After crazy Istanbul, Ankara was for me like a breath of fresh air. First of all there wasn't any traffic on the road (for me it's a huge advantage). Second moment - beggars. I didn't meet any Syrian refugees on the streets. Maybe did they find their own Paradise in Istanbul?
Turkish capital conditionally was divided in o two parts: modern and old Ankara. We decided to stay in Meyra Palace Hotel, which was located in modern part of the city. Although that hotel was pretty nice, but after one day I got bored, and wanted to discover historical attractions. Unfortunately, there were not much such kind of places. People come in Ankara to study, to meet with relatives, or to make business. I cannot call Ankara as a touristical place.
However, we found few interesting sights:
· Anıtkabir. Famous and very important place for Turkish people. There was buried Mustafa Kemal - founder of Turkish Republic. This construction was created in 1953, and after Ataturk's remains were transferred there. I was wondering about one thing: as I know big leader died in 1938. So, where was his body all this time? Later I learnt that his remains were kept in ethnographical museum in Ankara.
Anitkabir is not just a building. It is a big complex, which includes few halls, park, museum, huge square. Mind to visit this holy place came to my head in 10th of November. In that time I didn't know yet that Ataturk died in that date. Our hotel was not so far from Anitkabir, but road there, parking took long time. There were too much visitors, who came to commemorate of EX Turkish leader.
While going to Hall of Honor
We spent in the queue more than one hour, and after we entered the Hall of Honor. I couldn't inspect it good, since crowd pushed me from everywhere. People were unpatient, nervous and sometimes very rude. After checking Ataturk's tomb we moved downstairs. There was a museum, with statues, stands, but because of crowd I didn't have any wish to read anything.
In the same floor was a restaurant. In that day it was full of people. I think, they didn't want to eat, just tried to hide from a crowd.
· Hissar fortress. The oldest historical sight in Ankara. First brick of this construction was laid in VI century. Hittites chose special place for location: top of the hill with good overview. It gave them a chance to prevent an attack and organize a good defense. With a time fortress was enlarged. The last, who attended this process were Byzantines.
While going to this building I regretted that there weren't any sneakers in my bag. Definitely women, who will decide to visit Hissar fortress shouldn't wear heels! We walked about 30 minutes, and after finally entered inside. We didn't pay for entrance. There were live outside of the gates. Many children who came back from the school; street vendors who sold souvenirs, carpets, dishes walked in that area.
Local restaurants attracted with their buildings from Ottoman times. Before there were usual houses from clay and straw. Now these are places, which serves traditional Turkish food.
We directly moved to the Akkale - highest point of castle. While I was climbing there, I was sorry that I wore dress. Pants in such situations would be more topical. Anyway, after I arrived to my destination I was very impressed: I could see all beauty of the Turkish capital. I didn't watch this panorama long time: because of height I had a turning, and my knees started to shake.
We tried to find orthodox church, which was built in this area in XII century, but we couldn't. I am very sorry about this: I heard it's a beautiful place.
In my opinion, Hissar fortress is one the most attractive castle in whole Turkey. It is old, large and well preserved till nowadays.
· Middle East Technical University (ODTÜ). For me it was real cultural sight. This University is one of the most popular university in Turkey, and occupies large area. On the way to the main campus we passed a forest. This is common thing for Turkish Universities.
Housings there were old (from 1956-1960) and gloomy. But everywhere was clean and green. Students were relaxed and cheerful. I saw another part of Turkey, not conservative one, but modern. I remembered my studentship, and became so excited, that forgot to take any photo of this wonderful place.
So, Ankara is not a historical centre of Turkey. However, it's good because it keeps city away from tourists. My first meeting with Turkish capital was good. I spent good time there and got many positive emotions. I hope to back there in future, since I want to discover buildings of higher authorities and to take few shots from the famous Tower Atakule.