September 22, 2019

Hatay The City of Tolerance


Hatay is a province in southeastern part of Mediterranean Turkey, bordering Syria. The administrative capital is Antakya and the other major city in the province is the port city of Iskenderun (Alexandretta).


Settled since the early Bronze Age, Hatay was once part of the Akkadian Empire, then the Amorite Kingdom of  Yamhad  an  Mitannis , then a succession of Hittites, the Neo-Hittite “Hattena” people that later gave the modern province of Hatay its name, then the Assyrians and Persians. The region was the center of the Hellenistic Seleucid empire. Since, 64 BC the city of Antioch became an important regional center of the Roman Empire.

The area was conquered by the Rashidun Caliphate in 638 and later it came under the control of the  Ummayad  and Abbasid Arab dynasties. Hatay was captured from the Crusaders by the  Mameluks  in 1268. On 29 June 1939, following a referendum, Hatay became a Turkish province.

Famous Cuisine of Hatay

This province of Turkey is very famous for its delightful cuisines. Famous dishes include Sefer Kitelli, Apple Kofte, Spinach Borony, Antakya Style Kofte, Sheikh Mualla, Eggplant Dessert, Hettus (Purslane Salad), Cumin Kebab, Pumpkin Boran, Antakya Style Lamb Liver Cartlak Kebab, Hatay Pan, Hatay Mantı, Zahter Salad, Şukuriye, Sini Wu, Pepper with Walnut, Kunefe, Salad Salad, Kibbeh, Meat Kaytaz Pastry and Sembusak.

Moreover, Hatay is also famous for its kababs including Cooker kebab, Sini kebab, Arab kebab, Cumin kebab and Antakya style lamb liver Cartlak kebab and tray kebab.

Historical Places

Similarly, Hatay has sundry prominent historical places including castles, museums and mosques. Well-known include  Sarıseki Castle, Hatay Archeology Museum, Koz Castle (Kürşat Castle), Ulu Mosque, Şalan Castle, St. Pierre Church, Harbiye (Defne), Payas Castle, Antakya Castle and Walls, Demirkapı, Cin Tower, Trajan Aqueducts, Mancılık Castle, History of Cevlik (Seleukeia Pieria), Titus (Vespasianus) Tunnel, Darbısak Castle, Haron (Charonion) Reliefs, Bakras Castle.

Hatay’s Strength

Hatay is the most southerly city. Livelihood flourishes here by industry, agriculture and port. It is also the port city. Iskenderun iron and steel factory also brings significant employment to the city. Citrus fruits and legumes are grown abundantly in the city. You can eat the famous Alexander and Künefe from everywhere. Alexander is not the classic Alexander, the portions are larger and the bread is small. Transportation is provided by road, rail, sea and air.

Popular Tourists Attractions

Hatay is an inexhaustible treasure house of history and centre of civilization. Mosaics adding an aura of great value to a center where all faiths meet together with a culinary art worth exploring. If one visits Hatay province of Turkey he should go to the places mentioned because top attractions for tourists specially culturevultures out there are Iskenderun Sahil, Vakifli Village, Habibi Neccar Mosque, Old city of Antakya Vespasianus Titus Tunnel and Uzun Carsi.

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