"Safranbolu - Well-Preserved Ottoman Town" Top 5 Page for this destination Safranbolu by WulfstanTraveller

Safranbolu Travel Guide: 98 reviews and 314 photos

Safranbolu is an incredible place, with a largely intact, vry extensive and well-preserved old town.

Safranbolu once grew very wealthy on the safffron trade and its very name appears to mean "Abundance of Saffron." The town, unlike Bursa or other cities, ultimately languished and became a bit of a backwater, not growing very much. Thankfully, what growth did occur also occurred on the fringe of the old town, instead of having the old town torn up to be replaced with new development.

The result is that Safranbolu is largely unique in possessing a very large, extensive, and mostly intact, and unaltered Ottoman old town. This resulted in the wotn receiving UNESCO world heritage status which, combined with recent growth in the tourist industry for the area, has really helped preserve the town and allow it to be renovated and restored to its former glory. Many houses are still in need of repair, a few being pretty dilapidated, but it is largely in excellent shape. Even the streets are still irregular cobblesones in the old part of town.

The old town mostly straddles a gorge, filling in the base along a creek and extending up the sides, giving it a very picturesque setting enhanced by the beautiful, often very large old Ottoman houses, typically plastered half-timber buildings.

Cafes, sweet shops, bakeries, and gift shops abound. It's touristy, but not overly so, probably thanks in large part to the fact that even now most tourists who come here are other Turks, rather than foreigners.

The beautiful area is full of charm and atmosphere and Safranbolu is one of my favourite towns anywhere

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Bueatiful, well-preserved old town, great facilities, not to touristy
  • Cons:None, really
  • In a nutshell:A wonderful, charming place to visit
  • Last visit to Safranbolu: Feb 2009
  • Intro Updated Mar 5, 2009
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Reviews (13)

Comments (1)

  • Arkeolog's Profile Photo
    Mar 5, 2009 at 11:55 PM

    SAFRANBOLU is one of my historical destination for walking, photographing and relaxing. Good page, nice photos and useful tips. all the best.Bora

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