Afyonkarahisar is seeking to become a ‘brand city’
I was in the Central Anatolian province of Afyonkarahisar last week to attend the “TÜHİD Anatolia Meet” organized by the Turkish Public Relations Association (TÜHİD).
Just like the events “Explore with Hürriyet” and “Garanti Bank Anatolian Talks,” the event organized by TÜHİD is very useful, both for the cities that hold such organizations and journalists who visit those cities.
A two-day visit is not enough to see and experience all the beauties of the city.
Afyon is a crossing point. The Hittite, Phrygian, Lycian, Roman, Byzantine and Seljuk civilizations have left their mark all over the city.
The Phrygian Valley, which resembles Cappadocia, is a hidden treasure waiting to be explored.
In the ancient city of Ayazini, the Phrygian, Roman, Byzantine and Seljuk tombs lay side by side in the Ayazini village.
Such unique scenery cannot be seen anywhere else in the world.
A center for healing since ancient times
In the city center, there are more than five hundred renovated historic houses and a lodge for Mevlevis, which is the second largest one after the one in Konya.
Afyon has been known for its thermal springs with healing powers since ancient times.
Governor Tutulmaz said they had applied to become a member of the Thermal Cities Association, which has 20 members across the world.
Gazlıgöl is the home of the Kızılay Spring Water but the spring water basin is full of housing estates.
We have even heard that Italians closed the quarries in their country and bought quarries in Afyon. They process this marble and sell it back to Turkey at a price five times higher than the marble sold by local companies.
The opium poppy that was minted on coins in ancient times, cream (kaymak), Turkish delight (lokum), and sujuk are other specialties in Afyon.
Afyon will become an important tourist destination
A farm machinery fair, gastronomy festival, health tourism workshop, classical music festival, the 18th Jazz Festival, book fair, short film festival, and the Phrygian valley marathon are all events that have been organized in just one month, which show the huge potential Afyon has.
I had the opportunity to visit the village with Kocabıyık, before he passed away in 2012.
He told me about how he walked around barefoot in the streets of the village.
Ahmet invested $10 million to build a modern farm on 2,000 decares of land.
The farm provides jobs to locals and various products are produced, including kaymak.
More importantly, a geographical indication was registered for Afyon’s kaymak.
Ahmet also plans to build the world’s second largest “Art Valley” next to the farm.