With millions of students entering the first mid-term break of the 2023-2024 academic year, several of the country’s historic sites have experienced a high influx of visitors.
Following the nine-day break for nearly 20 million students, families took their children to explore Istanbul’s Dolmabahçe and Topkapı palaces and other historical sites, while museums in the capital Ankara and the western province of İzmir were also other places that witnessed a surge in the number of visitors.
In the Central Anatolian province of Aksaray, the Selime Cathedral and Ihlara Valley were also overcrowded with domestic tourists. These two places are considered the beginning of the Cappadocia region.
Tour guide Yusuf Dilek emphasizes that especially the fact that students are also on vacation has increased the intensity here.
“As you can see, there is a lot of density here. This density is a very good development not only for the regional economy but also for tourism in general,” he added.
“We welcome people from all over our country here. Visitors come from many parts of our country such as Izmir, Istanbul, Ankara and Trabzon,” Dilek noted.
Selime Cathedral attracts attention with its depictions of the Ascension of Jesus and the Virgin Mary, as well as being the largest cathedral in Cappadocia.
Another feature of the cathedral is that it is known as the place where clergymen in the region were trained. It is also known that the first loud mass was held in Selime Cathedral.
The rock-carved structures, most of which were built as churches, bear the traces of Byzantine art. The region welcomes local guests from many regions of Türkiye.
Visitors who come in caravans visit the cathedral and its cellars with interest and have their photos taken.
Elvan Otum, who came to visit with her children from the western province of Manisa, stated that she came to take her children for a tour due to the holiday.
“Because of the holiday, we came to show our children the beautiful places of our country, to show them, and to spend time having fun together. It is also very nice that there is intensity, it is very valuable that people are curious about the historical places of our country,” she said.
Source: Hurriyet Daily News