Malatya, Turkey

Malatya is situated at the foot of the antiTaurus Mountains, and is an agricultural, industrial and stockbreeding center of Eastern Anatolia. The fertile plain is famous for its apricot growing and many delicious confections are made from it. This province was called "Maldiya" in ancient times, taking its name from the Hittite language. It is located 670 kms east of Ankara, and the two small towns outside the city constitute the most important sites for visiting. Aslantepe, at a distance of 7 kms, was once the capital of a Hittite state and dates back to the first millenium BC. It is the city carrying the old Hittite traditions and styles, and inside the city walls a palace has been found, with statues and reliefs, which are examples of the artistic works of that age.

Battalgazi, 9 kms from Malatya, is an ancient city of the Byzantine period, known as "Melitene" in those times. The city walls of this medieval center were constructed by the Byzantines. Inside the town, there is the Ulu Mosque of 1247 which was built by the Seljuks, reflecting their distinct architectural style.

The archaeological finds from Malatya are housed in the city museum, including new artifacts found in the lower Euphrates region, dating to the Neolithic and Calcholithic Ages. Next to this museum, there is a nice and original bazaar. Copper objects are sold along an entire street here, and it is a nice shopping place which will add color to your holiday.