1. Gaziantep, often referred to as the culinary capital of Turkey, is a city steeped in history and culture. It boasts a unique blend of ancient ruins, traditional markets, and mouthwatering gastronomy. With its well-preserved historical sites, charming old town, and renowned cuisine, Gaziantep attracts visitors from around the world.
  2. History & Culture: Gaziantep has a fascinating history that dates back thousands of years. It has been influenced by numerous civilizations, including the Hittites, Romans, Byzantines, and Ottomans. The city is home to remarkable archaeological sites, such as the ancient city of Zeugma and the Gaziantep Castle, which offer glimpses into its past.

The local culture is deeply rooted in traditions, crafts, and hospitality. Gaziantep is known for its exquisite handwoven carpets, copperware, and traditional crafts like marbling and glassblowing. Exploring the city’s museums, such as the Gaziantep Museum of Archaeology, allows visitors to immerse themselves in its rich cultural heritage.

  1. Weather and Best Time to Visit: Gaziantep experiences a Mediterranean climate, characterized by hot and dry summers and mild, rainy winters. The best time to visit is during the spring (April to June) and autumn (September to November) when the weather is pleasant and ideal for exploring the city’s outdoor attractions.
  2. How to Reach: Gaziantep is well-connected domestically and internationally. The city has an international airport, Gaziantep Oğuzeli Airport, with regular flights to major cities in Turkey and various international destinations. Additionally, Gaziantep can be reached by road or rail from other cities in Turkey.
  3. Local Transportation: Within Gaziantep, travelers can navigate the city using various transportation options. The most common mode of transportation is the public bus system, which covers the entire city. Taxis and ride-hailing services are also available for convenient and comfortable transportation. Walking is a great way to explore the city center and its narrow, winding streets.


Must-visit tourist attractions in Gaziantep:

  1. Gaziantep Castle: This ancient fortress offers panoramic views of the city and houses a museum displaying artifacts from different periods.
  2. Zeugma Mosaic Museum: Home to the world’s largest collection of Roman mosaics, this museum showcases intricate and well-preserved mosaic artworks.
  3. Gaziantep Archaeological Museum: It houses a vast collection of archaeological artifacts, including statues, coins, and pottery, providing insight into Gaziantep’s history.
  4. Copperware Bazaar: A vibrant market where you can find beautifully crafted copper items, from utensils to decorative pieces.
  5. Hasan Süzer House Museum: A well-preserved traditional mansion showcasing the lifestyle and traditions of Gaziantep’s wealthy families.
  6. Gaziantep Zoo: A family-friendly attraction featuring a wide variety of animal species, including lions, bears, and birds.
  7. Tahtalı Mosque: A stunning Ottoman-era mosque known for its intricate tile work and architecture.
  8. Gaziantep War Museum: Commemorating Gaziantep’s resistance during the Turkish War of Independence, the museum exhibits artifacts and documents from the era.
  9. Oğuzeli Carpet Museum: Dedicated to the art of carpet weaving, the museum displays exquisite carpets and provides insights into the craft’s history.
  10. Kurtuluş Mosque: A beautiful mosque known for its intricate woodwork and peaceful atmosphere.

Gaziantep Castle
Gaziantep Castle

Must-do activities in Gaziantep:

  1. Explore the Historic City Center: Wander through the narrow streets of Gaziantep’s old town, lined with traditional houses, cafes, and shops.
  2. Taste Gaziantep Cuisine: Indulge in the city’s renowned cuisine, including mouthwatering kebabs, baklava, and traditional dishes like “lahmacun” and “katmer.”
  3. Take a Culinary Tour: Join a food tour to discover the local culinary delights, visiting markets, restaurants, and bakeries.
  4. Learn Traditional Crafts: Engage in workshops to learn traditional crafts like carpet weaving, marbling, and copperware making.
  5. Visit the Gaziantep City Museum: Learn about the city’s history, cultural heritage, and traditions through interactive exhibits and displays.
  6. Attend a Traditional Music Performance: Experience the rich musical traditions of Gaziantep through live performances of local folk music.
  7. Explore the Gaziantep Zoo: Spend a day exploring the zoo and observing various animal species in a natural setting.
  8. Enjoy Turkish Coffee: Visit a traditional coffee house and savor a cup of authentic Turkish coffee, a significant part of Turkish culture.
  9. Attend Cultural Festivals: Check the city’s calendar for festivals and events celebrating Gaziantep’s culture, food, and art.
  10. Experience the Hamam Ritual: Relax and rejuvenate at a traditional Turkish bath, enjoying a steam bath, massage, and traditional scrub.

Turkey Tours

For fun and entertainment parks or adventure parks, Gaziantep offers:

  1. Mavi Su Aquapark: A popular water park featuring thrilling water slides, pools, and entertainment for all ages.
  2. Forum Gaziantep Shopping Mall: Besides shopping, the mall offers a range of entertainment options, including a cinema, bowling alley, and arcades.
  3. Ataturk Culture Park: A green space ideal for picnics, walks, and outdoor activities, with children’s play areas and sports facilities.
  4. Science and Technology Center: An interactive center where visitors can explore scientific exhibits and participate in educational programs.

Science and Technology Center
Science and Technology Center

Popular dishes and drinks

  1. Gaziantep Kebab: Indulge in the city’s famous kebabs, including “Ali Nazik,” “Cag Kebab,” and “Yuvalama.”
  2. Baklava: Taste the rich and sweet pastry made with layers of filo dough, nuts, and syrup.
  3. Lahmacun: Enjoy the thin and crispy flatbread topped with minced meat, vegetables, and herbs.
  4. Katmer: A traditional Gaziantep pastry filled with pistachios or clotted cream, often enjoyed for breakfast or dessert.
  5. Antep Ezmesi: A spicy paste made from ground red peppers, tomatoes, garlic, and various spices, typically served as a meze.
  6. Turkish Tea: Sip on a glass of traditional Turkish tea, an integral part of Turkish culture.
  7. Ayran: A refreshing yogurt-based drink, perfect for quenching your thirst on a hot day.
  8. Şıllık: A traditional Gaziantep dessert made with shredded phyllo dough, syrup, and walnuts.
  9. Menengiç Coffee: Sample this unique regional coffee made from roasted wild pistachios.
  10. Gaziantep Wines: Discover the local wineries and taste Gaziantep’s unique wines, known for their distinct flavors.


Restaurants and bars:

  1. Imam Çağdaş: A renowned restaurant serving authentic Gaziantep cuisine in a traditional setting.
  2. Tahmis Kahvesi: A historic coffee house where you can enjoy traditional Turkish coffee and sweets.
  3. İmam Çağdaş Muhallebicisi: A dessert shop famous for its selection of Turkish puddings and sweet treats.
  4. Hisarönü Meyhane: A traditional meyhane (tavern) where you can experience Turkish meze and enjoy live music.
  5. Café Ceri: A charming café offering a range of hot and cold beverages, as well as pastries and light meals.
  6. Bayazhan Gaziantep Mutfağı: A restaurant specializing in Gaziantep cuisine, known for its rich flavors and traditional dishes.
  7. Antik Kahve: A cozy café serving Turkish coffee and a variety of delicious pastries and desserts.
  8. Bereket Döner: A popular spot for enjoying döner kebabs, a classic Turkish street food.
  9. Gaziantep Söyleşi: A restaurant offering a mix of traditional Gaziantep dishes and international cuisine.
  10. Köşebaşı: A well-known Turkish restaurant chain serving a variety of grilled meats and traditional Turkish dishes.


In terms of nightlife, Gaziantep offers a vibrant scene with various bars and clubs where you can enjoy music, dancing, and entertainment. Some popular venues include:

  1. Haci BABA Meyhanesi: A lively meyhane offering live music, traditional Turkish meze, and a vibrant atmosphere.
  2. Vavotek: A popular bar known for its live music performances and DJ sets, attracting a young and energetic crowd.
  3. Beyazhan Teras: A rooftop bar with panoramic views of the city, offering a relaxed atmosphere and a range of beverages.
  4. Bistro Hayal Kahvesi: A cozy café-bar hosting live music events, including jazz, blues, and Turkish pop performances.
  5. Nizam-i Alem: A stylish bar and club where you can dance to a mix of international and Turkish music.

Some popular shopping destinations:

  1. Zincirli Bedesten: An ancient covered market where you can find traditional crafts, textiles, and souvenirs.
  2. Gümrük Han: A historic caravanserai converted into a shopping complex, offering a variety of shops selling carpets, jewelry, and antiques.
  3. Gaziantep City Center: Explore the bustling streets of the city center, lined with shops and boutiques selling clothing, accessories, and local products.
  4. Forum Gaziantep Shopping Mall: A modern mall with a wide range of international and local brands, as well as entertainment options.
  5. Bakırcılar Çarşısı: A bazaar specializing in copperware, where you can find beautifully crafted copper items, including pots, trays, and decorations.
  6. Karatarla Antiques Market: A vibrant market where you can browse and purchase antique furniture, jewelry, and unique collectibles.
  7. Yemek Büfe Pasajı: A food market offering a variety of local produce, spices, and traditional Gaziantep ingredients.
  8. Arasta Bazaar: A traditional market known for its Turkish delight and other sweet treats, as well as spices and local products.

Gaziantep is home to several museums and educational institutions that offer insights into the city’s history, culture, and arts. Some notable ones include:

  1. Gaziantep Museum of Archaeology: A museum housing a diverse collection of archaeological artifacts from Gaziantep and its surrounding areas.
  2. Bayazhan Gaziantep City Museum: A museum dedicated to Gaziantep’s history, featuring exhibits on the city’s culture, architecture, and traditions.
  3. Gaziantep War Museum: A museum showcasing the city’s role in the Turkish War of Independence and honoring its heroic resistance.
  4. Hasan Süzer Ethnography Museum: A museum housed in a historic mansion, displaying traditional costumes, handicrafts, and daily life objects.
  5. Gaziantep University: A leading educational institution in the region, known for its research and academic programs in various fields.

Gaziantep Museum of Archaeology:
Gaziantep Museum of Archaeology:

Now, let’s discuss safety for tourists and some do’s and don’ts when visiting Gaziantep:

  1. Safety: Gaziantep is generally a safe city for tourists. However, it’s always advisable to take standard precautions such as keeping an eye on your belongings, avoiding isolated areas at night, and following local advice and regulations.
  2. Respect Local Customs: Gaziantep is a conservative city with strong cultural values. Respect local customs and traditions, particularly in religious sites and conservative neighborhoods.
  3. Dress Modestly: It’s recommended to dress modestly, especially when visiting religious sites or conservative areas. Avoid wearing revealing clothing and opt for more conservative attire.
  4. Ask for Permission: If you wish to take photographs of locals or their shops, it’s polite to ask for permission beforehand.
  5. Try Local Etiquette: Gaziantep locals are known for their hospitality. Embrace the local culture by greeting people with “Merhaba” (hello) and showing appreciation for their traditions and cuisine.

In terms of sustainable tourism, Gaziantep has made efforts to promote eco-friendly practices and preserve its cultural heritage. Some initiatives include:

  1. Preservation of Historical Sites: The city has undertaken restoration and preservation projects to protect its historical sites, ensuring they can be enjoyed by future generations.
  2. Sustainable Gastronomy: Gaziantep’s cuisine promotes the use of local and seasonal ingredients, supporting sustainable farming practices and reducing the carbon footprint.
  3. Recycling and Waste Management: The city has implemented recycling programs and waste management initiatives to minimize environmental impact.
  4. Community Involvement: Several organizations in Gaziantep engage in community projects, promoting education, cultural preservation, and sustainable development.
  5. Eco-friendly Accommodations: Some hotels and accommodations in Gaziantep have adopted eco-friendly practices, such as energy-efficient systems and waste reduction programs.

Preservation of Historical Sites
Preservation of Historical Sites

Now, let’s provide some general information about Gaziantep:

  • Language: The official language is Turkish, but English is spoken in tourist areas and establishments.
  • Religion: The majority of the population in Gaziantep is Muslim, and Islamic customs and traditions are observed.
  • Population: Gaziantep has a population of approximately 2 million people.
  • Holidays: Gaziantep celebrates national holidays such as Republic Day (October 29) and religious holidays like Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha.
  • Water: Tap water is generally safe for bathing and washing, but it’s recommended to drink bottled water.
  • Electricity: The standard voltage is 220V, and the outlets use the European two-pin plug.
  • Mobile and Internet: Mobile networks are widely available, and internet access is accessible throughout the city, including cafes, hotels, and public areas.
  • Health Services: Gaziantep has modern medical facilities and hospitals that provide healthcare services to locals and visitors.
  • Postal Service: The city has post offices where you can send mail and packages.
  • Suitable Clothing: Dress modestly, especially in religious sites. Lightweight and comfortable clothing is recommended during the hot summers, and a jacket or sweater may be needed in cooler months.
  • Banks: Gaziantep has several banks and ATMs where you can withdraw cash and exchange currency.

Tourist Attractions in Turkey

It’s always a good idea to check the latest travel advisories and consult with local authorities before your trip to Gaziantep to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.

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