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> About Iskenderun, tourism, history
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mesaj 07-03-2007 - 23:13
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İskenderun



İskenderun, also Iskenderon (formerly known in the west as Alexandretta, from Greek Ἀλεξανδρέττα; in Arabic الإسكندرون, al-Iskandarūn), is a district and its center in the Turkish province of Hatay. It is a growing city with metropolitan aspects and surpassing the province seat of Antakya in population. It is located on the Mediterranean coast on the eponymous Gulf of İskenderun at the foot of the Nur Mountains (Amanos Mountains) in the far southeast of Turkey, and has a population of 159,149 (2000 census).


Tourism
Iskenderun is now a busy commercial centre and an important port of Turkey on the Mediterranean region. Iskenderun has an active, modern life with good hotels, restaurants and cafes among the palm trees by the Mediterranean sea, in a fine location on the shores of a deep bay and at the foot of high Amanos Mountains. The cuisine of Iskenderun is delicious, especially "Kunefe", a desert with cheese in it and eaten hot. The best prawns can also be found here.

To the south of Iskenderun there is Ulucmar (Arsuz), a historical place and holiday town on the coast. You will benefit from the beautiful sandy beaches, sea and sun while you may do some water sports as well in one of the hotels or guest houses in a quiet atmosphere. As a contrast, on the way to Antakya there is mountain resort of Sogukoluk, which gives a good opportunity in summer months for a quite holiday.

On the way to Adana, you will pass through the large areas of fruit groves which provide all the orange, tangerine, and lemon needs of the whole country. Dortyol (the plain of Issos) is where Alexander the Great won over Darius II and Persians in 330 BC. In nearby Osmaniye, there is a fortress at Toprakkale built by the Crusaders, which is still impressive.

Nearby Iskenderun is Yakacik (Poyas), which preserves a splendid example of Ottoman architecture dating back to the 16th century; the Sokollu Mehmet Pasha Complex comprising a mosque, bath, bazaar, caravanserai, and madrasa.


History


İskenderun preserves the name, but probably not the exact site, of Alexandria ad Issum, founded by Alexander the Great in 333 BC, about 23 miles south of the scene of his victory at the Battle of Issus, to supersede Myriandrus as the key of the Syrian Gates. The importance of the place ever since has derived from its relation to this pass, the easiest approach to the open ground of Hatay and of Northern Syria. As the main outlet for the overland trade from Baghdad and India, which had great importance until the establishment of the Egyptian overland route, the place served as a great resort, first of Genoese and Venetian merchants, then West and North European merchants. The British Levant Company maintained an agency and factory here for 200 years, until 1825, in spite of appalling mortality among its employees.

After the First World War, the Sanjak of Alexandretta became part of the French Mandate of Syria, under a special statute, but Turkey demanded its return as the area was ethnically divided between Turks, Sunni Arabs, and large numbers of Alawites. Republic of Hatay was formed in 1938, breaking away from the French mandate. In July of 1939, Republic of Hatay decided to join the Republic of Turkey following a popular referendum. Syria has continued to claim the region since then.

Today, İskenderun is an important industrial centre. İsdemir, one of Turkey's prominent steelworks is in İskenderun.


Trivia

According to the film Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, the Holy Grail is in the "canyon of the crescent moon" outside of Alexandretta. In the moviee, the Nazis offer the sultan of Hatay precious valuables to compensate for removing the Grail from his borders. He ignores the valuables, but accepts their Rolls-Royce Phantom II. Following that, we see the Jones boys head from Berlin to Alexandretta where they find the Holy Grail.
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mesaj 07-03-2007 - 23:13
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fmbass
mesaj 16-07-2008 - 18:50
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çok iyi olmuş hem ingilizce çalışmak hemde iskenderunu daha iyi öğrenmek için....
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