“Come, come; whoever you are, but come. Unbeliever, idol worshipper, mazdean or whatever, but come, Our lodge is not a lodge of hopelessness. Even if you have broken your forswear a hundred times, but come,”

This is Mevlana’s call; call of tolerance. Mevlana and Nasreddin Hodja, two internationally known thinkers of Konya, are symbols of tolerance of the world. Mevlana is the founder of Mevlevi tariqat. The tariqat school is near Mevlana’s Tomb. It is now converted into a museum. The most interesting section of the museum is The Greem Dome where the graves of Mevlana and his son Sultan Veled are. They exhibit works from Mevlevi, musical instruments, inscriptions and fabrics and tapestry in the museum. The museum also has a library with 9116 prints and 3705 manuscript works. The Mevlana Commemoration Festival (Şebi Aruz) is held every year between 10-17 December. The Meram quarter is in the city but it more looks like a summer resort. Meram Bağları is a summer resort for years already.

It was all wine yards in the past and today we still have some small part of them. The tea gardens and the restaurants are places of interest especially in the summer nights.

There are quite a few historical ruins around Konya from Neolithic age up till Ottomans. The city has been a scene of Hittite, Phrygian, Lydian, Macedonian and Roman cultures. It was the capital of Seljuks in 1076.

The Archaeological Museum

It is on the Larende Street and the findings from several excavations in and around Konya are displayed.

Museum of Ethnography

Local Konya costumes, handicrafts, belts, knitted purses, weapons and numismatics are on the display.

Ince Minare (Slim minaret), Museum of Stone and Wooden Works

The museum where stone and wooden works from Seljuks are displayed is in the Ince Minaret Medresseh. This Ince Minaret Medresseh (1258) was used as a university until XIX century. It is located on the western slopes of Alaaddin Hill.

Museum of Monumental Graves – Sirgali (Glass) medresseh

It is in a medresseh form, built in 1 242. Graves and grrave stones are on the display from Seljuks, Beyliks and Ottomans. It is situated in Gazi Alemsah Quarter, Sircali Street.

Koyunoglu City Museum

It covers an area of about 3000 square meters. On the basement floor are the Anatolian Civilizations and numismatics, on the first floor the natural history and on the upper floor are the ethnographical works, tapestry and kilims and a 20.000 book library. It is on the Kerimler Street Koyunoglu Road.

Manuscript Works Library

The library possesses a collection of old books with museum value. There are 4218 manuscript books and 12433 printed books dated from before 1928.

Ataturk Museum

This house was offered to Atatürk in 1928 by the Konya people as a present and it was converted into a museum in 1964. Atatürk’s costumes, belongings, photographs and documents are displayed.

Karatay Museum of Tile Works

Tiles and chinaware works from Seljuk Turks, Beyliks and Ottomans are displayed. The construction of the Karatay Medresseh was completed in 1251 and was converted into a museum in 1955. The walls of the building itself are covered with tiles too. It is situated on the north side of the Alaaddin Hill.

Alaaddin Mosque

It is situated on the north side of Alaaddin Hill that is a high tumulus in the city centre. Its minbar is made of interlocking ebony pieces and sets a marvellous specimen of Anatolian Seljuks wood craftsmanship. We can count Selçuklu (Alaaddin) Kiosk, Sahip- Ata Complex, Karatay Medresseh (Museum of Tile Works, north of Alaaddin Hill), Hasbey Darül Huffazı, Şerafettin Mosque, Aziziye Mosque, Selimiye Mosque and Yusuf Ağa Library among the pre-Ottoman period works.

Şemsi Tebrizi Tomb

The sarcophagus of Şemsi Tebrizi, closest friend of Mevlana, is placed under the lead pyramid and the dome of the turbeh. It is in the Şems Quarter.

The Konya Cuisine

Their meat-bread and tandour are the most famous ones. Höşmerim is a desert from the city’s unique cuisine prepared with cream. The Konya spoons, after having carved out of box tree, pear, hornbeam or poplar and then shaped and varnished with a special lacquer can be used for the kitchen work for years, and the difficult-to-bite but tasty Konya Mevlana Candy are tourist souvenir articles.

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The last inhabitants of Sille were the Greeks sent to Greece under an exchange program. Besides the Greeks, also Turks and Armenians lived in Sille before the republic. Sille lost its importance as a settlement spot after the exchange program.

We see this name Sille in the Phrygian period. But the most ancient ruin in Sille is the Hagios Kharion Monastery built by Roman Emperor Aurelianus in the name of Hagios Khariton. It was later known as Akmanastir (White Monastery) and is now in ruins. The rocky church just on its south is in better shape. It is estimated to belong to somewhere between IX- XII centuries. The Hagia Eleni Church near the water is one of the good conditioned churches. There are early Ottoman period works in Sille.

The Kurtuluş Mosque Subaşı known as Mormi Mosque and the mosques in Merkez Yakası, Karataş, Çay, Ak and Orta Mahalle are those Seljuk-Ottoman mosques where you can witness mastership in cut stone, wood and metal works and enjoy valuable carpets, kilims and manuscripts.


It is one of the oldest settlement spots known. It is in Çumra Ovası and 61-km from Konya. The findings from the excavations held there provided important clues on the progress of Neolithic age culture. It dates back to 6250 BC.

It has been discovered that people grew wheat, barley, broad bean and radish. They also had fruits like juniper, apple, nettle berry and peanuts and they even extracted oil from them. They were domesticating dogs and cattle and they were providing at least 90% of their meat from these domesticated animals.

The findings are on display in the Archaeological Museum in Konya and in the Anatolian Civilizations Museum in Ankara.

Karapınar and Meke Crater Lake

It is an open air museum 96-km to the east of Konya. There are impressive crater lakes there. The MekeCrater Lake 10-km away from Karapınar is one of them. This Meke Crater Lake, that is 300 x 500-m in dimensions and formed by an old crater filled with water with some small islands in it, is used in the past to produce salt. At the same time it is birds’ paradise and the Meke bird is a species of this area.

A piece of land called Ketirlik, on the left side on the way from Meke to Karapınar, is remarkable with its interesting landscape and natural formations. You can also see Çıralı Lake (another crater lake in the Karapınar vicinity), Acı (Bitter) Lake and the Selimiye Complex.


This Akşehir District of Konya (Konya 134-km) is world-known by the name of Hodja Nasreddin. In this town is a statue of the Hodja sitting on his donkey’s back but facing backwards. An International Nasreddin Hodja Festival is celebrated here on 5-10 July every year. Hodja’s tomb is in the graveyard, he was a medresseh teacher and he has served as a kadi (judge). His tomb was built in 1905 and restored in 1939.

In the beginning of the Independence War the town was Headquarters of the West Front. Mustafa Kemal and his crew stayed there for about nine months and prepared their plans for the Great Attack. The Headquarters was in the Municipality Building across the vegetable market and that place was opened as a museum in 1960. There is an archaeological museum in town too. The lake near the town with the same name is used to supply water and fish for the people.

Beyşehir and Beyşehir Lake National Park

Beyşehir, 90-km from Konya, is near the third largest lake in Turkey. The Beyşehir Castle, the summer palace of Alaaddin Keykubat, The Taş (Stone) Medresseh, Çifte Hamam (Twin Baths), Kubad-Abad Palace and Kiosks, Kız Kalesi and the Beyşehir Bridge are places worth to see. Carp, fresh water bass and some other fish species grow in this lake. They serve delicious fish dishes at the restaurants around the lake. There are about 30 islands of various sizes in the lake area which is now in a National Park status. Some ruins can be seen oh the Kizkalesi islet 3-km away. You can see the Eflatun Pınarı Hittite Monument sign on the 8th km of the road parallel to the Beyşehir Lake. This monument by the Sadikhaci Village near the lake is from the Hittite period. The other ruins in the vicinity are from other ancient settlements.

Other Lakes

There are many more other natural and dam lakes besides Turkey’s second largest lake Tuzgölü (Salt Lake) in the Konya Valley. Fish and crayfish grow in the Akşehir, Çavuşçu, Terkasan, Aslanapa, Hirfanli, Mamasun, May and Suğla lakes. The Acı Krater Lake and Huğlu Lake, Damla Kaya, Hatip, Dutlu, Apa and Altınapa Dam area and Kızılören are also worth to be visited.

The Caves

45-km on the Beyşehir- Akseki road, turn right and after 8-km you arrive at Çamlık Village. Uzunsu stream and a row of caves with interconnections between them are there. The Uzunsu waters first go into the Körükini Cave and continues for about 1200-m under the ground. It comes up again in the Değirmen Valley and enters Değirmenini Cave after a few hundred meters surface run. After another 300-m here then enters the Suluin Cave, and then comes up to its on-the-surface- run again. Especially the Suluin Cave is a place to see with its long narrow lake in it. The water comes up again from among the high and steep white rocks to meet with the sunshine and trees. Another cave near Konya is the Hacı Akif Cave is famous with its stalactites and stalagmites. There are also Karapınar caves and underground cities carved in the rocks.


The Kızılören Han ruins, a Seljuk caravanserai 41- km on the Konya- Beyşehir road, is one of the oldest in the area made of red and yellow stones. The Sultan Han Caravanserai, on the Karaman-Aksaray road 40-km before Aksaray, is one of the largest Seljuk caravanserais. Built in XII century in the name of Seljuk Sultan Alaaddin Keykubat. It is one of the most visited caravanserais as it is on the junction of various Anatolia tour routes.

Ilgın Hot Springs

This hot spring is claimed to be good for many diseases with the minerals it contains. It is on the Konya-Akşehir road and is 90-km away from Konya.

Yerköprü Waterfalls and Cave

In order to go there, you should take the Konya- Hadim road, then turn to left to Aladağ road 10-km before Hadim, and then after a 29-km drive you will arrive there. Karasu, one of the strands of Göksu River, falls from self-formed 20-m travertine. Göksu River goes into a 500-m cave and comes up again after it, right where Karasu makes a waterfall. If you are here on a hot summer day you must be prepared; with you swimming suits and tents. The pond the waterfall forms is very suitable and enjoyable for swimming. You may stroll on the travertine terraces, go behind the waterfall and into the darkness of the cave the Goksu River comes out.

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