The city of snow. The city of meadows as far as the eye can see.
Kars is where my mother and father were born. It is a border city. It is the forgotten pearl of the east. I was four years old when I first go to Kars. I don’t remember much. But I remember a feel ing of happiness and freedom when I ran at the meadows, I remember an old but awesome castle, lots of gaggles.
After years when I took my first step at Kars the first sign of being in another land was the air. An exquisite smell of grass and heaven when there is not snow, the smell of snow. If you go to Kars first smell the air and take a deep breath. You will know the difference, believe me.
You must first explore the city center. You will see lots of local shops. They sell famous local cheese, honey, butter and other local products like sunflower seed, herbs, spices. You must eat goose. Believe me it is nothing like the meats you eat before. And of course you must eat kete (pastry).
There are historical places all over the Kars. The stone made houses and wide neat streets welcomes you in Kars. There are mosques, old education places named külliye, old government buildings. And there is huge castle on a high hill. Going to castle is a little hard if you don’t like to walk on the upright roads. But the result is wonderful when you reached the castle. You can see almost the whole city. Not just the city the mountains around the city, the meadows, the fields. It is a view everyone must see.
I suggest you to go Ani on the second day if you go to Kars. It takes half of the day. Ani is a remainder of an old city. You can see houses, religious places, libraries and the most awesome thing is you can see the old commercial road, The Silk Road. You can walk on that road, you can dream that city full of people. Some of them just shopping, some carrying some product with carriages. You can draw a city full of life, full of activity. You must see Ani, you must see the Aras river there.
Then you must go to Cildir Lake. It is a beautiful lake. There is not much buildings or cafes or hotels around. But here there are a few restaurants. You can eat yellow fish. It is Cildir Lake’s special fish.
With the skiing facilities and its beautiful nature Sarikamis is another beauty of Kars. You must go there and see the skiing center. Breathe the air.
I can tell Kars with pages but it doesn’t describe the being there. I can tell the gaggles but you must see the local people stopping their cars on the empty roads for gaggles to pass, you must talk to people, you must see how hospitable they are.
Go and see the pearl of the East. The city of snow… You can live a fairytale like holiday.
About the Author: Safak Suekinci from Turkey
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