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Adana is a city in Turkeymarker and a major agricultural and commercial center. The city is situated on Seyhan River, 30 km. inland from Mediterranean Seamarker, in south-central Anatoliamarker. It is the administrative seat of Adana Provincemarker and has a population of over 1.5 million, making it the fifth most populous city in Turkey.

Adana-Mersin Metropolitan Areamarker, with a population of 2.75 million, stretches over 100 kilometres from east to west and 25 kilometres from north to south; encompassing the cities of Mersinmarker, Tarsusmarker, Adana and Ceyhanmarker. It is the fourth largest metropolitan area in Turkey and one of the country's leading centres of commerce and culture.

Adana lies in the heart of the Çukurovamarker plain, one of Turkey's largest centres of agricultural production, as well as a geographical and economical region that covers the provinces of Mersinmarker, Adanamarker, Osmaniyemarker and Hataymarker.


According to numerous sources, the name Adana is derived from the Hittite URUAdaniya of Kizzuwatna, while others contend that it is related to the legendary character Danaus, or to the Danaoi (Achaeans), a mythological Greek tribe. In the Iliad of Homer, the city is called Adana. In Hellenistic times, it was known as Antiochia in Cilicia ( ) or Antiochia ad Sarum (Greek: Αντιόχεια η προς Σάρον; "Antiochia on the Sarus"). The editors of The Helsinki Atlas tentatively identify Adana as Quwê (as contained in cuneiform tablets), the Neo-Assyrian capital of Quwê province. The name also appears as Coa, and may be the place referred to in the Bible, where King Solomon obtained horses. (I Kings 10:28; II Chron. 1:16). The Armenian name of the city is Ատանա Atana.

According to an ancient Greco-Roman legend, the name has its origins in Adanus and Sarus, the two sons of Uranus, who came to a place near the Seyhan River, where they built Adana. An older legend relates the city's name to Adad (also known as Tesup or Ishkur), the Thunder God in the Akkadian, Sumerian, Babylonian, Assyrian and Hittite mythologies, who was believed to live in the nearby forest, and whose name was given to the region. The Hittites' names and writings have been found in the area, evidencing this possibility. The theory goes that since the Thunder God brought so much rain and this rain in turn brought such great abundance in this particular region, this god was loved and respected by its inhabitants and, in his honor, the region was called the "Uru Adaniyya;" in other words "The Region of Ada."

Adana's name has had many different versions over the centuries: Adanos, Ta Adana, Uru Adaniya, Erdene, Edene, Ezene, Batana, Atana, Azana, Addane.


Aerial view of Adana-north and the Seyhan reservoir.
Adana is located at the northeastern edge of the Mediterranean Seamarker, where it serves as the gateway to the Çukurovamarker plain, which has historically been known in the West as the Cilician plain. This large stretch of flat, fertile land lies southeast of the Taurus Mountainsmarker, and is among the most agriculturally productive areas of the world.

From Adana, crossing the Çukurova westwards, the road from Tarsusmarker enters the foothills of the Taurus Mountains. The temperature decreases with every foot of ascent, as the road reaches an altitude of nearly . It goes through the famous Cilician Gatesmarker, the rocky pass through which armies have coursed since the dawn of history, and continues to the Anatolian plain.

The north of the city is surrounded by the Seyhan reservoir and HEP, which was completed in 1956. The dam was constructed for hydroelectric power (HEP) and to irrigate the lower Çukurova plain. Two irrigation channels in the city flow to the plain, passing through the city center from east to west. There is another canal for irrigating the Yüreğir plain to the southeast of the city.


Adana has a typical Mediterranean climate. Winters are warm and summers are hot and dry. Winters are about 13° to 15°C, and very humid and summers are 34° to 39°C.


The history of Adana goes back more than 3000 years; archaeological finds in the region have revealed human settlements dating from the Paleolithic Age.

Tepebağ Tumulus, where archaeologists found a stone wall and a city center, was built in the Neolithic Age; it is considered to be the oldest city of the Cilicia region.

A place called Adana is mentioned by name in a Sumerian epic, the Epic of Gilgamesh, but the geography of this work is too imprecise to identify its location.

According to the Hittite inscription of Kava, found in Hattusamarker (Boğazkalemarker), Kizzuwatna was the first kingdom that ruled Adana, under the protection of the Hittites by 1335 BC. At that time, the name of the city was Uru Adaniyya, and the inhabitants were called Danuna. Beginning with the collapse of the Hittite Empire, c. 1191-1189 BC, invasions from the west caused a number of small kingdoms to take control of the plain, as follows: Kue Assyrians, 9th century BC; Cilician Kingdom, Persians, 6th century BC; Alexander the Great in 333 BC; Seleucids; the pirates of Cilicia; and Roman statesman Pompey the Great.

The history of Adana is intrinsically linked to the history of Tarsusmarker; they often seem to be the same city, moving as the neighbouring Seyhan River changed its position, and the name changed too over the course of centuries. Adana was of relatively minor importance during the Roman period, while nearby Tarsus was the metropolis of the area. During the era of Pompey, the city was used as a prison for the pirates of Cilicia. For several centuries thereafter, it was a waystation on a Roman military road leading to the East. After the permanent split of the Roman Empire in 395 AD, the area became a part of the Byzantine Empire, and was probably developed during the time of Julian the Apostate. With the construction of large bridges, roads, government buildings, irrigation and plantation, Adana and Cilicia became the most developed and important trade centers of the region. Ayas (today Yumurtalıkmarker), and Kozanmarker (formerly Sis) were the other major urban and administrative centers in the area, especially during the period of the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia.

Middle Ages

In the mid 7th century, the city was captured by the Arab Abbasids. According to an Arab historian of that era, the name of the city was derived from Ezene, the prophet Yazene's grandson.

The Byzantines recaptured Adana in 964. After the victory of Alp Arslan at the Battle of Manzikertmarker in 1071, the Seljuk Turks overran much of the Byzantine Empire. They had reached and captured Adana sometime before 1071 and continued to hold the place until Tancred, a leader of the First Crusade, captured the city in 1097.

In 1132, it was captured by the forces of the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia, under its king, Leo I. It was taken by Byzantine forces in 1137, but the Armenians regained it around 1170. In 1268 there was a terrible earthquakemarker which destroyed much of the city. Adana was rebuilt and remained a part of the Kingdom of Cilician Armenia until around 1360, when the city was ceded by Constantine III to the Mamluk Sultan of Egyptmarker in return for obtaining a peace treaty. The Mamluks' capture of the city allowed many Turkish families to settle in it. The Ramazanoğlu family, one of the Turkish families brought by the Mamluks, ruled Adana until the Ottomans captured the city.

Modern Era

From the end of the Renaissance to the modern era (1517–1918), the Ottoman Empire ruled the area.

In the 1830s, in order to secure Egypt's independence for the Ottoman Empire, the army of Muhammad Ali Pasha, the vali of Ottoman Egypt and Sudan, invaded Syria on two occasions, and reached the Adana plain. The soldiers of Muhammad Ali Pasha destroyed Adana Castle and the Walls, a major hit to city's history. The subsequent peace treaty secured Egypt's independence, but (at the insistence of Great Britain, Austria, Russia and Prussia) required the evacuation of all Egyptian forces from Syria, and its return to Ottoman sovereignty. In the aftermath, Adana was established as a province in its own right.

The Adana massacre occurred in Ottoman Vilayet of Adana in April 1909. A religious-ethnic clash in the province amidst governmental upheaval resulted in a series of anti-Armenian pogroms throughout the district. Reports estimated that the massacres in Adana Vilayet resulted in 15,000 to 30,000 deaths. In 1915 Turkish troops rounded up all Armenians living in Adana and marched them out into the Syrian dessert in the course of the Armenian Genocide, resulting in the complete eradication of the Armenian communities in and around the city.

After World War I, the Ottoman government surrendered control of the city to French troops, and the French Armenian Legion was sent to occupy Adana, which then went on a killing spree in the region, adding to the historical animosities. The French commander had to disband the unit in embarrassment. In May 1919, the Armenians declared a short-lived independent state in Cilicia. During the Turkish War of Independence, Adana was strategically important. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk came to the city on October 31, 1918, and stayed there for eleven days. As a result, he decided to fight against the Allies, and the idea of Kuvayi Milliye was born.

Turkish nationalists fought against the Allied forces, and on October 20, 1921, the Treaty of Ankara was signed between Francemarker and the Turkish Grand National Assemblymarker. Based on the terms of the agreement, France recognized the end of the Cilicia War, and French troops together with the Armenian volunteers withdrew from the city on January 5, 1922.

On 30 January 1943, British prime minister Winston Churchill secretly met with Turkish president İsmet İnönü inside a train wagon at the Yenice Station, 23 kilometres outside of Adana. Churchill wanted Turkey to join the Second World War on the side of the Allies; the details of which were later discussed at the Second Cairo Conference in December 1943, which was attended by İnönü, Churchill and Roosevelt.


Luvi Kingdom (1900 BC ), Arzava Kingdom (1500-1333 BC), Hittite Empire (1900-1200 BC), Assyrian Empire (713-663 BC), Persian Empire (550-333 BC), Hellenistic (333-323 BC), Seleucid Empire (312-133 BC), Pirates of Cilicia (178-112 BC), Romans (112 BC-395 AD), Byzantines(395-638; 964-1071), Abbasids, Great Seljuk Sultanate, Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia (1078-1375), Mamluks, Principality of Ramazanoğlu, Ottoman State, Republic of Turkeymarker (current)


Adana by night
Aerial view of Adana with the Sabancı Mosque and the Seyhan River in the background.

The national government in Ankaramarker still holds majority of power in city administration. Health, education, police and many other city related services are administered by Ankara, through an appointed Governor. Locally elected municipal governments are left with urban planning and infrastructure. With Greater Municipality Law introduced in 1989, the power was split between greater municipality and district municipality. Greater municipality takes care of construction and maintenance of major roads and parks, operating local transit and fire services. District municipality is responsible from neighborhood streets and parks, and operating garbage collection and cemetery services. Greater Municipality administers the entire city of Adana, whereas district municipalities administer their own district.

The City of Adana is made up of 5 districts; Seyhan, Yüreğirmarker,Çukurova, Sarıçam and Karaisalımarker. Seyhan District, on the west bank of Seyhan River, is the cultural and business center of the city. D-400 state road is like an economical border dividing the district into north and south. Seyhan's north of D-400, is economically the most developed part of the city. Along D-400, hotels, cultural centers, commercial and public buildings line up. Old town, located south of D-400, is the market place where traditional and modern shops serve the residents. South of the old town, is a low-income residential area.

The Çukurova District, not to be confused with the Çukurovamarker region, lies north of the Seyhan District and south of the Seyhan Reservoir. It came into being in the last 30 years as city expanded towards north. Çukurova is a modern residential district with many amenities along the wide Turgut Özal Boulevard. Yüreğir Districtmarker, located on the east bank of the river, consists of low-income residential areas and large scale industries. An extensive urban redevelopment plan is under effect in Sinanpaşa, which will convert the neighborhood into a modern residential area . District of Sarıçam lies north of Yüreğirmarker and consists of former townships that are amalgamated to the City of Adana in 2008. Karaisalımarker, a rural area, although within the city limits, is not counted part of the urban zone.

Aytaç Durak is the mayor of Adana and the longest serving locally elected city mayor in Turkey; currently serving for his 5th term: 1984 - 1989, and 1994 - present. He revolutionized the cityscape by revitalizing Seyhan River and building large recreation areas around it.


Aerial view of Adana and the Seyhan River.
Adana is one of the first industrialized city and currently one of the economically developed cities of Turkey. With the construction of Seyhan Dammarker and improvements in agricultural techniques, there was an explosive growth in agricultural production during 1950's. Large-scale industries were built along D-400 state road and Karataş road. Service industry, especially banking, also developed during this period.

Adana is the marketing and distribution center for Çukurovamarker agricultural region, where cotton, wheat, corn, soy bean, barley, grapes and citrus fruits are produced in great quantities. Farmers of Adana produce half of the corn and soy bean in Turkey. 34% of Turkey's peanut and 29% of Turkey's orange is harvested in Adana. Most of the farming and agricultural-based companies of the region have their offices in Adana.

Adana is an industrialized city where large-scale industry is based mostly on agriculture. Textile and leather are the major industry constituting 29% of Adana's manufacturing, plant oil and processed food manufacturing plants are also numerous. As of 2008, Adana has 11 companies in Turkey's top 500 industrial firms. The largest company of Adana, TEMSA, in automotive manufacturing, has more than 2500 employees and manufactures 4000 buses annually. Marsan-Adana is the largest margarine and plant oil factory in Turkey. Advansa SASA is Europe's largest polyester manufacturer employing 2650. Organized Industrial Region of Adana has an area of 1225 hectar and hosts almost 300 plants, mostly medium-scale.

A leading commercial center in southern Turkey, city hosts regional headquarters of many corporates and public institutions. TÜYAP Exhibition and Congress Center hosts fairs, business conferences and currently it is the main meeting point for businesses in Çukurova. Academic oriented 2000-seater Congress Center is expected to open in 2010 at Çukurova Universitymarker campus. Tourism industry is developing as luxury hotels are built on the banks of Seyhan River and along D-400 state road. HiltonSA, Seyhan and Çukurova Sürmeli hotels are the 5-star hotels of the city. Sheraton hotel on the east bank of Seyhan River is currently under construction.

Media in Adana runs by national and local agencies. Yeni Adana is the oldest living newspaper in Adana dating back to 1918. Ekspres, Toros and Bölge are other local newspapers who serve not only to Adana, but to Çukurovamarker in general. Çukurova TV is the largest broadcasting company.Kanal A, Akdeniz TV and Kent TV are the other major broadcasters. Many national newspapers have their regional publishing centers in Adana. Hürriyet publishes a supplement paper, Hürriyet Çukurova, the most popular regional newspaper that has circulation of 48,000.

Owing to the warm climate that residents can be outdoors all year long, Adana faces less of the shopping mall boom that is hitting Turkey in the last 20 years. CarrefourSA and M1 Tepe at the west end of the city are the two American-style shopping malls. Galleria Shopping Mall has been decided to be demolished by Greater Municipal Council due to being built on the river bank; an area zoned for recreation. Residents of Adana enjoy shopping from the shops along the streets. Çakmak Street is the historical shopping street of Adana.

Adana was named among the 25 European Regions of the Future for 2006/2007 by Foreign Direct Investment Magazine. Chosen alongside Kocaeli for Turkey, Adana scored the highest points for cost effectiveness against Kocaeli's points for infrastructure development, while Adana and Kocaeli tied on points for the categories of human resources and quality of life.


In 2008, City of Adana borders are expanded by addition of rural Karaisalımarker district and the rural areas of Çukurova(district), Yüreğirmarker and Sarıçam. Thus, 2008 population of the City of Adana is 1,572,583. However, Adana Urban Area is made up of the urban populations of the four metropolis districts; Seyhan, Çukurova(district), Yüreğirmarker and Sarıçam. Population of Adana Urban Area as of 2008 is;


Urban Population
Seyhan 752,308
Çukurova 267,453
Yüreğirmarker 411,299
Sarıçam 86,727
Total 1,517,787

Two-thirds of the residents of Adana live on the west bank of Seyhan River on where the city was first founded. Seyhan is the most diverse district. Çukurova district has a good community of seniors from all over Turkey who prefer to enjoy their retirement in the warm climate of Çukurovamarker region.

The major ethnic groups in Adana are the Turks, Arabs and Kurds. New generations of Arabs do not speak Arabic as they are mostly assimilated into Turkish culture. Arab community is concentrated in Yüreğirmarker on the east bank of Seyhan River. Kurds, once a small community in Adana, with the massive migration during 1990's, now form almost one third of Adana. Kurds mostly live in southern neighborhoods of the city. Conos, a tribe of Roma people of Romaniamarker, settled in Adana during Balkan Wars. Conos mainly live around Sinanpaşa neighborhood. There's also a sizeable community of migrants from Balkans and Caucasia who also settled in Adana during Balkan Wars and before. Armenians and Greeks, once constituting half of the population of Adana, are now almost none.



Sabancı Merkez Camii
Ulu Cami

The first developments at Tepebağ Tumulus dates back to mezolitic age. Once surrounded by walls, Tepebağ is steps away from Stone Bridgemarker and in between there used to stand a castle. Tepebağ is currently being converted into an archeological park, in which the houses from 18th century will be restored and converted into boutique hotels, cafes and restaurants.

Taşköprü marker, a Roman bridge, was built in the 4th century by architect Auxentios. It is 319 metres long and 13 metres high, and was built on 21 arches which get larger towards the center. Today, 14 of the arches remain. There are two lion artworks on the largest arch.

Büyük Saat Kulesi , a large clock tower that was built by the local governor of Adana in 1882. It was damaged during French occupation, but was rebuilt in 1935, and its image can be found in the city's coat of arms. Kazancılar Çarşısı (Bazaar of Kazancilar), founded around the Büyük Saat.

Çarşı Hamamı (Turkish bath of the Bazaar) was built in 1529 by Ramazanoğlu Piri Paşa and it is the largest hamam in Adana. It is built with 5 domes and inside is covered with marbles. During the time it was built, water was brought from Seyhan River by water wheels and canals.

Irmak Hamamı (Turkish bath of the River), located next to Seyhan District Hall, was built in 1494 by Ramazanoğlu Halil Bey on the ruins of an ancient Roman Bath. It's water comes from the river. Other historical hamam in the city are Mestenzade Bath and Yeni Bath.

Ramazanoğlu Hall was built in 1495 during the reign of Ramazanoğlu Halil Bey. A three-storey building, made of stone, it is one of the oldest sample of a house in Turkey. This hall is the Harem section, where Ramazanoğlu family lived. Selamlık section, where the government offices were, do not exist today.


Sabancı Merkez Camiimarker, though not being historical, is the most visited mosque in Adana, as it being one of the largest mosques in the Middle East. The mosque was opened in 1998 and can accommodate 28500 prayers. It is built in loyalty to Ottoman Architecture. The mosque possesses six minarets, four of them having height of 99 meters. Dome has a diameter of 32 meters and it is 54 meters high from praying area. It is located on the west bank of Seyhan River at the corner of Seyhan Bridge and can be seen from a wide area.

Ulu Cami was built in 1541 during Ramazanoğlu period. The mosque has black and white marble with decorative window surrounds and it is famous for the 16th century Iznikmarker tiling used in its inner space. The minaret is a unique sample with the Mamluk effects it bears and with its orthogonal plan scheme. Inside there is the tomb of Halil Bey, Emir of the Ramazanoğlu Dynasty.

Yağ Camii was originally built as Church of St.James, then converted into a mosque by Ramazanoğlu Halil Bey in 1501. Later, his successor Piri Mehmet Paşa added it's minaret in 1525 and its madrasah in 1558. It is in the Seljukid Grand Mosque style and has an attractive gate made of yellow stone.

Yeni Cami (New Mosque) was built in 1724 by Abdülrezzak Antaki, and still known as Antaki Mosque by some. The influence of Mamluk architecture is visible. It is built in rectangular order and has an interesting stonework on south walls.

Alemdar Mescidi, Şeyh Zülfi Mescidi, Kızıldağ Ramazanoğlu Mosque, Hasan Aga Camii (16th Century Wooden Architecture constructed without nails) are some other mosques with historical value.


In the 19th century, city had 4 churches; 2 Armenian, 1 Greek and 1 Latin. Bebekli Kilise (Saint Paul Catholic Church) was built in 1870 and used as an Armenian Church until 1915. It is currently serving to Roman Catholic community of the city. It is located in old town, close to 5 Ocak Square. On Abidinpaşa Street, there used to stand a larger Armenian Church. During the republic period, the church was demolished and Central Bank (Merkez Bankası) regional headquarters was built instead. Latin Church was built in 1845 at Kuruköprü area and converted into a museum in 1924.

Parks and Gardens

Dilberler Sekisi
Merkez Park by night
Adana has plenty of parks and gardens, mostly well maintained. Owing to the warm climate, parks and gardens are open all year long without the need of winter maintenance.

Recreational pathways on both banks of Seyhan River cross the entire city from south end to Seyhan Reservoir. Pathway then connects to Adnan Menderes Boulevard which goes all the way along the southern shores of Seyhan Reservoir, and the wide sidewalks of the boulevard extend the pathway to the west end of the reservoir. Dilberler Sekisi is the most scenic part of the pathway which is along the west bank, in between the old and the new dam.Recreational pathway along the north side of the irrigation canal goes from east end to west end of the city, crossing Seyhan River from old dam's pathway. Some sections of this pathway has not completed yet. Once completed, within the city there will be almost 30 km of continuous recreational pathway connecting several parks along.

Merkez Parkmarker is a 33-hectar urban park that is located on both banks of Seyhan River, just north of Sabancı Mosque. It has a magnificent landscaping, carrying wide variety of trees and plants in an open concept. With 2100-seater amphitheatre, a Chinese Garden, and two cafes, it is the main recreational area of the city. In the park, there is a Rowing Club which serves recreational rowers.

Atatürk Park is a 4.7-hectar city park built during the first years of Republic. It is centrally located at the commercial district. The park holds a statue of Atatürk and hosts Public Ceremonies.

Süleyman Demirel Arboretum is a large botanical garden containing living collections of woody plants intended partly for the scientific study of Çukurova Universitymarker researchers. Arboretum is also used for educational and recreational purposes by city residents. 512 species of plants exists in the arboretum.

İnönü Botanical Garden exhibits the rich variety of Çukurovamarker flowers, located next to Adana Court of Justice.

Çobandede Park is a 16.5-hectar park at the west shore of Seyhan Reservoir. It is situated on a hill and has a nice scenery of Reservoir and around. The park hosts the tomb of Çoban Dede, a wiseman from Karslı Village. Many people visit the tomb every year to pray and wish for him.

Yaşar Kemal Woods is a hiking area on the east bank of Seyhan River across Dilberler Sekisi. It is dedicated to Çukurovamarker native writer Yaşar Kemal.

Çatalan Woods is a large recreational area in between Çatalan and Seyhan Reservoirs, north of the city, in Karaisalımarker district.

Society and Culture

Performing Arts

Çukurova State Symphony Orchestra performed its first concert in 1992 and since then, the orchestra is performing twice a week from October to May at Greater Municipality Theater Hall. The orchestra consists of 39 musicians and conduct regular tours in Turkey and abroad.

Adana State Theater opened its stage in 1981 at Sabancı Cultural Center. It performs regularly from October to May.

Adana Town Theater was founded in 1880 to be the first theater in Adana by then governor Ziya Paşa. In 1926, the theater moved to the newly built Community Center. Town Theater currently performs weekly at Greater Municipality Theater Hall. Greater Municipality Theater Hall also hosts Town Chorus and community theater, folklor and concert performances.

Seyhan Town Theater and Seyhan Folkloric Dances stage weekly at the 1000-seater Theater Hall of Seyhan Cultural Center.

Amphitheaters in Adana host performances from April to November. Mimar Sinan Amphitheater, the largest in Adana, can accommodate 8000 guests and hosts concerts and movies. It is located at the west bank of Seyhan River. 2100-seater Merkez Parkmarker Amphitheater, 3000-seater Çukurova Universitymarker Amphitheater and Doğal Park Amphitheater in Çukurova District also hosts theaters, concerts and cinemas.

Recently, historical buildings are restored and converted into cultural centers. 515 year old Ramazanoğlu Hall and 130 year old former High School for Girls (now called Adana Center for Arts & Culture) serve as cultural centers hosting art exhibitions and cultural events.

Museums & Art Galleries

Emperor Hadrian, 2nd century CE

Adana Archeological Museum was opened in 1924; one of the oldest museums in Turkey. It moved to its current location at the west corner of Seyhan Bridge in 1972. The museum exhibits archeological works from all over Çukurovamarker. Notable works are; two Augustus statues from Hittites, Achilles Sarcophagus depicting Trojan War and statues from Magarsus and Augusta ancient cities.

Adana Ethnography Museum was opened in 1983 after Archeological Museum moved to its new location. At the front and back yard there are epitaph and gravestones of Adana's leading figures of 17th century. On the west yard, there are inscriptions of Stone Bridgemarker, Misis Bridge, old City Hall and Bahripaşa Fountain. Inside, there are clothings, jewellery and weaponry of Yörük villagemen.

Atatürk Museum exhibits War of Independence and first years of Republic at the mansion, Atatürk stayed during his trips to Adana.

Misis Mosaic Museum, on city's east end at the west bank of Ceyhan River, exhibits mosaics that were on the basement of a 4th century temple in the ancient city of Misis. Mosaic depicts Noah and 23 birds and poultry that he took to his ship during the flood. Museum also exhibits the works that were excavated from Misis Tumulus.

State Fine Arts Gallery was opened in Sabancı Cultural Center in 1982. It carries 59 plastic piece of art. 75.Yıl Art Gallery in Atatürk Park, Adana City Hall Art Gallery and Art Gallery in Seyhan Cultural Center are the other public art galleries.


Art Exhibition at Taşköprü during Sabancı Theatre Festival
Adanademirspor - Adanaspor game at 5 Ocak Stadium.
Altın Koza International Film Festival is one of the top film festivals in Turkey, taking place every year in June since 1969. During Altın Koza of 2009, 212 international films were shown in 11 movie theatres across the city. Long Film Contest, International Student Film Contest and Mediterrenean Cultures Film Contest are held during the festival.

International Sabancı Theater Festival is held every year in April since 1999. In 2009 festival hosted 16 theatre groups, 6 of them international. Opening ceremony of the festival was held at Stone Bridgemarker with a Dimonis Show by Spanish Comediants Group.

International Çukurova Instrumental Music Festival held for the 5th time in 2009. 2-week long festival is held annually in Adana, Antakyamarker and Gaziantepmarker.

Çukurova Art Days is a regional festival that takes place every April since 2007. 115 poets, painters, musicians and caricaturists from 10 different countries attended festival in 2009, which took place in Adana, Mersinmarker, Gaziantepmarker, Antakyamarker, İskenderunmarker, Tarsusmarker and Aleppomarker. 77 talks, 13 concerts, 13 exhibitions, 4 panels and 23 film showing were held during the 4 days of the festival.

13 Kare Arts Festival began in 1999 as a festival of photography dedicated to 13 photographers of Adana who died in an accident during an AFAD (Adana Photography Amateurs Association) trip. Festival then extended to other arts. During the festival, exhibitions of nature, under-sea and architecture photography, puppet shows, shadow theater and several concerts are held. Festival takes place every December.

Adana Literature Festival held every April at Adana Center for Arts & Culture. Around 100 writers, poets and critics attend the festival and performing several talks, panels and presentations.

Seyhan Cultural Events is a month long festival during Ramadan. During the festival, theater plays, sufi music concerts, folkloric dances and children shows held at Seyhan Cultural Center.


Sailing competition at Seyhan Reservoir

Football is the most popular sports in Adana. Adanaspor and Adanademirspor are two well-known clubs of Adana that appear in Turkish Professional Football League. Both clubs were highly successful, performing at the top division (now called Super League), from late 60's to mid 90's, but relegated to lower divisions since then. Both teams have almost equal number of passionate fans in every district of the city, creating an archrival atmosphere second to İstanbulmarker. Both teams share 5 Ocak Stadiummarker as their venue.

Basketball is also popular in Adana. Botaşspor Club is one of the top clubs in Women's Pro-Basketball. The venue of Botaşspor is Adnan Menderes Sports Center.

Rowing became a popular sports in Adana in the last 20 years. Rowing competitions are held all year long on Seyhan River and Seyhan Reservoir. Adana Greater Municipality Rowing Club and Çukurova Universitymarker Rowing Club compete at the national and international level. Sailing competitions are also held at Seyhan Reservoir all year long. Recreational sailors and sailing competitions can be watched all along the shores of the reservoir, from parks, cafes and buildings around. Adana Sailing & Watersports Club is the only sailing club of Adana.

Waterpolo team of Adanademirspor has the record 22 years of straight Championship Title in Men's Waterpolo and given the nickname 'Unbeatables'.

Adana Hippodrome hosts Horse racing competitions.


Adana kebab
Turkish cuisine is one of the most preferred cuisine in the world and Adana has contribution to it. Cuisine of Adana and Çukurovamarker at large influenced mainly from Yörük, Arabic and Armenian cuisine. Spicy and sour foods are common, and meat can be found in many meals.

Adana Kebab, called "Kıyma Kebabı" locally is a kebab made from minced meat. It is usually served with onion salad, green salad or with well-chopped tomato salad. Drinks that goes best with Adana Kebab, is Rakı and Şalgam. Since it can be found at all kebab restaurants in Turkey and at most Turkish restaurants around the world, Adana name still bears kebab to many people. Adana Kebab is the most popular dining choice in Adana, although foods from other cultures are getting increasingly popular. Besides many kebab restaurants, there are also many kebab serving vendors on the older streets of Adana.

The city is also famous for its şalgam, a salty fermented juice made from turnips; Şırdan a kind of home-made sausage stuffed with rice, and eaten with cumin; paça, boiled sheep's feet; bicibici (pronounced as bee-jee-bee-jee) made from diced semolina, rose water and sugar, and served with crushed ice, consumed especially in summer time. Furthermore, the city has a number of famous desserts, such as Halka Tatlı, a round-shaped dessert, and Taş Kadayıf, a bow-shaped dessert. Several types of fruit, including the apricot, are native to this area.


Public, private and not-for profit foundation institutions conduct education in Adana. There are 282 public and 12 private primary schools which pupils attend from grade 1 to 8. From grade 9 to 11, pupils go to one of the 85 public and 26 private high schools. Notable high schools of the city that require examination to enter are; Adana Fen Lisesi (Lycee for Science), Adana Anadolu Lisesi (Anatolian Lycee) and Bilfen Lisesi (Private). There are also 6 public and 6 private schools for pupils with special needs. 9 Community Training Centers serve adult residents to improve their skills.

Higher Education

Çukurova Universitymarker is a state university located at the east shores of Seyhan Reservoir. University was founded in 1973 with the union of the colleges of Agriculture and Medicine. These two colleges are still the most popular of the university. It has a beautiful campus overlooking to the reservoir and the forests around. The university is one of the well developed universities of Turkey with many cultural, social and athletic facilities, currently holding 40,000 students.

Çağ University is a not-for-profit tuition-based university founded in 1997. The university is located just outside of City of Adana, midway to Tarsusmarker. University holds around 2500 students, most of them commuting from Adana, Tarsusmarker and Mersinmarker. Faculty of Management is the most popular school in the university.


Adana Train Station

As being on the major route that is connecting Europe to Middle East, Adana is well served by many forms of transportation. Until the 16th century, Adana was a port city where ships could navigate on Seyhan River to the port just south of Stone Bridgemarker.


Direct flights to Londonmarker, Düsseldorfmarker, Munichmarker and Nicosiamarker (Cyprus-North) from Adana Şakirpaşa Airportmarker available through Turkish Airlines and Cyprus Turkish Airlines.

Mersin-Aleppo Train connects Adana and the rest of Çukurova region to Aleppomarker, the largest metropolitan area of Syria. This train service started in 2008, but did not get popular, as the ride from Adana to Aleppo takes 8 hours. Hatay-based buses take this distance in 3-3.5 hours.


Turkish Airlines, Pegasus Airlines, Onur Air and SunExpress provide daily flights to Istanbulmarker, Ankaramarker, Izmirmarker, Antalyamarker and Trabzonmarker from Adana Şakirpaşa Airportmarker.

Turkish State Railways(TCDD) provides trips to most of the cities in Turkey from Adana's historical Train Station. Trains are very slow, as it takes 12 hours to get from Adana to Ankaramarker, but for scenery the trip is worth. One can enjoy seeing the bridges and tunnels built by German Engineers in the late 19th century while crossing Taurus Mountainsmarker. Varda Bridge is one of this route's many engineering wonders. Konyamarker-Mersinmarker-Adana High-Speed Rail, which is expected to start running by 2015, will drop trip time between Adana and Ankara to 3 hours.

Numerous bus companies provide service to almost all the cities in Turkey. Although lost its popularity as private airlines introduced inexpensive flights to major cities, bus is still the major form of transportation to and from Adana. Adana has two intercity bus terminals. Bus companies that serve transportation to cities west of Adana, departs from Central Bus Terminal, whereas the buses that serve to cities east of Adana depart from Yüreğirmarker Bus Terminal. There is shuttle service between two terminals.


Mersin-Adana Train runs as a commuter train serving every 20 minutes between Mersin, Tarsus and Adana. With the new railbuses, train trip between Adana and Mersinmarker takes 45 minutes. Train service from Adana to Ceyhanmarker, Osmaniyemarker, Iskenderunmarker and Gaziantepmarker run only once or twice per day. Regional bus services from Adana to other cities of Çukurovamarker are plentiful and carried by bus and minibus co-operatives. Seasonal Bus Services to high plains of Tekir, Bürücek and Kızıldağ run in summer, due to high demand of Adana residents escaping the heat.


Adana Metro Map
There is an extensive highway network in the region, connecting Adana to as far as Erdemli at the west, Niğdemarker at the north, Şanlıurfamarker at the east and Iskenderunmarker at the south. Traffic runs smooth at anytime of the day, driving can take as short as 30 minutes to Mersinmarker and 1.5 hours to Gaziantepmarker. Adana boasts having wide streets and less traffic jams when comparing to other large cities of Turkey. Driving gets difficult in the old town where it is still the commercial center of the city.

Local Transit

Local Transit, as in other cities in Turkey, served separately by Greater Municipality (through buses and future metro) and by Dolmuş (Minibus) and Bus Co-operatives.

Adana Greater Municipality Bus Department (ABBO) serves the city with 229 buses, 8 of them designed specifically for the disabled residents. Payments are collected by Kentkart Smartcard system; one of the most advanced in Turkey. Most of the bus drivers are women.

Adana Metro is a Rapid Transit system that is scheduled to open in December 2009. The construction started in 1997, but stopped for 6 years due to financial reasons. Adana Metro is 13.5 km long and has 13 stations which 3 of them are underground. The line starts at the very north of the city in Çukurova district and goes all the way south, crossing Seyhan River just south of the old town and turning north in Yüreğirmarker District and ending at Akıncılar, next to Yüreğir Bus Terminal. Second Line of Adana Metro will be running from Akıncılar to Çukurova Universitymarker in Sarıçam District. Second line will be 9 km. long and will have 7 stations. Construction of the second line will start in December 2009.

6 Bus Co-operatives (known as Can buses) serve with 411 buses. Kentkart and cash are accepted at these buses. 18 Dolmuş Co-operatives with total of 1086 minibuses serve even to the secondary streets. The only form of payment is by cash.

Notable natives

International relations

Twin towns — Sister cities

Adana is twinned with:


  1. See, e.g., Sirekli Archaeological Project.
  2. Innvista - Horses from Egypt and Kue
  3. Dikran Boyadjian, Haygakan Lekeone, Badmagan Hushakrutiun (The Armenian Legion: A Historical Memoir) (Watertown: Baykar Printing, 1965), pp.195-198
  4. Cilicia in the years 1918-1923
  5. Córdoba, Spain

Other sources

External links

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