Eskişehir (The MotherLand of Meerschaum)

Eskişehir is one of the oldest settlements (3500 BC) in this region. It was founded in the 1st millenium BC by the Phrygians. The Porsuk River and its banks have been a proper foundation place. The city is of interest with the museums; the Archaeological Museum which houses the Phrygian objects and sculptures; the Ottoman House Museum which is a very fine example of the 19th century domestic architecture has the local ethnographical items. There are three significant tombs around Eskişehir.These are Sheik Edibalı Tomb, The Kumbet Baba Tomb, and The Cupola of Alemşah. Phrygian Valley, The Falcon Fortress, The Unfinished Monument, and the Gerdek Rock are the other historical sites to visit.

In Eskişehir you will frequently see items made of meerschaum stone since this is the place where it originates. You will see the best meerschaum stone works at the Meerschaum Museum , the Rug and Seyitgazi Museums have many samples of different kinds of kilims and hand-knit socks and stockings. In Eskişehir there is opportunity to have good time at Sakaryabaşı where there is a spring lake and fresh fish restaurants.

Outside Eskişehir is Sivrihisar (Justinianopolis) full of typical Ottoman houses and famous for its kilims. Seyit Battal Gazi (Nakoleia) is 45 km south of Eskişehir. The mosque complex on the hill was built to pay homage to the Islamic hero Seyit Battal. The Yunus Emre Village is the burial place of the world famous great poet of the 13th century, Yunus Emre. There is a commemorative tomb built for him as well as a museum, and celebrations are held here every May. "Birth Festivities" which are dedicated to Nasreddin Hoca, a humor master and public philosopher, is organized in Eskişehir every year in the last week of June.

 

117 km from Ankara, on the Eskişehir road and 16 km to the right you will find the Phrygian city Pessinus, its contemporary name Ballıhisar. There you will see the Temple of Cybele - the mother goddess -, and an open-air museum housing interesting sculptures found in this ancient Phrygian cult center, which was built in the 10th century BC.

One of the most important settlement centers of the Phrygians, between the 8th and 6th centuries BC, was Midas, situated 66 kms south of Eskişehir. At this place of distant past, stands the ancient city with an acropolis overlooking the lower land. On its northwestern side, are two open-air cult temples, carved into the rock, and the most interesting sight in the area.

There are rock tombs and Phrygian inscriptions nearby, and a recently discovered underground tunnel which links the site to the valley extending below. The Midas Monument which was built in dedication to Cybele lies to the northwest of the ancient city. Three tombs in the environs of Midas which are found at Küçük Yazılıkaya, Sütunlu Kale and Doğanlı Kale are especially remarkable. Kumbet and Deveboynu are the other towns close to Midas, and visitors can enjoy the Phrygian monuments spread over these neighboring lands.

 

 

 

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