Mediterranean Region

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The Mediterranean Region


The Mediterranean Region gets its name from the sea adjacent to it. The region is in the form of a strip with a width varying between 120 to 180 km and starts around Koycegiz in the west and extends as far as Cape Basit in Hatay Province in the east. It covers approximately 15 percent of Turkey with a surface area of 120,000 km2. The provinces of Hatay, Adana, Icel, Antalya, Isparta, Burdur and a large portion of Kahramanmaras are in the Mediterranean Region. Some of the counties of other provinces in the neighboring regions are included in the Mediterranean region. Agriculture and industry are important in the Mediterranean Region. Grain production is still important in the coastal sections of the region. However, in recent years industrial plants have also been grown extensively. In fact, close to two-thirds of the lands sown in the Mediterranean Region are grain fields. The proportion of industrial plants is approximately one-third. Among the grains, wheat comes first in all the provinces in the region, followed by barley. Cotton, among the industrial plants, is the main income source in the region. Cotton production in the region is about two-thirds of the total production in Turkey. Tobacco is cultivated in Hatay Province and some parts of the Goller (Lakes) Region.

The planted areas where fresh fruits and vegetables are grown cover a large area in the Mediterranean Region. The fields for growing early fruits and vegetables have advanced a lot due to the developments in transportation in recent years. Citrus fruits are the primary fruit crops growing in the region. More than four-fifths of the production of citrus fruits in Turkey are realized in the Mediterranean region. Bananas are grown only in this region in Turkey.

The Cukurova is the area with the fastest rate of industriali- zation in the region. It is, at the same time, among the main industrial regions in Turkey. Besides the various industrial branches (especially textiles) in Adana, the main industrial facilities in the Mediterranean Region are the Mersin Petroleum Refinery (ATAS), Iskenderun Superphosphate and Iron-Steel Plants, the Ferro-chrome plant in Antalya and the Seydisehir Aluminum plant.

The Mediterranean Region, especially due to the natural and historical assets around the Gulf of Antalya, is not only the most important tourist center in the region, but in the whole of Turkey as well. Surrounding the shores of the Gulf of Antalya there are various holiday villages and hotels with modern and extremely developed architecture that respect the environment, and at a level which cannot be seen in any of the other Mediterranean countries.


The main lakes in the Mediterranean Region are all located in the Goller (Lakes) region. Isparta Province, at the center of the Goller Region, is known for its beautiful rose gardens, attar of roses and its world-famous carpets. The Egridir and Kovada Lakes, and a portion of the Beysehir Lake, which are among the most beautiful lakes in Turkey, are in Isparta. The Golcuk Crater Lake, located to the southwest of the city, can be reached by passing through the famous rose gardens. The ancient Pisidian city of Antiocheia is located to the north of Egridir Lake. The Temple of Apollo, the baths, Saint Paul's Basilica, theater and aqueducts are the important structures in the ancient city.

There are 14 lakes in the vicinity of Burdur, the province of deep blue lakes. Among the most visited places in the city are the Insuyu Cave, which has a length of 597 meters and has nine lakes inside the cave; the Salda Lake, known for its fine sandy beaches and natural beauties; the ancient cities of Kibyra (Golhisar), Sagalassos (Aglasun) and the Kurucay and Hacilar Tumuli.


Adana - The Great City of the Land of Cotton
Adana is the largest city in the Mediterranean Region. It was founded on the fertile lands of the Cukurova Plain, famous for its cotton and irrigated by the Seyhan and Ceyhan Rivers, at the foot of the Taurus Mountains. Cotton, rice, sesame and peanuts are grown the most in this province. The province, which is very developed economically, is at the same time a large industrial center. Especially, the agro-industrial branches are highly developed. The most important structure in the city is the Stone Bridge, constructed by the Emperor Hadrian, over the Seyhan River. The Ulu Cami (Grand Mosque) and its adjacent complex of buildings, constructed in the sixteenth century and the Hasan Kethuda Mosque, which is also remaining from the same period are worth seeing. Unique examples of Roman mosaic art can be seen at the ancient cities of Misis and Anavarza. Yumurtalik and Karatas, which are located in the vicinity of Adana, are holiday towns known for their beaches.


Mersin - Icel - The Place Where Nature and History Embrace
Mersin is one of the most modern cities in the Mediterranean Region, with palm tree lined coastal boulevards, charming parks, beautiful hotels, commercial buildings and a free trade zone. Mersin, at the same time, has a large commercial port. The surroundings of Icel, which is the name of the province in which Mersin is located, are full of natural and historical assets. Tarsus, which was a large port during the Roman Empire Period, has been filled with the alluvion carried by the Seyhan River. Cleopatra, the famous Egyptian queen, and Anthony, the Roman Commander, met here. Furthermore, Tarsus is also the birthplace of Saint Paul, in the first century A.D. The Grand Mosque, Saint Paul's Well, the Cleopatra Gate and Tarsus Falls are located in Tarsus.

Ancient cities such as Pompeipolis (Viransehir), Kanitelis (Kanlidivane) and Korykos (Kizkulesi) are located at the Mersin Silifke coastal strip. The view of the Kizkulesi, constructed on a small island 200 meters from the shore, appears very beautiful from the coast. To the northwest of Kizkulesi are Cennet (Heaven) and Cehen- nem (Hell), which are tectonic caves, and the Narlikuyu Cave, which has many stalactites and stalagmites. There is a small church which dates back to the Early Christian Period in the Heaven Cave, which is located at a depth of 90 meters.



The environs of Kahramanmaras, which is a rich historical province, is surrounded by green forests. Attempts have been made to maintain the historical houses by restoration or preservation in the city. The handicrafts in the city, such as the copperworking and brassworking, wood and mother-of-pearl carvings, are very developed. Besides this, the city is also famous for its gold and silver decorative items and jewelry. The Maras ice cream, which is pounded in a large mortar is liked throughout Turkey.