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Small Cappadocia: Sille awaits tourists under snow in Turkey’s Konya

Small Cappadocia: Sille awaits tourists under snow in Turkey’s Konya

KONYA (AA): Once upon a time, the Sille neighborhood was the home of several different cultures and civilizations, living in harmony in the forgotten ages of ancient history. Today, the neighborhood with its pristine historical texture welcomes visitors from every culture to the once Seljuk district of central Turkey’s Konya.

The neighborhood, which was one of the important centers of the early Christian period and has hosted many civilizations with its 5,000-year history, draws attention with its texture mainly composed of historical houses.

Sille, one of the places most frequented by the people of Konya, became an attraction center for tourists with intense social spaces thanks to its transformation not long ago.

Snow blankets hills with caves in the Sille neighborhood in Konya, Turkey, March 19, 2022. (AA Photo)
Snow blankets hills with caves in the Sille neighborhood in Konya, Turkey, March 19, 2022. (AA Photo)

After the rehabilitation works of the creek connecting to Sille Dam, the historical quarter with charming social venues opening one after the other entered the sightseeing route of local and foreign tourists.

The neighborhood attracts visitors with its Karataş Mosque, Hagia Elena Church, Devil’s Bridge, Time Museum, Turkish baths and many more interesting locales.

Born and raised in the historical neighborhood, Celalettin Bulut told Anadolu Agency (AA) that they had been living in the Sille district for three generations and had been working in the production of jug pottery.

Stating that the neighborhood was a place where Muslims and non-Muslims lived together before the population exchange, Bulut said that communities from different cultures maintained very good relations here for years.

The sun shines upon the Sille neighborhood in Konya, Turkey, March 19, 2022. (AA Photo)
Snow blankets the Sille neighborhood in Konya, Turkey, March 19, 2022. (AA Photo)

Bulut stated that there were churches and mosques in the neighborhood.

“There is (the) Hagia Elena Church that was built in A.D. 327 … (After restoration works) this place became a location that should be visited and seen. With the promotion of this area, we believe that local and foreign tourists will visit quite frequently,” he said.

“This place is especially beautiful in winter. Foreign tourists say that this place gives the impression of a small Cappadocia, especially because of its caves. In winter, the density (of tourists) decreases. I think that historical houses and places can be visited and be worthwhile in terms of photography,” he explained.

A car drives by a creek in the Sille neighborhood in Konya, Turkey, March 19, 2022. (AA Photo)
A car drives by a creek in the Sille neighborhood in Konya, Turkey, March 19, 2022. (AA Photo)

Ibrahim Duran, one of the visitors, said that he often visited the neighborhood, which he considers very valuable with its 5,000-year history.

Duran pointed out that Sille was a very special place with its historical and touristic features.

“There are many places to visit such as churches, time museums and caves. Also, this place attracts us with its cleaner air compared to the city center. It is also important for tourists that the renovation works here are done while preserving the historical texture,” he added.

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