Shahmaran (Turkish “Şahmeran”) is a fabulous creature which is popular in the culture of many peoples in the Middle East. She is considered to be the queen of the serpents and the keeper of the wisdom. She is usually described as a being with a head of a beautiful and intelligent woman, a body of a dragon and a second serpent head at the tip of her tail.
Mardin is very old city which was founded several thousands years ago at the mountains of the Northern Mesopotamia. The development of the Great Silk road gave rise to this city. Under the walls of the Mardin fortess the caravans found shelter and took a rest before going to Amed (present Diyarbakır) or Edessa (now Şanlıurfa).
Sometimes it seems that time has stopped at the narrow streets of the old Mardin. When I am having a walk there I can take a stroll through history in my mind. It is hard just to imagine how many strange and mysterious stories are hidden at the corners of this mystical city.
Old Mardin is a very interesting and really mystical city but looks like not “open mind”. It knows a lot of different stories but doesn’t want to tell them to its guests. It is also hard to find somebody among locals who can become a guide to the real history of this city.
Located located in the north-east of Turkey Mardin is known as an open-air museum because of its historical Arabic architecture. This city and its neighborhoods are mainly well described in the tourist guide books. But there are some interesting historical sights near Mardin which are little-known even among locals.
Kars is not a big city but it’s the largest in the northeast part of Turkey after Erzurum. It is famous inside Turkey not only because of historic sights but also local cheese production.
Ethnic restaurant “Erzurum Evleri” is one of the places which must be visited if you come to this city. But it’s not just a nice and authentic restaurant. It looks like museum and represents interior of a typical late Ottoman house for this area.
Pearl Mullet (İnci Kefali in Turkish, Latin Alburnus Tarichi) is an unique fish which can be found only in Lake Van and is endemic to it. This lake is the largest in Turkey and located in the far east of that country. Because of a saline soda water another species of fish cannot live in Lake Van.
Usually when you are ordering something in any Turkish restaurant or simple cafe you get not only main dish from menu but it is served with one or more salad, different kinds of sauces, spiced onion plate and traditional eastern type bread also like “Lavaş”.