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REGIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT Konya


Konya, one of Turkey's oldest continuously inhabited cities. 5th largest city, the capital of the Seljuk Turks. One of the great cultural centers of Turkey during that period of cultural, political and religious growth. The striking green-tiled mausoleum of Mevlana (Mevlana Celaleddin Rumi founded a Sufi Order known in the West as the Whirling Dervishes,a great Turkish poet and mystic) is Konya's most famous building. Sultanhan Caravansary is another famous one,on the way from Konya to Aksaray 40 km / 25 mi before the city. It is the largest of all Seljuk caravansaries in Anatolia. These are public buildings built on the caravan routes for trade in normal times and for military use in times of emergencies. A caravan could walk for about a day, and would not want to continue at night time. In these buildings, Seljuks provided the caravans with every possible service such as places to sleep, hamams, mosques, doctors and veterinarians, kitchens, coffeehouses, libraries. Today, there are approximately 120 caravansaries still standing in Anatolia. The Karatay Medrese, now a museum, displays bold and striking Seljuk ceramics. Sille, 10 km north of Konya, has the Byzantine Aya Eleni church and several rock chapels with frescoes.






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