Sanliurfa Travel Guide

This content was last updated on 24.01.2024 22:20

Sanliurfa, Turkey's 7th largest city and 8th most populous city, has hosted many civilizations throughout history. For this reason, it is possible to say that Sanliurfa has a very rich content in terms of places to visit. Sanliurfa, also known as the "City of Prophets", is one of the cities where you can feel the unique mysterious atmosphere of the Southeastern Anatolia region.

Let's get to know Sanliurfa better, known as "Edessa" in ancient times.

Where is Sanliurfa

Sanliurfa is located in the Southeast Anatolia region. The city, which is in a strategically important position, is also bordered by Syria. Sanliurfa;

  • Adiyaman in the north
  • Diyarbakir in the northeast
  • To the east of Mardin
  • Gaziantep in the west
  • south of Syria


When to go to Sanliurfa

Sanliurfa, a southeastern Anatolian city, gets very hot in summer and the temperature can rise above 40 degrees. Therefore, if you are planning to visit Sanliurfa, it would be the right choice to arrange your trip according to the spring and autumn months.

How Many Days to Stay in Sanliurfa

The answer to this question will vary depending on the purpose of your trip. It is possible to complete your Sanliurfa trip in 2 days, but if you have time, we recommend you to spend at least 4 days visiting places close to Sanliurfa such as Göbeklitepe, Harran, Mount Nemrut and Halfeti.

You may also be interested in these contents

Adiyaman Travel Guide

Urban Transportation in Sanliurfa

We can say that the urban transportation system in Sanliurfa is quite developed and transportation is quite comfortable. Urban transportation is mostly provided by buses and minibuses. Buses operate between 05:45 - 23:30 and provide transportation to many points in the city. A card called "Urfa Card" is used in the city and you can buy this card and use public transportation vehicles. If you are a person who likes to walk, you can reach these areas by walking, as the places to visit in the city are close to the center and the center. If you are going to visit the places around Sanliurfa, as in the answer we gave to the question "How many days to stay", it may be the right choice for you to rent a car instead of public transportation.

Sanliurfa Places to Visit

1. Balikligol


Balikligol is at the top of the list of places to visit in Sanliurfa.

Balikligol, which is 150 meters long, 30 meters wide and 5 meters deep, takes its beauty from the story of the cruel rulers of its time, Nemrut and İbrahim. Abraham declared war on idolatry defended by Nemrut and broke the idols in Nemrut's palace. Thereupon, Nemrut ordered that Abraham be burned. The area where the lake is currently located was filled with wood and a big fire was lit and İbrahim was thrown into the fire from Şanlıurfa Castle. According to legend, fire turned into water and wood turned into fish. Since then the lake has been consecrated and the fish have not been touched. Today, there are many carp fish in the lake.

2. Aynzeliha Lake

Aynzeliha Lake

Aynzeliha Lake is a small lake in the Balıkgöl region, covering an area of 150 m2.

Aynzeliha Lake, meaning "the eye of Zeliha", is located just south of Balikligol, in front of the Urfa castle. Aynzeliha lake also has a story related to the story of Balikligol. According to rumors, Zeliha, daughter of Nemrut, is in love with İbrahim and is one of those who believe in him. Zeliha learns that İbrahim will be thrown into the fire by Nemrut's order and tells Nemrut that she believes in Abraham's religion. Thereupon, Zeliha is burned to death by being thrown into the fire on her father's orders. A lake made up of tears once again formed where Zeliha fell, and it is believed that Aynzeliha lake was formed.

3. Sanliurfa Castle

Sanliurfa Castle

Another place that should be visited in the city is Sanliurfa Castle, which is perhaps the most magnificent structure of the city. The castle, which is known to have been built by the Romans in 2000 BC, is located on Dambak Hill in the Balikligol region in the center of the city.

The Prophet we mentioned in the story of Balikligol. It is said that two stone columns, 17 meters high, in Sanliurfa Castle were used as catapults in the event of Abraham being thrown into the fire.

There is an entrance fee to the castle and as of 2022, the entrance fee is 15 TL. The castle, which can be visited free of charge with the Müzekart, is open to visitors until 19:00 in the summer season and until 17:00 in the winter season.

4. Cave Of Abraham & Dergah Mosque

Cave Of Abraham

Another of the most visited places in Sanliurfa is Hz. The cave where it is believed that Abraham was born.

Like Balikligol, this cave is also related to Nemrut. Nemrut had a dream one night and asked the astrologers what his dream meant. The astrologers translate the dream and tell Nemrut that a child born in that year will end his reign. Nemrut then orders that all male children born that year be killed. Hz. After hearing this news, Ibrahim's mother took shelter in a cave and Hz. She gives birth to Abraham in that cave. For exactly 7 years, Mr. He raises Abraham by hiding in this cave. As an additional information, let's also mention that the water coming out of this cave is considered the most healing water after Zamzam water.

Dergah Mosque in Hz. It is located right next to the cave where Abraham was born. Dergah mosque, also known as "Mevlid-i Halil Mosque", was named "Mevlid", that is, "Happy Birthday" for this reason.

These two points, which are important places for religious tourism in Sanliurfa, are open to visitors throughout the day and there is no entrance fee.

5. Harran Houses

Harran Houses

The first thing that comes to mind when you say Harran is of course the traditional Harran cupola houses. Thanks to its unique architectural structure and the materials used (terracotta, straw, rose oil, straw, and egg whites are used in its mortar), Harran houses are cool in summer and warm in winter. Harran houses have a structure that narrows gradually from the bottom up, and the height of the houses reaches 5 meters from the inside and was built with a series of 30-40 bricks. In 1979, "Harran Kümbet Evler" was registered as an archaeological and urban site.

6. Göbeklitepe


Gobeklitepe can't be missed when you come to Sanliurfa. Göbeklitepe, which has become more and more known in recent years, dates back to 12,000 years BC. It dates back to 10,000 years. Göbeklitepe, which is accepted as the starting point of history;

  • 7,000 years before Stonehenge in England,
  • 7,500 years before the Egyptian pyramids

It means it's built.

Göbeklitepe, which is considered to be the oldest temple in the world with this feature, is located near Örencik Village, 20 km from Sanliurfa center. Göbeklitepe, which has attracted great interest from many local and foreign tourists since the day it was discovered, was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2011. Excavations are still continuing in Göbeklitepe and 6 temples have been unearthed. It is thought that there are 20 temples in total.

Getting to Göbeklitepe is quite easy. You can easily reach Göbeklitepe by bus number 100 from Abide stop located in Sanliurfa city center.

Entrance to Göbeklitepe, which you can visit every day of the week between 09:00 - 18:30, is paid and 70 TL as of 2022. If you have a museum card, you can enter for free.

7. Halfeti


Halfeti is among the top places to see not only in Sanliurfa but also in Turkey.

Known as the "Sunken City", Halfeti is now divided into Old and New Halfeti. With the construction of the Birecik Dam in 2000, the area that was mostly flooded is called Old Halfeti, and the area where the settlements moved is called New Halfeti.

One of the things to do in Halfeti is to take a boat tour. You can explore the old settlements that were flooded with boat tours. Boat tours, where you can see places such as Savaşan village, Rumkale and the Great Mosque, take approximately 1.5 hours.

Share This Post

Comments (0)

There are no comments for this content yet.

Do you want to make the first comment?

Leave a Comment