Once a Greek trading port, today Trabzon treats visitors to colourful bazaars, atmospheric tea houses and sumptuous Turkish cuisine. There's a melting pot of history and culture to soak up in its museums, markets and landmarks, as it was under the rule of the Cimmerians, Medes, Hellenes, Byzantines and Turks.
Things to do in Trabzon
The Aya Sofya Mosque is Trabzon's signature landmark. It was built in the 1200s and showcases a mix of Georgian and Seljuk architecture. Inside you'll be dazzled by intricate wall paintings and beautiful mosaic floors. After strolling around the church, why not enjoy a snack at the on-site cafe?
If you're searching for souvenirs, head to Bedesten, Trabzon's main bazaar. The covered marketplace is housed under a soaring dome and has been selling trinkets since the Ottoman era. Inside you can pick up hand-loomed carpets, mosaic lanterns, Turkish delight and sweet apple tea.
Venture inland and you'll find gems like the Ataturk Mansion. The handsome 19th-century manor is tucked away in a leafy neighbourhood around five kilometres from Trabzon. You can stroll around the formal gardens, tour the house and view Ataturk memorabilia, including a map of the WWI Dardanelles campaign carved into a writing desk.
Foodies can eat their way through a smorgasbord of courtyard cafes, garden restaurants and traditional Turkish taverns. Kalender is a local favourite, with trendy decor and an inspired menu of classic dishes, while Yesil Mandira is a gourmet deli where you can stock up on dried fruit, spicy sandwich meats and artisan cheese.
Getting around Trabzon
Thanks to quiet streets and a laid-back atmosphere, Trabzon is easy to get around on foot. Local minibuses, also known as “dolmuses”, also service the city, along with taxis.