Formerly known as Amisos, Peiraieos, Pompeiopolis, and Simissos – the city of Samsun in Turkey dates back to antiquity as it houses artifacts, sites, and caves that record Samsun’s rich, Hellenistic history. It is located on the coast of the Black Sea, making it one of its major ports and most important trading hubs in Turkey even in ancient times. Samsun continued to flourish over the millennia and remains a cultural, historical, agricultural, and economic powerhouse in the country. Here, we invited Istanbul-based photographer and Lomographer Ruya Kurt, a.k.a. ruyakurt as she shares her to the Community what Samsun looks in her latest annual trip to the city.
The first city of the Amazons which were the warrior women of antiquity, Samsun which is rich with its history, nature, and culture, located on the Black Sea coast of Turkey and one of the cities worth a visit.
First of all, it is a quiet city, a long stretch of coast where you can walk to relax, ride a bike or skateboard, or just sit down to watch. And when you move away from the city and the beach and head up towards the villages, there is a nature that welcomes you with wonderful beauty. Also, Kızılırmak Delta is located in Samsun has 321 different bird species which contains a combination of 420 different species in Turkey and therefore every year bird ringing and bird watching studies are carried out here. The thing that drives me to go to Samsun is actually the instinct to 'go' and photographing the nature in which I feel good.
On this visit, I went to a village called Dağköy. This is actually a historical village. It is a place where important struggles were fought in the Turkish War of Independence. This place became one of my favorite places in Samsun to take photos of nature. Apart from this, the coastline, which I always enjoy going and cycling, makes Samsun unique of course. You can take photos of Samsun's people and city with a sea view.
Springtime is exactly the time of migration for birds in Samsun. If you are a good observer, you can get the chance to see and examine various types. Apart from that, city life is quite peaceful and calm. This is a city with no traffic or crowds. In my opinion, the best activity to do here is to watch the seagulls flying on the beach and walk.
When Samsun is mentioned, the first thing that comes to mind as a meal is pita. Samsun pita is consumed at breakfast and on special days and it is very delicious. Another important Samsun flavor is 'nokul'. Nokul is a dessert made simply by wrapping the dough with walnuts and grapes. It looks simple but definitely so delicious! Also, I think Bafra ice cream – which took its name from a district of Samsun and making with buffalo milk – should be tried, especially with honey and walnuts.
For those who want to spend time with nature and photograph nature, it is beneficial to use a personal vehicle because public transportation is insufficient to go to the villages and Kızılırmak Delta.
I have been going to Samsun once a year since I was little. I remember the memories I spent here as a child in the summer, we used to have a picnic with my grandfather on the river bank, throw the watermelons into the ice-cold water of the river and cool it. That's why, when I'm in Samsun, all the beauty in it is blended with good memories and it creates a shadow under which I will take shelter and sit peacefully.
Now, I am back in Istanbul, my classes and routine, and I am trying to keep up with this intensity. I feel happiness and rush at the same time in Istanbul.
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