Antakya - Hatay

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St Peter's Church
Mosaic Museum
















 Antakya - The Eastern Mediterranean

Antakya, which is located to the east of the Mediterranean Region, also has a great tourist value, with historical assets as well as natural beauties. The city was founded in 307 B.C. by Antigonus, one of the generals of Alexander the Great. The city became an important center of trade, science and religious belief in the Roman and Byzantine Periods. This region played an important role in the spread of Christianity, and for the first time in history those who believed in this religion were called "Christians". The Saint Peter's Rock Church, to the east of the city, is where the first Christians worshipped. Extraordinarily beautiful and world famous mosaics, which were collected from the surroundings of Antakya, are displayed at the Mosaic Museum. The Habib-Neccar Mosque, which was initially a church, was converted into a mosque by Sultan Baybars. This structure, which is the largest mosque in the city, was restored in the seventeenth century and acquired its present appearance. The Antakya Citadel, constructed by the Romans on the hills to the east of the city, has also undergone various restorations

Iskenderun, which is the largest County of Antakya Province, is an important industrial and commercial port. It was founded by Alexander the Great after the victory of Issus. Turkey's longest and widest coastal promenade, surrounded by palm trees, is in Iskenderun. There are various parks, cafes and restaurants along the Promenade. Ulucinar (Arsuz) which is 34 km to the south of the city, is a holiday town known for its beaches. Sogukoluk is a high plateau, where one can feel cool in the summer. The elevation of the plateau covered with pine forests, is 850 meters above sea level.