Kahramanmaras is located on the intersection point of Mediterranean, Eastern Anatolia and Southeastern Anatolia regions. Southwest side of the city is covered by Nur Mountains. Elbistan and Goksun Plains are major ones in the city; Ceyhan River and Aksu stream are the most important rivers of city. Summer months are hot and winter months are cold. Kahramanmaras Airport is 8 km away from city center.
The findings obtained from researches in caves in Dongel Village-Tekir Valley, have showed that settlement in the area began in Upper Paleolithic Age and it continued in Neolithic, Calcalithic and Old Bronze Age, as well. The city was founded by Hittite, and then dominated by Assyrians, Persians, Romans, Byzantine Empire, Arabs, Seljuks, Mamluks, Dulkadirogulları and Ottomans respectively.
Maras is one of the few cities in the world to have a Hero City Gold Medal. It was conferred a title of Hero by Grand National Assembly of Turkey on February 7th 1973 for it’s public resistance during War of Independence, and it’s name was changed to Kahramanmaras (Hero-Maras in English).
Kahramanmaras is a city which has great tourism potential for its caves, Ashab-ı Keyf Complex and plateaus.
DISTRICTS OF THE CITY
Afsin, Andıran, Caglayancerit, Ekinozu, Elbistan, Goksun, Nurhak, Pazarcık and Turkoglu are districts of Kahramanmaras.
Elbistan is located 162 km away from city center on the Northeast side. It is worth to see Elbistan Great Mosque, Seljuk’s Bath, Himmetbaba Mosque and Tomb and Kız (Girl) Castle pertaining to Roman period in Kalealti Village.
Afsin is 146 km north of Kahramanmaras. The city has many places to go out but especially Ashab-ı Keyf (Seven Sleepers) Complex and Cave made here rather a significant place in terms of tourism. This complex is made up of a Mosque, a caravaserai, an attachment and many small buildings. The region is also a tourist-haunted for its natural beauty.
Goksun is 91 km far from Kahramanmaras. Within the limits of the city, there are remnants of some tumuluses and castles belonging to different ages, such as Maltepe Tumulus, Tumulus Boz, Kızıl Castle, Akca Castle, Cakır Caves.
Andırın, is 114 km away from provincial center. Meryemcil (Geben) Castle, Azgıt (Yenikoy) Castle, Anacık Castle are located within the limits of the district.
Pazarcıkis 48 km away from the centrum. Evri Town in Gozlugol, the cisterns and grave chapels in Turunclu Village pertaining to Byzantine period, rampart ruins of Abbasid Dynasty in Bozlar Village and the Abbasid castle in Sallıusagı Village are lions of the district.
Caglayancerit district is well-known for its plateaus.
Ekinozu is famous for its mineral springs. It has been found that these mineral springs help skin, stomach and kidney diseases.
Nurhak district is an old settlement area. The historical Silk Road passed through the district. It is possible to see ruins of that period.
It is advantageous to start the city tour from Kahramanmaras Museum. There are four exhibition halls in the museum. These are; Archeology Hall, Stone Works Hall, Ethnography Hall, and Garden and Portico Hall. There are 15965 coins and more than 25000 movable cultural properties in the museum.
There are a plenty of historical buildings and natural beauties to sightsee in the city and around it.
was used in Hittite, Roman and Ottoman Empire periods and has been restored many times.
is supposed to be built in Byzantine Empire period. A store, shelters and a church exist within the castle.
is located near Kahramanmaras Great Mosque and was built in the name of Dulkadirli Alâuddevle Bey’s daughter.
Kahramanmaras Great Mosque.
On the epigraph of this building, it was written that the Mosque was built by Dulkadirli Alâuddevle at the time of Sultan Kansu Gavri. The Mosque, of which roof and columns made of wood, is suggested to carry characteristics of 11th century wooden mosque patterns.
was built in 1519.
is supposed to be an artifact of 15th century.
Elbistan Great Mosque
is dated to 16th century.
Tashan Inn, supposed to be built in Dulkadirogulları period, is double-storied. Today it has still been used as a storehouse and small shops.
Ashab-ı Kehf Complex,
namely Seven Sleepers, is a group of buildings on a high ridge which is 8 km north of Afsin. It is believed that seven Roman youths, who had confessed Christianity at a time when their belief had been considered as a crime, had hided in Ashab-ı Kehf Cave with their dog and slept for 309 years, and then woke up at a time when their religion was free.
is in Elbistan district and remnants of Roman period were found out there. Some Roman buildings on Hittite layers were discovered. The inscription, of which three sides were written in Hittite hieroglyphs, is a significant finding. Found out with altar, the inscription was discovered far away from settling area.
is in Tanır Village of Afsin district. Also in Kesanlı Village of Afsin district, there are a few Byzantine Rock Relieves.
are in Turunclu Village. You may encounter grave chapels, house ruins and cisterns, as well.
Ufacıklı Village Ruins
include three chapels in good condition. These chapels belong to the Late Rome and Early Byzantine periods.
THE OTHER TOURISTIC PLACES
is 57 km away from Kahramanmaras. Dongel Stream passes through Dongel Cave, forming a great waterfall.
Bulut Deligi Cave
is an evolved fossil cave. Inside of it is filled with unique stalactites, stalagmites and column dripstones.
Thermal and Mineral Springs of Kahramanmaras are; Goksun Buyukkızılcık Mineral Spring and Ekinozu (Cela) Mineral Spring.
Ilıca- Sucatı, Sucatı- Bulutoglu, Aysepınarı- Karbasan, Turkmenler- Hacınınoglu, Engizek Peak, Kahramanmaras-Baskonus Plateau are suitable tracks for trekking. Moreover, plateaus of the region are convenient for walk and picnic. Yavsan Plateau is a wonder of nature for its rich forests, water springs and altitude reaching 1300 meters high. Baskonus, Karagol, Yedikuyu, Uckaya, Binboga, Bertiz, Gonan, Kozludere Plateaus are also worth to see.
The reputation of Kahramanmaras’s well-known ice-cream has gone beyond not only limits of the city but also the country’s borders. This delicious ice-cream is exported to many countries in the world and is demanded by those who know its taste well.
Pistachio paste, flour faggot, sun-dried fruit pulp faggot and hapisa are the other well-known desserts of the locale.
Tarhana, eskili (acerbity) soup, grinded lentil soup, Maras’s trotter, somelek meatball, juicy-oily meatball, Maras’s pilaf, chicken pilaf, flaky pastry or flan with cheese and curd and festival patty are the foods or meals peculiar to the district.
You may also buy Kahramanmaras’s famous red pepper, tarhana, pistachio paste, flour faggot and sun-dried fruit pulp faggot from the city both for yourself and your friends.
Handicraft is also developed in Kahramanmaras. Particularly, goods made by wood carving technique, copper materials processed by hammering, silver and goldthread works, “yemenis” traditional shoes and half boots made of leather are the authentic giftware which could be bought from Kahramanmaras.
The Grand Bazaar, Mazmanlar Bazaar, Demirciler (Blacksmiths) Bazaar, Bakırcılar (Coppersmiths) Bazaar, The Underground Bazaar and Cinili (Tiled) Bazaar, remaining from the Ottoman Empire period, are the important shopping centers of the city. www.kahramanmaras.bel.tr www.kahramanmaras.gov.tr