My stay in Ankara was very much shaped by the terrible earthquake in Van. My aunt lives in Van, and her home there was destroyed. While re-building, she and her husband were staying at their property/store-room/mini-museum in Ankara. Despite everything, she insisted that I visit her in Ankara so that she could show me the sights. And so, I was blessed to have the hospitality of my aunt’s close friend, who invited us to stay with her for the week.
On the day that I visited Ankara Kalesi, I also went to the Anadolu Medeniyetleri Müzesi, and the Cengelhan Rahmi M. Koc Müzesi. All 3 are very close to one another, and worth a visit 🙂 In this post I’ll cover Ankara Kalesi, stick around for my posts about the other two 😀
First Stop: Discovering Ankara Kalesi (Castle) is definitely a must do, for sightseers and foodies alike.
The castle tower allows for an amazing view of the city, and really enables you to appreciate just how derelict the houses within the castle’s walls are. While enjoying a birds-eye view of the breadth of the city, the observer will inevitably look to these homes and will see how they are all equally falling apart, and will see the people who live there moving up and down the stairs, the smoke lifting from various crooked chimneys. The tower itself displays bland pieces of graffiti, and a few of the darker nooks and crannies smell distinctly of human waste. Despite this, school children are brought on excursions to connect with the history of what was once surely a regal place, the residents display the souvenirs they have to sell along the roads and on the walls, the tourists come to take in the sights of Turkiye’s capital city and imagine that they too are here to connect with the history saturated in the stones that remain.
For lunch, we went to the Ceritoglu Konagi. It’s tucked away from the main street so keep a look out for the sign and when you see it, turn left into the alleyway then right into the entrance of what actually is a house. This gorgeous restaurant is situated upstairs in a persons home, the decor is homely and traditional with the choice between floor seating or at a table with chairs. And the food!!! The food is DELICIOUS. We ordered the manti and icli kofte (ich-li kof-te) and honestly, it was THE BEST manti I’ve ever had, and probably ever will have!! Scroll down to have a look at the photo of the manti, it screams “eat me now!” 🙂
We finished off our day at Divan which is located just across the road from the main entrance to the castle. Definitely worth a visit for those with a sweet tooth or craving an exceptionally well-brewed Turkish coffee