Charming Ottoman town stands out as winter getaway spot
Cumalıkızık, an Ottoman village which is famous for its historical buildings that include frame houses, mosques and inns, mesmerize visitors with beautiful views, while offering them an escape from the chaos of urban life.
Located in the foothills of Mountain Uludağ, just 10 kilometers from Bursa’s city center, Cumalıkızık welcomes thousands of tourists throughout the year, however, when snow falls, it lures not only nature lovers but also amateur photographers.
Visitors to the iconic town stroll the streets while some take a break to enjoy sumptuous breakfast tables consisting of local delicacies and a glass of hot Turkish tea in the snow.
Photographers and Instagram buffs, on the other hand, walk around in narrow streets with their cameras ready for any historical wonder they might come across.
The spot is especially popular with those living in big cities such as Istanbul and Bursa, who book hotels and enjoy peace and quiet in one of the most beautiful places in Turkey.
Cumalıkızık was registered on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2014, as the village reflects the birth of the Ottoman Empire in the 14th and early 15th century.
Founded as a “foundation village” in the early Ottoman period, Cumalıkızık provided income for the construction of the complexes and the first capital.
It is among the best examples of the Ottoman lifestyle with its traditional stone paved street texture, houses built with wood and adobe and monumental structures.
The village with 270 historical houses, walkways, a museum, some 60 food and drinking venues and nearly 150 gift stalls has also gained popularity thanks to the TV series and movies shot there in recent years.
Having a population of about 700 people, the village keeps attracting thousands of tourists throughout the year, even in the winter conditions.
Speaking to state-run Anadolu Agency, Güven Şahin, a history teacher, defined Cumalıkızık as a neighborhood that should be visited in winter, noting that he came to Bursa from outside the city to see historical places.
Zafer Yeşil, who said that he came from Istanbul to Bursa for a tour, also invited history enthusiasts to Cumalıkızık.
“It’s more beautiful than I expected. Its historical sites and nature are much more impressive in winter. I’ve been here once before, but I saw it for the first time in this season. Those who wonder here should definitely come,” Yeşil said.
Cumalıkızık lies within the boundaries of central Yıldırım district and later got the status of a neighborhood, hosting approximately 50,000 people a week during the tourism season, mostly on Saturdays and Sundays.
However, the village continues to get its share from those who visit Uludağ, one of the most preferred winter tourism destinations of Turkey, which is right next to it.
After visitors snowboard and ski down the slopes and ride on ice sleds and snow bikes, they relieve the tiredness of a few days of intense physical activity with a short tour in the village for a few hours.