October 2010
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Sinop in Turkey: The beauty of the Black sea

Sinop is a small beautiful harbour city situated on the Black Sea Coast. It is the capital of the Sinop province and has a population of around 50,000 people. The high Isfendiyar Mountains isolate the city from most of Turkey, but it is well connected to some major cities by sea. Agriculture forms the economic base of the city, with the main produce being tobacco, flax and maize. Fishing is the main activity of the locals.
There is a legend that says Miletian colonists founded Sinop in the 7th century BC, and the city, is the place where the Cynic philosopher Diogenes was born. Another legend says that the province is said to have been named after the Amazon Queen “Sinova”.
The Sinop of today is a charming small town, not touched by many modern developments. It is very quiet, with no night clubs or discotheques. The main monuments to see include a ruined ancient citadel from the Byzantine and Seljuk periods, some columns and stones with inscriptions from the early Greek and Roman periods. The Alaeddin mosque built in 1214 is a popular attraction along with the Alaiye religious school from the mid 1200s.
All in all, Sinop is a tourist destination for people who want to spend some quality time in a quiet place.

Best time to visit /climate:

The Black Sea coast receives a lot of rainfall. Summers are cool and winters are mild. The best time to visit is summer, when weather is warm.

Location on Google maps:

View Larger Map

How to get there:

By plane: Sinop Airport is about 8 km’s from the city centre. Turkish Airlines has daily flights to Sinop from major Turkish cities.
By sea: Sinop is connected to Istanbul and other cities by sea. The Seaport is situated in the city centre itself. Check your local ferry guide.
By bus: You can also arrive in Sinop by a bus. The bus station is located in the city centre.

Places to stay (Hotels / Restaurants along with website / contact numbers):

There aren’t many hotels in Sinop, but plenty of campgrounds. If you want to stay near the centre of the city then hotels around Tersane district are a better option. Some the top rated hotels are given below:

1. Mola Hotel Sinop
Derinbogazagzi Sokak 34, Sinop, Turkey
2. Zinos Country Hotel
Enver BahadIr Yolu No: 75, Sinop, Turkey
3. Otel 57
MeydankapI Mah. Kurtulus Cad. No: 29, Sinop, Turkey
4. Denizci Hotel
Tersane Cad.No:13, Sinop, Turkey

The local cuisine of Sinop is the favourite and most widely available. ‘Nokul’, a local pastry that is made with raisins, walnuts, tahina, ground meat or cheese, is something to try out, as is ‘Manti’, another delicacy. Sea food and meat dishes are the main foods available in restaurants.

Some top rated restaurants are:
1. Diyarbakir Lokantasi
2. Turkish Music Watchtower

Blogs / sites about Sinop (with small excerpts from these blogs):

1. A brief history: (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sinop,_Turkey)
Long used as a Hittite port which appears in Hittite sources as “Sinuwa” (J. Garstang, The Hittite Empire, p. 74), the city proper was re-founded as a Greek colony from the city of Miletus in the 7th century BC .Sinope flourished as the Black Sea port of a caravan route that led from the upper Euphrates valley (Herodotus 1.72; 2.34), issued its own coinage, founded colonies, and gave its name to a red arsenic sulfate mined in Cappadocia, called “Sinopic red earth” (Miltos Sinôpikê) or sinople. It escaped Persian domination until the early 4th century BC, and in 183 BC it was captured by Pharnaces I and became capital of the kingdom of Pontus. Lucullus conquered Sinope for Rome in 70 BC, and Julius Caesar established a Roman colony there, Colonia Julia Felix, in 47 BC. Mithradates Eupator was born and buried at Sinope, and it was the birthplace of Diogenes, of Diphilus, poet and actor of the New Attic comedy, of the historian Baton, and of the Christian heretic of the 2nd century AD, Marcion.

2. Things to do, sightseeing and attractions:
There’s an air about Sinop that takes a person’s urban fatigue away. Just take a walk along the quay and listen to the sounds: the putt-putt of fishing boats, the waves pounding the rocks, the cries of the gulls, the greetings of the shopkeepers. The picture is no different in the back streets where time comes dropping slow. There always a sense of languor ready to descend on a person at any moment. The cluster of little settlements at Boztepe, to the north of the tiny peninsula on which the city is situated, are called an ‘island’ in any case; indeed all of Sinop is like an island. You can understand time by just having a look around yourself here. Wafting up from bakeries, the fragrance of ‘nokul’, a savoury pastry unique to the region, announces breakfast time. And while the rising roar of traffic indicates it’s time to go to work, the activity at the coffeehouses on the shore is more reminiscent of a lunch break. When fresh fish by the crate load are delivered to the restaurants from fishing boats bringing back the catch, it means evening has come, and the sea has long since been stained red by the time the flashing light on the breakwater starts saluting ships.

• http://www.kultur.gov.tr/EN/Genel/BelgeGoster.aspx?17A16AE30572D31395FB1C5180B6EBD6FB0FF6CAD6E83E4E
Sinop Castle: The castle was founded on the peninsula in BC 7th Century in order to protect the city. The castle was restored and used in Roman, Byzantine and Seljukian periods and. One section of the castle still protects its glory in modern times. The ramparts of the castle are 2050 m. long, 25 m. high and 3m. Width and there are two main entrance gates.
Old Sinop Prison: The area where the prison was constructed was the area where the largest shipyard the Black Sea region of the Ottoman period. The prison as constructed on the old field of shipyard inside the castle. The structure was used as a prison building after 1887. The structure is surrounded by high ramparts. These characteristics made the structure inescapable for the prisoners.

3. Map of Sinop: http://www.map-of-turkey.co.uk/maps/sinop.gif (best available map).

4. Photo Gallery:
1. Huge photo gallery of Sinop: http://www.traveljournals.net/pictures/turkey/sinop/
2. Photos by a traveller: http://upload.pbase.com/dosseman/sinop

5. Videos on You Tube:
1. Sinop sightseeing: The Hillside & Karakum:

2. Sinop:

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