"Cumalikizik" Cumalikizik by mvtouring

Cumalikizik Travel Guide: 14 reviews and 18 photos

With extra time to spare in Bursa, it's worth taking a trip out to the rural Ottoman village of Cumalikizik, 10km east on the Ankara road – easily reached by any dolmuþ heading towards Inegöl from the dolmuþ stop on Inönü Caddesi. The journey takes around twenty minutes. Documents date the village to 1685, but it is thought to be considerably older, possibly established by the Turkish horseback tribes that flowed into the region during the formative years of the Ottoman principality.
Set on the lower slopes of Uludað, the cobbled streets are full of dilapidated buildings, leaning brokenly into each other. The Cumalikizik residents once made a living from growing chestnuts, but a virulent disease annihilated the plantation that surrounded the village. Now, raspberries and blackberries are grown instead, but as the young have gradually drifted into Bursa in pursuit of work, Cumalikizik's population has shrunk. The village has pinned its hopes on tourism to survive, promoting itself as a living museum, and after the busy streets of Bursa, Cumalikizik certainly makes a peaceful place to spend a couple of hours, drinking tea and watching the inhabitants gossip on the steps of their decaying houses.
The most prominent sights on arrival are the two enormous plane trees in the square at the entrance to the village where the dolmuþ drops you. Following the alleys into the village, you'll find that the roads are only wide enough for pedestrians and pack animals – some are so narrow that two people cannot pass each other – and there is a myriad of fascinating alleyways, dead-ends and cobbled squares to explore. The ground and first floors of the houses harbour the storerooms, stables and inner courtyards; upstairs, the living quarters present bay or lattice windows and wide tiled eaves overhanging the street. Many of the existing original double-front doors are studded with large-headed nails and wrought-iron strips. Neither the hamam nor the mosque can be dated with any accuracy, though it's thought that they are around three hundred years old. There is a tiny museum, with no particular set opening-times – if it's locked, ask anyone to fetch the curator. Inside, there's a ramshackle, but well-meaning, collection of village implements, from old radios, door-knockers and swords, to a pile of rusting farming equipment in the garden. Around the main square at the entrance of the village are a couple of teahouses with outside tables and a small bakery selling tasty börek.

  • Last visit to Cumalikizik: Dec 2008
  • Intro Written Oct 21, 2009
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Reviews (10)

Comments (3)

  • Oct 27, 2009 at 1:19 AM

    Looks like time stood still here, what a lovely village. Hope it stays that way for some time to come

  • morne's Profile Photo
    Oct 27, 2009 at 12:37 AM

    you have been busy girlfriend! Very interesting page, looks like stepping back onto the past almost.

  • globetrott's Profile Photo
    Oct 21, 2009 at 11:12 AM

    an interesting side-step off the beaten path, thanks for sharing !


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