Explore The Mediterranean coast and the Hatay
The largest Mediterranean port in Turkey, with a population of 1.5 million, MERSIN is the first of the three large cities that gird the Ceyhan delta. It’s a modern harbour city that – aside from its regular ferry connections to Cyprus – is almost entirely without interest, despite being inhabited since Hittite times. Until the beginning of the twentieth century the settlement was little more than a squalid fishing hamlet. However, over the last century rapid growth and industrialization, coupled with Mersin’s role as an international free-trade zone, have turned it into a model, if soulless, example of contemporary Turkish urban planning.
The only real diversion is the local museum on Atatürk Caddesi. Housing a small but well-presented collection of local archeological finds from Neolithic times to the Byzantine era, especially notable are some Roman clay sarcophagi, some with lift-off, and others with sliding, lids. Adjacent to the museum is a substantial Greek Orthodox church, in a walled compound which is also home to a family of caretakers who, if not too busy, will show you the interior.Read More