What is the Capital of Turkey?

4 minute read
What is the Capital of Turkey

The Capital of Turkey is Ankara. The Republic of Turkey is a country in Anatolia in West Asia. Moreover, the population of Turkey is 85 million with the majority of the population being Turk, there are Kurds and others as well. Furthermore, the Capital city of Turkey is the second largest city in the nation after Istanbul. Some of you might think that the capital of Turkey is Istanbul, but we just cleared up the truth for you. It is Turkey’s economic powerhouse and Europe’s biggest city and Izmir, Bursa, and Antalya are the country’s major urban centers. Read on to learn more about the Capital of Turkey, Ankara. 

Overview of Ankara

Ankara has been the capital of Turkey for a very long time which can be traced back to the Celtic State of Galantia. 

City NameAnkara
Historical NamesAncyra, Angora
LocationCentral Anatolia, Türkiye
Rank by Population2nd in Türkiye (urban center), 1st by urban area
Population5.1 million (urban center), 5.8 million (province)
Major SettlementsGalatia, Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman
Archaeological SitesHattian, Hittite, Lydian, Phrygian, Galatian, Greek, Persian, Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman

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History of Ankara

Additionally, the history of the capital of Turkey is as follows:

Bronze AgeFirst settlements by the Hattic civilization
2nd millennium BCHittites take over
10th century BCPhrygians arrive
25 BCBecomes Roman city (Ancyra)
3rd-4th century ADChristianity flourishes, and church councils held
654 ADArabs capture the city
1071 ADSeljuk Turks conquer Anatolia
1356 ADOttomans capture the city
1402 ADTimur defeats the Ottomans at the Battle of Ankara
19th centuryBritish consulate established, population booms
1920 ADMustafa Kemal Atatürk establishes resistance HQ in Ankara
1923 ADAnkara becomes the capital of the Republic of Turkey
Modern EraSplit between historic Ulus and modern Yenişehir
20th centuryRapid growth surpasses İzmir as Turkey’s 2nd largest city

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Geography and Demography of Ankara

Ankara’s location places it amidst Turkey’s Central Anatolia Region. The city itself is hugged by the Kızılırmak and Sakarya rivers, with the Sakarya forming its western border alongside Eskişehir province. 

  • Bolu and Çankırı provinces lie north of Ankara, while Konya sits south and Kırıkkale rests east. 
  • A stream called Çubuk flows through the heart of Ankara, thus eventually connecting to the Ankara River which is a tributary of the Sakarya.
Source: Adobe Stock

  • Moreover, Ankara’s population has undergone a dramatic transformation. In 1927, the city had only 75,000 residents. This number grew steadily in the forthcoming decades, hence reaching a planned peak of 500,000 by 2023. 
  • However, rapid urbanization throughout the 1950s and onwards surpassed expectations. 
  • Due to economic hardship in rural areas, many people migrated to Ankara seeking a better life. 
  • This surge led to the unplanned construction of Gecekondu, hastily built neighbourhoods that lacked proper infrastructure. 
  • Despite their precarious construction, these areas provided essential amenities like electricity and running water for a growing population.

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Culture and Economy of Ankara

Ankara is a cultural hub filled with museums, theatres, and historical sites. A must-see is the Atatürk Mausoleum which is a tribute to the founder of the Turkish Republic. 

Atatürk Mausoleum In Turkey
Atatürk Mausoleum In Turkey

  • People of History will love exploring the Ankara Citadel which is a testament to the city’s rich past.
Ankara Citadel in Turkey
Ankara Citadel in Turkey

  • Beyond its cultural offerings, Ankara has a unique agricultural heritage. 
  • For centuries, the city has been renowned for its mohair, wool, and fruits.
  • Today, Ankara is famous for its Kalecik Karası and Muscat grapes which are used to produce the acclaimed Kavaklidere wine. Another local speciality is the light-coloured Ankara honey.

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Facts About Ankara

Let’s conclude the article with some amazing facts about the capital of Turkey! 

  • Ankara has been inhabited since the Bronze Age.
  • Ankara is the home of the Turkish Angora cat breed.
  • Ankara existed during the Bronze Age and belonged to the Hattic civilization.
  • The oldest mosque in Ankara, the Alaeddin Mosque, dates back to 1178 AD.
  • Ankara boasts the largest urban ropeway on the Eurasian continent.

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Is the capital of Turkey Ankara or Istanbul?

The capital of Turkey is Ankara and Istanbul is the biggest city of Turkey. 

Does Turkey have two capital cities?

No! Turkey only has one capital which is Ankara. People misunderstand Istanbul as the second capital of Turkey. 

Why isn’t Istanbul the capital of Turkey?

Istanbul, once the capital of the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires, became Ankara’s domain when Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, founder of the Turkish Republic, shifted the capital in 1923.

Now we hope you are clear on what is the Capital of Turkey. For more such content, visit our general knowledge page. 

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