Just 149 km away from Istanbul, Bursa is a city with full of surprises! This rich history city was the first capital city of the Ottoman Empire and it was the city where the Ottomans started a small emirate! But not only its rich history made the city famous, but also its silk, peach, ski resorts, chestnut and thermal baths makes the city perfect place for a nice weekend getaway. To reach this fun city you can fly to Istanbul and take a bus from there! You can also use ferry since it is only 20 km away from the Marmara Sea. To explore the city, you can use the extensive bus lines or use the metro! If you want to know what you can do in this amazing city, here is your guide!
Uludağ is one of the highest mountain in Turkey and also an extinct volcano which makes it the most interesting wintersports resort and hiking destination! In ancient times Uludağ was used as a hermitage to Christian monks and at the Ottoman Empire times, they harvested ice from the mountain and took to the Istanbul's Topkapı Palace, since there was no refrigators at that time. Uludağ has everything since it has nature; amazing forests, hills, and also perfect resorts for wintersports where you can take skiing lessons, snowboard, ski, hike, and eat delicious food on the top of the mountain.
Uludağ has lots of tracks between the trees which makes it perfect for everytone since it has a different level of hardness. You can always use teleski and rent equipments for around 5 Euros for a day!
You can use cable car to go up the mountain and mesmerize by the view all the way up to there! It's definitely so peaceful to watch nature, unless you are scared of height aka Acrophobia :D On your way up there, you can also see a huge centuries-old plane tree!
Since Uludağ is an extinct volcano, it created the perfect environment for thermal baths with mineral rich waters. If you are visiting Bursa, you should experience the traditional thermal turkish bath since it is one of kind! The mineral water boils up from below to comfort you and nurture your skin! As a tradition you should get the best rubdown (kese) to get rid of the dead skin cells and a massage just to relax your muscles and pamper yourself! After that, you can relax on the comfy bed while wrapped around towels like a Greek Gods or Goddesses! As I said before, treat yoo self!
Ulucami or the "great mosque" of Bursa was built in 1399 which is a great example of how the architecture was back in the early Ottoman period. It is also known for its calligraphic panels that on its walls and columns, but not only that also the fountain within the mosque which creates the most peaceful environment.
The Green Mosque contains the most beautiful tomb completely covered by tiles inside and out! If you are into tiles and mosaics, it is a definitely must visit place! Not only that, it also has a legendary fountain inside the prayer area and tea gardens with amazing views over the Bursa and Uludağ!
Silk is one of the major industry in Bursa over centuries. If you want to buy silk, you have to visit Koza Han (Silk Bazaar), which is very close to the Ulucami, dating way back to 1491!
With the little ones, you can not only enjoy fun skiing lessons but also hang out with the cute animals in the Bursa Zoo!
Cumalıkızık is more than 700 year old village, where you can find 265 centuries-old half timbered houses which is on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 2000!
Don't leave Bursa before you taste the legendary dish : İskender! İskender is made of roasted, sliced lamb spread atop diced bread pieces, topped with tomato sauce, served with yoghurt. It is the traditional dish of Bursa and you can taste this delicious dish anywhere in here. Yum!
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My name is Alara Benlier, I am Turkish but currently living in Germany! I share my experiences in Germany, Turkey and the Netherlands!