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Gallipoli in Turkey: A memorial of sacrifice and courage




Gallipoli is a peninsula in the north-western part of Turkey, with the Aegean Sea lying to its west and the Dardanelles strait to its east. It is the site of the bloody and tragic battle, the Gallipoli Campaign or the Battle of the Dardanelles, in which a total of about 60,000 soldiers lost their lives. The Gallipoli Campaign is just another battle in the long list of battles that were fought during the First World War, but it remains etched in the memory of every Australian, New Zealander and Turk. In 1915, during the First World War, the British and its allied forces attacked Gallipoli, in order to capture Constantinople and gain strategic advantage. What ensued was an eight month long battle which resulted in the Ottoman armies defeating Britain and its allies. Thousands of Australian and New Zealand soldiers lost their lives in the battle, which turned out to be a defining moment for both Australia and New Zealand, as the people of these countries discovered a feeling of nationalism that brought them together to achieve a new national identity separate from their mother country, Britain. The battles are commemorated every year by all Australians and New Zealanders on ANZAC Day, 25th of April.
Even for the people of Turkey, the Battle of Canakkale, as it is known there, is a source of inspiration and pride. Turkey celebrates Canakkale Zaferi (Canakkale Victory) on the 18th of March every year, to commemorate their victory over the allies. The peninsula is a sacred site for Turkey, Australia and New Zealand, and has many monuments that have been erected in the memory of the soldiers who died for their countries. Every year many tourists, mostly from Australia and New Zealand, visit Gallipoli, an epitome of courage, sacrifice and love for one’s motherland.

Best time to visit /Climate:

The best time to visit is spring (April to June) and autumn (September to November) when the weather is pleasant.

Location on Google Maps:


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Driving directions between Ankara and Gallipoli in Turkey (on Google Maps):


View Larger Map

How to get there:

By plane: There are regular flights operated by Turkish Airlines, between Istanbul airport and Canakkale airport. From the airport one can take a taxi or bus to the ferry port.
By sea: There are many ferries departing to Eceabat town. From the town you can take a taxi or bus to the all the memorials, museums and other places to see.
By Bus: There are buses going to Canakkale, regularly, from all major cities of Turkey.

Places to stay (Hotels / Restaurants along contact numbers):
Canakkale offers a wide variety of hotels to stay, from budget to expensive ones; there is a hotel to suit everyone’s pocket. Eceabat offers less variety of hotels, but is a quieter alternative, and much closer to the battlefields. Some of the top rated hotels are as follows:

1. The Gallipoli Houses
Kocadere Koyu, Canakkale 17900, Turkey
2. Anzac Hotel
Saat Kulesi Meydani 8 | (Clock Tower Square), Canakkale 17100, Turkey
3. Tusan Hotel
Guzelyali, Canakkale 17001, Turkey
4. Eceabat Hotel
Cumhuriyet Meydani 20 A, Eceabat, Turkey

Source: TripAdvisor

Close to the battlefields, Eceabat is the only town where you would find some fine places to eat. Moving away a bit further, Cannakale has a lot of restaurants offering a wide variety of cuisines. Some of the top rated places to eat are given below:

1. Mecca Restaurant
Kemalpasa Mah. Yali Cad. No. 5, Canakkale, Turkey
2. Albatros Fish Restauran
Ataturk Caddesi, Canakkale, Turkey
Phone: +902862178111
3. Guntepe Restaurant
Izmir AsfaltI uzeri, Canakkale 17200, Turkey
Phone: +902866181479
4. taki restaurant
bozcaada liman, Canakkale, Turkey
Phone: +902866970087

Source: TripAdvisor

BLOGS / SITES ABOUT GALLIPOLI (WITH SMALL EXCERPTS FROM THESE BLOGS):

1. A brief history: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gallipoli
After the devastating 1354 earthquake, the Greek city of Gallipoli was almost abandoned, but swiftly reoccupied by Turks from Anatolia, the Asiatic side of the straits, making Gallipoli the first Ottoman position in Europe, and the staging area for their expansion across the Balkans.
The peninsula, a part of the Byzantine Empire, was gradually conquered by the Ottoman Empire from 13th century to the 15th century. The Greeks living there were allowed to continue their everyday life. Gallipoli (Turkish: Gelibolu) was made a district (Kaymakamlik) in the province (Vilayet) of Adrianople, with about thirty thousand inhabitants: comprising Greeks, Turks, Armenians and Jews.
Gallipoli became a major encampment for British and French forces in 1854 during the Crimean War, and the harbour was also a stopping-off point on the way to Constantinople. Gallipoli did not experience any more wars until World War I, when British and colonial forces attacked the peninsula in 1915, seeking to secure a route to relieve their ally Imperial Russia in the east. The Ottomans set up defensive fortifications along the peninsula, with German help, and the attackers were eventually repulsed.
In 1920 after the defeat of the Russian White army of General Pyotr Wrangel, a significant number of emigre soldiers and their families evacuated to Gallipoli from the Crimea. From there, many went to European countries, such as Yugoslavia, where they found refuge. A stone monument was erected and a special “Gallipoli cross” was created to commemorate the soldiers, who stayed in Gallipoli. The stone monument was destroyed during an earthquake, but in January 2008 reconstruction of the monument had begun with the consent of the Turkish government.

2. Things to do, sightseeing and attractions: http://wikitravel.org/en/Gallipoli
There are three main battlefield areas – Cape Helles (Turkish: Seddülbahir), Anzac / Pine Ridge and Suvla Bay (which has fewer places to visit). Depending on how detailed your itinerary is, it would be possible to visit the main sites of interest, particularly around Cape Helles and Anzac/Pine Ridge, in a single day. More realistically, two or three days allow plenty of time for an extensive tour, taking in all the battlefield sites, cemeteries and memorials. Must sees include:
The Cannakale Martyrs Memorial (near Cape Helles); The British Memorial at Cape Helles; Anzac Cove; Pine Ridge Australian Memorial; New Zealand Monument, Chunuk Bair; Ataturk Statue, Chunuk Bair .
2. http://www.gallipoliexperience.com/en/places-to-visit-in-gallipoli.html
Chunuk bair was one of the most important spot and peak of the Sari bair range in Gallipoli battlefield. The Battlefield of Chunuk Bair was a battle area between the Turkish defenders and troops of New Zealand and Britain on Turkey’s Gallipoli peninsula in August 1915. The attackers captured the Chunuk Bair, “Canak Bay?r?” (Basin Slope) in Turkish (now “Conk Bay?r?”) in between 6-10 August. This was the main objective of the Anzacs’ offensive of early August 1915 when they tried to break out of the stalemate with the Turks in the Anzac sector but their attempt was met with the staunch defence of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk (Turkish commander) and the bid was unsuccessful.
Anzac Cove is one of the small cove in north side of the Gallipoli peninsula in Turkey. It became a well known cove during and after the World War I, because ANZAC (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps) landed on this cove on April 25th 1915. The Anzac cove is nearly 600m long. From the first day of the war North Beach was the port of Anzacs. Anzac Cove beach became the main supply for the Australian and New Zealand troops for the eight months of the Battle of Gallipoli.

3. Map: http://www.anzac.govt.nz/images/gguide/map_index.jpg

4. Photo Gallery:
• 1.Various pictures of Gallipoli: http://www.travelpod.com/photos/5/Turkey/Gallipoli.html
• 2. Pictures by a traveller’s:
http://www.viator.com/tours/Istanbul/Gallipoli-Day-Trip-from-Istanbul/d585-3795IST11/photos

5. Videos on You tube:

1. Memorials of Gallipoli:

2. Gallipoli ANZAC Day Tour, Lone Pine, Chunuk Bair, ANZAC Cove:




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