Erzincan Travel Guide

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It is said that it is "Surrounded by mountains with vineyards in the center" and it really is... With the Keşişler to the north and the Munzurlar to the south Erzincan has a very special beauty and a different kind of splendour.

Erzincan, o beautiful Erzincan... Everywhere on your grounds there is sadness, separation and pain. Earthquakes appearing time and again have given rise to your evil fate.  The most important  North Anatolian Fault passes in the city. But Erzincan has always put up its own resistance to these hurts; each time having been able to recover itself into an even more beautiful form.

If you watch Erzincan from Esentepe to the south, across you will see a neat image criss-crossed with lovely lines. This is because it has always been planned. People from Erzincan will always say "There's no town with lanes and streets like ours." And they are right. All pleasing lines of geometry have been used in the design of Erzincan.

Eearthquakes have toppled and eradicated the buildings carrying fair marks from the depths of history and they also have struck down the hopes of the people of Erzincan. The only things left are the Urartian remains of Altıntepe to the east of Erzincan, Kemah Castle, the Mama Hatun tomb and caravan-stop, Gülabibey Mosque (Kemah), Orta Mosque (Kemaliye) and the Terzi Baba tomb.

The spiritual father of Erzincan, Terzi Baba, had sanctuaries where "those who did not return from their travels" could find silent but pensive comfort in his sacred lap. After the earthquakes the buildings have not returned but the hopes have only grown.

This ill-fatedness is not only geological. Its level of economy and trade is also most unfortunate. This ill circumstance has also unknowingly given rise to a lucky coincidence. The people of Erzincan make up their lack of involvement in trade with studying and teaching, and they have brought up a great many burocrats for our land. Besides the present faculties and schools for higher education our province has also started a soon to be opened university.

The seasons in Erzincan have a beauty of their own. In the summer months the blistering heat is broken by cool winds. And the freezing colds of the eastern Anadolu give up their place for a "soft winter".

There are a very many historical and touristic sights. Amidst the nice scenery in Çaglayan surroundend with the soothing sounds of water it is impossible to tire of the tea from the samovar. The best trout can be found here. In Eksisu you will taste the "mineral water" and you will seek ailment in its hot springs; in the sulphuric water you will refind yourself. The milk products from the meadows of iliç will wet your appetite and have you demanding more. In Üzümlü (Cimin) cloth-sack cheese will meet its table mate the black grape, qualified by the people of Erzincan as being blessed (because it is impossible to make wine from the grapes of Cimin). After you have eaten your fill of these grapes you will turn to the cherry, the unmissable fruit of the spring months. In Çayirli on the Otlukbeli Fatih and Yavuz are commemorated and the traces of the war can still be seen as if it had been fought yesterday. And in the deep history of Altıntepe you will leave behind your weariness amidst the soothing coolness of Beytahtı.

Besides these historical and touristic sites there also many cultural riches. The people of Erzincan have expressed their feelings using designs and motifs on copper works which decorate the windows of the shops.

O beautiful Erzincan... I cannot count your entirety. You have to be lived. What a pleasure it is to taste the grapes grown from your vineyards, to quench your thirst with water from the springs on your mountainsides. With these good feelings you will get to know Erzincan and will love her with your deepest affections.

The Girlevik Waterfall

It lies 30 km southeast of erzincan within the borders of the Çağlayan municipality. With its natural coolness and enchanting beauty it is one of Erzincan\'s most splendid sights. This waterfall is the second foremost example of its kind. In the winter it is possible to ice cliff climb the frozen waters of the Girlevik Waterfall. In the summer\'s scathing heat a lot of tourists come here looking for freshness.

Ekşi Su

Being on the road to Erzurum and not far from the city this is a resting place of our people. This place is the source of the Erzincan Böğert mineral water and in the area eight kinds of salubrious water can be found. Together with the local and foreign tourists a lot of researchers and scientists visit here. And furthermore the gases which happen to arise from this area have a aspirinlike effect on the population. Fish can be caught in the canal which runs through the area. A bit above the area on the hill where the historic Kız Castle is situated it is possible to parachute of the hillside.

Hot Spring

This is on the road from Ekşi su to Erzincan. You can see this hot spring 1 km before Ekşi su. The two meter high sulphuric water pool at the entrance leaves people nonplussed. There are a lot of pools in this area. People with their families look for well-being in these pools. Research has shown that the water from these pools has a wholesome effect on rheumatism, skin, arteriosclerosis and heart disease. The water has a temperature between 33 and 37 degrees centigrade.

Çermik Park Area

This is 20 km from Erzincan in the town of Üzümlü\'s Karakaya village. This park is worth seeing because of its special beauty, cold waters, mineral springs spraying out from green places. There are pools here where trout is bred and this is also one of the favourite places of the people of Erzincan.

Otlukbeli Minerals and Kanlı Çayır

This place has not yet been discovered. It is like the mineral deposits at Pamukkale. It is on the same place as where Sultan Mehmet fought a war with Uzun Hasan. The red colored mineral water which springs from here creates the red mineral deposits of Otlukbeli and after that the Kanlı Çayır. It has not yet been touched by human hands.

Beytahtı

This is 6 km to the southwest of Erzincan. It is a resting place on the shore of the Karasu river. Because Seljuk and Ottoman Beys used to rest here its name has become Beytahtı. There are water springs, rapids, wide meadows and lots and lots of trees.

Kadı Lake and Green Eğin

Situated in the Kemaliye town of Erzincan province, this can be called a wonder of anture which has given rise to many legends. It is a spring water lake surrounded by green hills and trees.

Lake Aygır

This is a crater lake and is similar in beauty to the Kadı Lake. It lies above the Keşiş mountains. This location is partial to winter sports and is near the Ergan (Munzur) mountains where a skiing facility is going to be established.

Part or or all of this text stems from the original article at: Erzincan Edebiyat Dergisi

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June 27, 2006 change by sezgin aytuna

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