it is the most important picnic area of Sinop people. It is also a shelter for fishermen in stormy weather as one of the few bays in the Black Sea.
Erfelek, which is a lucky town with its unique beauty of the Black Sea Region, in terms of greenery and scenery, has recently begun to be included in the Black Sea tours organized for nature and mountain tourism. One of the interesting natural beauties worth seeing is the “Tatlıca Waterfalls“. The Tatlıca Waterfalls is a wonderful beauty of nature, consisting of 28 beautiful waterfalls with its all kinds of green tones, cold water and trouts. These waterfalls is flooded with visitors in recent years. The waterfalls being talked about, gradually rise up behind each other, and a hard climb is needed to see and recognize all of the waterfalls.
The cave located within the boundaries of Inaltı Village, 40 km away from Ayancık District, is 1070 meters high from the sea. There is transportation by car up to 50 m below the cave. From here, the mouth of the cave can be reached through the stairs. There is a wide stairhead in the mouth of the cave. İnaltı Cave is highly suitable for tourism purposes with both in-cave stalactite feature and the beauty of its natural surroundings.
Its average length is 658 meters. The 300-meter section of the İnaltı Cave, which was inspected by the MTA in 1996, is illuminated and opened to tourism. It has been determined that only a 125-meter section of the cave’s next 358-meter section is suitable for tourism. The cave runs in the east-west direction by drawing (S). The entrance hall is opened a straight gallery of 125 m in height, 15 m in ceiling height and 10-12 m in width. This gallery is the widest and driest part of the cave. Stalactites, stalagmites, columns, covers and wall stalactites, dripstone ponds are started to be seen in the gradually narrowing cave. Malt-Alt Kereatse located on the aged Dogger granite foundaton located on base and forming karst base level evolved in its stubborn formation. On the other hand, cauliflower and popcorn-shaped dripstones are come across in the lower parts near the cave floor and just above the water level. There are highly limestones containing melting characteristics in the formation base of the caves and the pits in this region.
Inaltı Cave fascinates its visitors with its the mystical and mysterious view. There is a trip route in the cave and there is a countryside cafe in front of it; It is excitedly waiting for its visitors.
It is a Byzantine building. It shows the typical architectural examples of its era. There are a big courtyard built in a large area and a symmetrical planned venue. The building consisting of chapel and other venues is in the shape of rectangle. In the church, only superstructure covered with vault, of the chapel stood up as intact. The other sections’ top are open.
Although painted frescoes located in chapel ceiling and the entrance area stand up, they were very damaged. It is a fine example of building technology of Byzantine. Four rows of bricks were used on all the walls.
It is built on one of two steep rocky hills in Gökırmak Valley where Boyabat district is located. The castle was built in accordance with the natural structure of the rocks. Some of the towers between the castle bodies are rectangular, some of them are round and there are stairs leading to the towers in the inside. The entrance to the castle is provided from a small door next to the large rounded castle, from the southeastern side. The building which antiques from Late Roman, early Byzantine period are exhibited, shows Ottoman Castle features today. This statue show that the castle was used from the Late Roman period to the Ottoman period. With its today’s situation, walls and bastions and construction materials lay bare it is an Ottoman castle. However, the foundations of the castle have already been laid. For this reason, it is possible to analysis the castle as in two parts as, old and new castle.
Foundation of the old castle was laid in the beggining of 6th century BC by Paphlagonians. It is possible to find Roman and Byzantine artifacts on some of the castle interior walls of the old castle. It is certain that the present form of the new castle built in the time of Osmanoğulları. However, the date of construction is not known due to the fact that no inscription of the castle has been found.
İnceburun Lighthouse is one of the most important lighthouses of our country. The reason for this is that it is located at the northernmost point of Turkey. In İnceburun, this unusual lighthouse is located on beach side, on a straight place. As a matter of fact, perhaps it is the luckiest of other lighthouses.
Built in 1863, the lighthouse has hosted a family for many years. There is a 12 meter tower in the different shape of the lighthouse. From a distance it looks like a giant. You will understand that it has such a different architectural pattern. As defiant to the Black Sea, it stands againts the waves with its the white body.
It is possible to reach İnceburun Feneri which is located about 20 km away from Sinop Center, via Ayancık Road.
In the North Anatolian Region, between the east of Ayancık and the north of Gerze, Sinop Peninsula is located. The Sinop peninsula, which is a massive peninsula that forwards towards the Black Sea, is a admiring spectacular area.
The Sinop Peninsula is deeply divided with the valleys. The peninsula, which separates the East and West Black Sea basin sharply, is covered with young sediments. At the northwestern point of the Sinop Peninsula, İnceburun is located, which is known as the most northern point of our country. On the northeast side, the Boztepe Burnu is located, which connects to the territory where the Sinop Center is located.
Located in the steepest areaon the Black Sea coast of Turkey, Sinop attracts attention with Karakum Beach.
Karakum Beach attracts attention by local tourists rather than foreign tourists. The nature of the beach has an untouched beauty.
The sea bottom is covered with black sand. The reason of this that, Boztepe Peninsula is formed as a result of a volcanic eruption and ash and sand blown out by the volcano. The beach is generally calm. Sunbeds, umbrellas, shower and cafeteria services are available on the beach. There is also a facility.
Camping Caravan: Gazi Camp, Karakum Camp, Yuvam Camp, Akliman Martı Kamping and Demirkollar Kamp, which have built for tent and caravan tourism in the city center, are all qualified to meet all kinds of needs.
Hunting: There are a large number of wild pigs in Sinop province and its districts. They are hunted by local hunters. Once the pork hunting infrastructure is completed, the hunting will overflow from the region.
Sailing: Sailing competitions are held at the national and international level in Sinop city center.
What to eat?
Local specialties; Nohul (grape-walnut-precious-yoghurt), Folding Pilaki (Hıdırellez meal), Corn Cake, Mamalika, Keşkek Meal, Anchovy Stuffing, Quince and Chestnut Meal, Kulak Hamuru, Mısır Tarhası, Eggplant with vinegar and Leek with vinegar.
What to Buy?
The region is very rich in the terms of handcrafts. Linen weaving are made in the district of Ayancık. One of the handicrafts seen in the center is the ship modeling which is also called kotracılık among the people. Also, the handmade knife production continued by four generations of the family Özakes have a significant place.
Do not return before
Visiting Akliman Region, Hamsilos Bay, Sarıkum Lake (sanctuary protection area), Ayancık Akgöl, Erfelek Tatlıca Waterfalls
Seeing the Sinop Museum and its castle,
Eating pasty, Nokul (with mince and grape), Islama (with chicken),
Buying world famous souvenir boat models, touristic steel knives, linen engraving…