Bookmark and Share

Open the online Arabic language course

Open map of TurkeyFlag of TurkeyTurkey / Cities and Towns /

Open street map


Early morning in Ankara, Turkey.
ZOOM - Open a large version of this image

Early morning in Ankara. Photo: brewbooks.

Mausoleum over Ataturk in Ankara, Turkey.
ZOOM - Open a large version of this image

Mausoleum over Ataturk. Photo: Peter Fortner.

Atakule tower in Ankara, Turkey.
Sheraton hotel in Ankara, Turkey.

Kocatepe mosque in Ankara, Turkey.
Kocatepe mosque in Ankara, Turkey.

Cankaya Park in Ankara, Turkey.
Ankara, Turkey.

Statue of Ataturk in Ulus district in Ankara, Turkey.
Ankara, Turkey.

Traditional mansion in the Ulus district in Ankara, Turkey.
ZOOM - Open a large version of this image

Traditional mansion in the Ulus district. Photo: Kristine Riskĉr.

Ankara, Turkey.
Ankara, Turkey.

Suburbs of Ankara, Turkey.
ZOOM - Open a large version of this image

Suburbs of Ankara. Photo: brewbooks.

Capital of Turkey with 3.2 million inhabitants (2004 estimate). Ankara is situated in the centre of Turkey (Anatolia), and rests at an altitude of 850 metres above sea level. It is located near the confluence of the Hatip, Ince Su and Cubek rivers. It is also the capital of the Ankara province with 4 million inhabitants (2004 estimate).
The economic base of Ankara is the government and its administration. Ankara is also Turkey's second most important industrial city, after Istanbul. The industries produce wine and beer, flour, sugar, macaroni products, biscuits, milk, cement, mosaic paving, construction materials, tractors, carpets and leather goods. In recent decades, tourism has become an important industry. For the region around Ankara, mohair is the most valued product. The agriculture produces fruit and wheat.
Ankara has several higher institutions of learning. The University of Ankara was established in 1946, the Middle East Technical University in 1956, while the Hacettepe University sets its founding year as 1206. Ankara also has the National Library, the State Theatre and the Presidential Symphony Orchestra.
Being the capital, Ankara also serves as transportation hub for a great region. While traffic in Ankara is often slow, there are still plenty of road and rail connections, as well as domestic and international air flights. Kirikkale lies 50 km west, Konya 350 km south, Eskisehir 250 km west and Istanbul 550 km west.
The architecture of Ankara is quite varied, a reflection of the city's history. The oldest remains go back to Roman times, and include a bath, the Column of Julian and the Temple of Roma and Augustus. From the Byzantine period, a citadel and a cemetery are worthy of note.
The Seljuqs have given Ankara the Alaeddin mosque, noted for its square form and single minaret (unusual in Turkey). The Ottoman period has given Ankara most of its historical buildings, although they are less impressive than buildings from earlier times when Ankara was a more important city. The Haci Bayram mosque from 1429 and the Mahmud Pasha market from 1464 are most noted from this period.
The central structure in the modern city is the Atatürk Mausoleum complex. Modern Ankara is well-planned, spacious and with wide boulevards and fashionable shops and other buildings. There are many green regions, parks and recreational areas in the outskirts. The old quarter to the south of the Byzantine citadel consists of narrow, winding streets and simple, yet attractive houses.
Ankara has some excellent museums, several of which are located within renovated Ottoman buildings. The Museum of Anatolian Civilizations houses a superb collection of Hittite artifacts.

It has have been proven that the area of Ankara has been settled since the Stone Age.
Late 2nd millennium BCE: A thriving town here, which is part of Phrygia. The town was probably known as Ancyra.
334: Ancyra is conquered by Alexander the Great.
3rd century: Becomes the capital of the small kingdom of the Tectosages tribe.
189: Incorporated into the Roman Empire.
25: Becomes capital of the Roman province of Galatia Prima.
1073 CE: Falls to the Seljuqs. The Seljuqs altered the name into Angora.
1101: Conquered by European Christian Crusaders.
12th century: There is much fighting over Angora, resulting in its decline. It eventually becomes part of the Seljuq Empire.
1356: Captured by the Ottoman bey Orhan.
1360: Incorporated into the Ottoman kingdom.
1402: Besieged by Timur Lenk, but returns to Ottoman rule the following year.
1919: Mustafa Kemal (later Atatürk) makes Angora the centre of his resistance movement, fighting both Ottoman troops and the invading Greek forces.
1923: Angora is made capital of the new state of Turkey. Mustafa Kemal chose Angora despite its small size as new capital, in order to distance the new state from the Ottoman Empire (i.e. Istanbul).
1928: The building of the modern city starts.
1930: Angora is renamed Ankara.

By Tore Kjeilen