Turkey Black Sea coast travel guide and destinations


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kemenche kemence pontic lyra fiddle bowed rebap

Kemenche by Sam Topalidis 





Sinop city travel
Sinop travel
situated on a narrow peninsula at Turkey’s northernmost point, Sinop is like a Black Sea island with its good-natured people and streets where time passes slowly.

pontian greek Development of the Pontic Greek Dialect
Development of the Pontic Greek Dialect
Will Pontic Greek continue to be spoken? Bortone (2009) believes Pontic Greek spoken in the Pontos in Asia Minor today will probably disappear. The challenge is to keep the Pontic Greek dialect alive. The more recent work of researchers like Emeritus Professor Peter Mackridge, Assistant Professor Pietro Bortone, Dr Theofanis Malkidis, Ömer Asan, Dr Anthi Revithiadou and Dr Vassilios Spyropoulos have increased our knowledge of the dialect.

Time For to Discover the Black Sea Highlands

Time For to Discover the Black Sea Highlands

Discover the Black Sea highlands in September when time is suddenly rent by a blanket of fog or the cry of a vulture, and make the acquaintance of nature in its most beautiful aspect.

Greek settlements pontos map
Formation of the First Greek Settlements in the Pontos

According to Liddell and Scott’s An Intermediate Greek-English Lexicon, the word Pontos stands for the sea, especially the open sea. In time, the word Pontos became associated with the north-eastern portion of Asia Minor that borders the Black Sea (see Map 1).1 The Greeks first called the Black Sea, Aξεινος πóντος (inhospitable, unfriendly pontos), but later it was called Εϋξεινος πóντος (hospitable pontos) when they became aware of its wealth in the lands around it ...

Chrypto-christians Trabzon Pontos Matsouka

Crypto-Christians of the Trabzon Region of Pontos

The crypto-Christians (also called cryphi, klosti, Stavriotes, Kromledes) were Christian Greeks who due to the Muslim persecution against Christians publicly declared themselves Muslims. However, in secret, they upheld their Greek language, customs and Christian religious practices...

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Mosques of Trabzon


It is in the High Street(Uzun Sokak). Though the exact date of foundation is not clear, it is estimated that Kasım Ağa had it built in the 18,h century. In 1883, some repairs were carried out. While the forefront was of hewn stones, the other stones were of rough stones and the wooden roof is covered with bricks.
The main transition from the external area for prayers to the main building has hewn stones as iveil as gilts.
The altar niches of the mosque which are illuminated from forefronts are in a baroque style. The minaret in the west is of stone and has a single pinnacle


The mosque is located opposite to Küçük Ayvasıl Chapel, in Maraş Avenue. The Mufti of the period, Ismail Efendi had made it built in 1953, but in 1970 today’s mosque was built. The roof made of hewn stones was built upon four walls and then surmounted by a dome. Three little domes are affiliated to the main dome.
The altar niche and the pulpit are of marble and the walls are decorated with motives and ornaments. The mosque has a fountain in the east and two tombs in the west. They belong to Hacı Ismail Efendi and his son, who are the founders of the former mosque.


The mosque ıvas built in 1789, in memory of Hızır Bey, who used to be a mayor. The entrance to the mosque is from the door opening to the fountain courtyard in the west. The walls are of thick hewn stones, and a wooden roof is covered with bricks. A two storey exterior area for prayers were extended later.
In the minaret, there are motives and ornamentations. The altar niche is in a baroque style and there are stone columns on both sides. The minaret is of stone and has a single pinnacle.


The mosque located in Had Kasim was built by Yavuz Sultan Selim’s accountant, Had Kasim, during the governorship of Yavuz Sultan Selim. The main place consists of a large dome set up on four walls. The dome is covered with lead and brick. The walls are of stone and the windows on the four sides illuminate the place. The altar niche and the pulpit are plain, the minaret made of stone has a single pinnacle.


Located in Esentepe, it ivas originally built as a church in 1341-1342, used as a cathedral for a certain period and later converted into a mosque in 1665. It underwent a considerable restoration during 1968-1969.
In the inside of the structure that has an interesting plan, the naves end in circles and with a polygonal apses on the outside. The dome being Caucasian in style, its rim being dodecagon. The altar niche and pulpit is plain and the minaret in the north is made of stone and has a single balcony.


Located in Çömlekçi, it was built as a church before the conquest in the 15th century. Soon after the conquest, it was no longer used in 1923 and was converted into a mosque by Husnu Koktug Pasha in 1953.
A three naved Byzantine basilica and covered with vault, it stands on elephant feet. During its use as a church, the north and west doors were used. But today, only the one on the north is used. Its altar niche and pulpit are plain, its minaret concrete and it has two balconies. It has two entrances: the north and ivest.


Located in Pazarkapi, it ivas built as a church during 10,h-l 1th centuries. After the conquest of Trabzon, it was named Nakip Mosque. Its northern entrance built by Turks, the structure is today known as Molla Siyah Mosque. It went through a restoration in 1975, the vault covered with concrete.
The building has three naves and there are two columns, the apses part of which is made of ancient blocks, separating the naves.


Built in 1577 by Erdogdu Bey, one of the governors of Trabzon, the mosque is located in Erdogdu. The mosque, made of stone, was built on a four-walled-roof covered with bricks. To its north is fountain courtyard and an external prayer place to the east. The walls of the courtyard are made of stone and still preserve its originality


Musa Pasha had the mosque, located in Middle Square(Ortahisar), Musa Pasha Street, built in 1668.
The roof, composed of a single and a big dome, is based on side roads ivhich are of stones. Till now, various repairs have been carried out. The mosque, whose entrance is from the north, has three doors to the east and two windows to the south. The stones in the eaves are decorated. The altar niche and the pulpit are plain. The minaret has a single pinnacle and stalactites of stone.


Located in Gulbahar Hatun quarter, just at the opposite of police station, the mosque was built in 1748. There is a fountain to the north of the rectangular building. The walls are of stones and a wooden roof is covered with bricks.
The main entrance has a stone arch and the window ceilings are of hewn stones. The altar niche and the pulpit are plain. The minaret in the mosque has a single pinnacle.


Hazinedarzade Osman Pasha, a former governor of Trabzon, had this mosque built in 1839. The mosque, which has stoneivork of a high quality, is at the same time, the biggest mosque of the city.
The mosque consists of an external area for prayers and the interior part as well. There are a dome resting on six columns and three small domes
situated in the east and the west. The external area for prayers is * M also surmounted by three small M domes. The inscription is on the interior circular-arched door whose * entrance is reached after one passes through the external area. The interior part also has two doors opening to east and west. The 4 door that opens to the left is '3 j ornamented and has the Sultan’s signature.
The pidpits ivhich are of marble are completely ornamented in a baroque style. There is an inscription in the front, and two rosettes on the cornerstones.


Located on Ortahisar, it is known to be the most important religious structure of the Byzantine period. It is also the structure that most reflects the decorative arts of the Ottoman Empire. The building, thought to be a temple in the Roman times, was built as a church in the 10th century and additions and restorations were made in the 12th, 13th and 14th centuries. It was used as a metropolitan church during the Komnenos Kingship, during which rituals were made for kings. Beneath the floor is mosaic engravement and frescoes inside the walls.
This mosque was probably the first to be converted from church and the first Friday congregational prayer was probably performed here. The wooden altar and stone pulpit added in this period are some of the best examples of the Ottoman art. The building underwent several restorations in the years of 1468, 1877 and 1971.. And it took current shape in the 12th century. The apse of the three nave building is round inside, polygonal outside. The north entrance was moved to the north in the Ottoman period. The structure is a great example of calligraphy with its architecture, inner wooden ornamentations and also inscriptions on the ivalls.


Located in Yenicuma, this mosque is dedicated to St.Eugenios, once thought to be the guarding saint of Trabzon.
The first structure is said to be a basilica that dates back to the 13rh century. Having no narthex, the structure has three apses and naves. The central dome is fixed on two cruciform legs in the east and a doric column in the west. On the apses are depictions of pigeons and eagles embossed.
After the conquest of Trabzon, it was converted into a mosque. A northern entrance and a minaret was built together with another entrance through the great entrance. The stone altar niche is baroque in style and the wooden pulpit is plain.
On the floor are mosaic ornaments and frescoes inside the walls. In the inner walls are invaluable ornamentations.


Viewing the city from Boztepe, the mosque and the tomb were built in 1890. Laid on a square plan, it consists of one dome and an entrance corridor in the northwest. It has two windows in the west and southeast and sixteen on its dome.
There is a tomb adjacent to the northeastern part of the mosque and a corridor leading to the mosque in the west of the tomb. The side walls and arches show traces of an original structure, while the altar niche, pulpit and pew were built later.
There are four graves in this tomb, one of which is said to belong to Ahi Evren. Of the three, on the one in the middle is written Had Hakki Baba’s name and his death date “1883” To the south of the mosque is a great historical cemetery. The mosque is open to use and the tomb is open to visit.


The mosque ıvas bııilt in 1514 in the memory of Giilhahar Hatun, the mother of Yavuz Sultan Selim. The building, which was known as Büyük İmaret or Hatuniye Mosque was situated in the middle of a complex of buildings of which only the mosque and the tomb have survived. The Mosque is categorized in the Zaviye (i.e. with hermit cells) group, an architectural style encountered in the early Ottoman period.
The mosque consists of an external area for prayers, a cell surmounted by a big dome and the interior part surmounted by a big dome. The dome surmounting the external area was built upon the arches and marble columns whose helmets are in a diamond shape.
The pulpit and the alter niches are of marble. The borders of the alter niches are plain at the sides and adorned with motifs at the top. The pentagonal niche terminates in the slactitevault.
On each cup is a damaged rosette.The classical ornamentation of the mosque has been spoilt by later modifications. Today’s ornamentation has been carried out in the subsequent years. From the inscription of the door it is clear that the mosque underwent repairs in 1885.
The fountain in the courtyard was once surmounted by a dome; however, with the recent repairs a conical spair was substituted.

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