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Şanlıurfa, the city of prophets as it’s known by many, is located in the southeast of Turkey. While the original name of the city was Urfa, it was given the title ''Şanlı'' in 1984. It was an act of appreciation for the effort and bravery they showed during The Turkish War of Independence. Therefore, the name of the city has been Şanlıurfa ever since, which can be translated as ‘’Glorious Urfa’’. This beautiful city promises its visitors an extraordinary trip. Around every corner is something worth exploring. In this sense, hotels in Şanlıurfa offer a variety of accommodation types for those who want to learn more about the impressive history and culture of Şanlıurfa, experience the mystical atmosphere, and taste delicious local foods. Before you book hotels in Şanlıurfa, all you need to do is decide what you expect from this glorious city.
Must See Places in Şanlıurfa
- Göbeklitepe: The first thing that comes to mind when you think of Şanlıurfa is probably Göbeklitepe. Ever since it was discovered, this ancient site has become a buzzing tourist attraction spot. Today, according to many archeologists and scientists, Göbeklitepe is where the history of humankind started ages ago. In this sense, it can be said that artifacts and architectural ruins found in the site are regarded highly. After you take a glimpse at this spectacular old monument, you will admire Şanlıurfa even more. To see this breathtaking site, you may want to consider staying at hotels in Göbeklitepe Şanlıurfa.
- Şanlıurfa Archaeology Museum: It should be visited by those who want to understand the profound history of Şanlıurfa. Since there are quite many historical artifacts to see in the museum, it is recommended to spare at least 2 or 3 hours. Even if you’re not a history enthusiast, the findings from the Göbeklitepe to the present day displayed in chronological order will capture your attention.
- Şanlıurfa Castle: It is not every day you come across intact historical structures. Yet, Şanlıurfa Castle has remained intact from the ancient period to this time. Due to its proximity to the center of Urfa, you should add it to your Şanlıurfa travel list.
- Selahaddin Eyyubi Mosque: Believed to be built in the early 19th century, this building, which was originally a church, was later restored and used as a mosque.
- Halfeti: Halfeti is one of the most touristic districts of Şanlurfa for a reason. You can take a boat tour on the Euphrates River in Halfeti and see the beauties of this place on the river. In addition, you can find the chance to see the Karagül plant, which grows only in Halfeti in the world.
- Kızılkoyun Necropolis: It is free to visit this historical place where you will see stone tombs and witness the cultural heritage of the region once again. It is open to visitors everyday from 8 am to 10 pm.
- Balıklı Lake: This lake is regarded as sacred due to the religious story related to it. The spiritual vibe around this historic lake is undeniable.
What to Eat in Şanlıurfa?
Before digging into tastes of Şanlıurfa, be informed that here, you will get to taste local foods not only at restaurants but also at Şanlıurfa hotels during your stay. Şanlıurfa cuisine with mouth-watering dishes has flavors that will definitely surprise you. It has a plethora of options that will tempt you not only with its local main courses but also with appetizers and street foods that are prepared only with freshly picked vegetables. Most of the dishes are prepared with meat and these dishes are mostly quite spicy and rich in tomato paste. According to many, Şanlıurfa is the homeland of kebab and lahmacun. Urfa kebab and liver kebab are two interesting local tastes you should also give a try. Since eating meat for breakfast is quite common here, during your trip, you may have kebab as the first meal of the day. Despite being famous for its meat dishes, Şanlıurfa cuisine also has a special fish dish that you can taste only in this city. In Turkey, this freshwater fish can be found only in the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers. Additionally, during your visit to Şanlıurfa, you need to try çiğ köfte as a snack. Çiğ köfte is traditionally made with raw minced meat. However, with the decision of the Ministry of Health, Çiğ köfte is prepared and sold without using raw minced meat.
Some of the famous local dishes you can eat in Şanlıurfa are;
- Buttermilk soup
- Pıt Pıt
Şanlıurfa Accommodation Options
Şanlıurfa welcomes visitors from everywhere and all year round. The most important piece of information for those who want to visit the city is that the temperature rises above 45 degrees during the summer months. For this reason, it will be more comfortable to go in the spring and autumn seasons in order to travel comfortably in Şanlıurfa. Accommodation in Şanlıurfa will amaze you as there are plenty of options to choose among. Therefore, you will easily find places that fit your budget and explore the beauties of the city as you wish. Like many tourists, if touring the city center is the number one thing on your list, then you should check the hotels in Şanlıurfa city center. That way you can see the attractions near the city center.But as they successfully reflect the architectural characteristics of the region, boutique hotels in Şanlıurfa can also be great picks to experience the culture.These hotels organize activities in order to better introduce the traditional culture to their visitors. Sıra Nights are probably the most well-known among all cultural activities. Basically, it is a traditional entertainment of friends meeting around a rich table and enjoying their time.
Şanlıurfa Hotels Prices
Şanlıurfa hotels have various types of pricing that will suit every traveler's budget. Hotels charge according to the services and facilities they offer. Some of the factors that determine the prices of hotels can be listed as the quality of service, amenities, the theme of the hotel, and similar other criteria. If the only criterion you have is luxury, then you should check the best hotels in Şanlıurfa. For those who travel with family, family hotels in Şanlıurfa have excellent facilities that will provide home comfort. Also, you can consider making an early reservation to stay at cheap hotels in Şanlıurfa. Not only will you pay less than you imagine, but you will be able to benefit from the usual hotel services.
How to Get to Şanlıurfa?
Transportation to Şanlıurfa definitely responds to the demand of people who are interested in this historical and cultural city. Therefore, you won’t deal with any problems while traveling to Şanlıurfa. Intercity bus travel and air travel are the most preferred options to reach the city. As you can predict, bus travel is a cheaper option. Traveling by plane, on the other hand, is more practical, especially for passengers coming from cities like Istanbul, Ankara, and Izmir. In case you're planning a more budget-friendly journey, you may want to check connecting flights as there might be deals. After arriving at Şanlıurfa GAP airport, transportation to the city is provided by airport shuttles. Also, you may consider checking the car rental options available at the airport.
Şanlıurfa - Travel by Bus
İstanbul - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 650
Ankara - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 449
Gaziantep - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 149
İzmir - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 700
Antalya - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 550
Diyarbakır - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 180
Adana - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 220
Mersin - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 240
Kayseri - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 280
Bodrum - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 950
Konya - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 450
Bursa - ŞanlıurfaBus TicketsTL 739
Şanlıurfa - Travel by Plane
İstanbul Anadolu - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 1,125
İstanbul - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 1,339
İzmir - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 1,697
Ankara - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 927
İstanbul Avrupa - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 1,339
Antalya - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 1,681
Bodrum - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 1,660
Dalaman - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 1,749
Bursa - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 2,275
Samsun - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 1,582
Trabzon - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 1,676
Balıkesir - ŞanlıurfaFlight TicketTL 1,708