A modern capital with more than 5 million citizens Ankara is the second largest city in Turkey. Since antiquity the located in the heart of Anatolia Ankara region has been politically and culturally significant cradle of many civilizations. Ankara for Turkish citizens is often regarded as the city of Atatürk, the political leader and accepted father of the modern Turkish Republic. It is the city with the ministries, the parliament and many governmental institutions. Ankara is also a student city capital with over 10 state and private universities. Incoming students and staff members have the unique opportunity to experience Turkish culture and history in Ankara. With more than 50 museums, opera houses and sport stadiums, Ankara will always have something to offer you and keep you busy.
Some of the many places to be seen are Anıtkabir, the mausoleum of Atatürk with the museum of Atatürk; Ankara Castle – built for military defence purposes; museums such as The Museum of Anatolian Civilizations with exhibits from the Paleolithic era to the present day and the industrial technology museum Çengelhan Rahmi M. Koç Museum; the built in 15th century Haci Bayram Mosque; the constructed in the 3rd century Roman Bath, historical inns, many parks and shopping centres. For more information about places to see and things to do in Ankara and other cities in Turkey please check the following website: https://www.goturkeytourism.com/destinations-turkey/ankara-city-in-turkey.html.
Weather in Ankara
Summers in Ankara are often hot and dry (avg.: 30 – 35°C); winters are cold and snowy (avg. –3 - 3°C).
A public company EGO undertakes the rail systems and bus operations in Ankara which allows for a single type of fare collection ticket for subway and bus transportation. M1 (Kızılay-Batıkent), M2 (Kızılay-Çayyolu), M3 (Batıkent-Sincan/Törekent) and M4 (Keçiören-Atatürk Kültür Merkezi-Kızılay Metro) subway lines of Ankara Metro and suburban rail named A1 Ankaray (AŞTİ-Dikimevi) serve Ankara and cover more than 54 stations. Although the Ankara Metro schedules may differ, they all open at 6:00 am and serve approximately till midnight. Please for more information check: https://www.ego.gov.tr/en/sayfa/1075/rayli-sistem. Many bus stops and/or metro stations are close to AYBU campuses. As an incoming student/academic staff you can apply for a Discount EGO Transportation Card.
Ankara YHT Trains (Ankara High Speed Trains) run daily on these routes: Ankara-Eskişehir-Istanbul and Ankara-Konya. The high speed trains offer high comfort and fast ways to reach your destination (approx. 4 hours from Ankara to Istanbul) with lower than the airlines fares (depends on when you buy your ticket, approx. 100 Turkish Liras for Ankara-Istanbul).
Ankara Esenboğa Airport offers daily flights to many Turkish and international airports. It is close to AYBU Esenboğa campus and 33 km northeast of the city centre. Airport buses named Belkoair travel from Esenboğa to the city centre (Kızılay)/AŞTİ (main bus terminal) where you can use suburban trains/buses.
AŞTİ (Main Bus Terminal) offers routes to all cities and towns in Turkey. It has its own metro station. Some of Turkey’s well-established bus companies are Kamil Koç, Istanbul Seyahat, Asya Tur, Pamukkale Turizm, Metro Turizm, etc.
Arts and Culture
Both Turkish State Opera and Ballet and Turkish State Theatre have venues in Ankara. Ankara Opera House is the largest venue for opera and ballet. Some of the theatres are 125th Anniversary Çayyolu Stage, Şinasi Stage, Altındağ Theatre. The capital hosts five classical music orchestras (Presidental Symphony Orchestra, Bilkent Symphony Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra of the Capital, etc.) and has four concert halls (CSO Concert Hall, known for its symphony orchestras; Bilkent Concert Hall - mostly for performing arts; The Festival Hall (MEB Şura Salonu) famous for its tango performances and Çankaya Çağdaş Sanatlar Merkezi Concert Hall). Ankara also hosts annual national and international music, film and theatre festivals (Ankara Music Festival – a major classical music festival; Flying Broom – film festival hosted by feminist organizations; International Cartoon Film Festival – for children and childlike souls, etc.)
Football, basketball, volleyball, ice skating, ice hockey, tennis and many other sports are popular in Ankara. As a capital city Ankara offers opportunities to watch and participate in a variety of national and international sport events. Some of the sport venues in Ankara: Ankara 19 Mayıs Stadium (football), Ankara 75th Anniversary Race Course/Ankara 75. Yıl Hipodromu (horse racing), The Ankara Arena built for the 2010 FİBA World Championship (basketball, volleyball and concerts), ASKI Sport Hall (indoor arena, basketball), Ankara Atatürk Sport Hall (indoor sport arena, basketball, volleyball, handball), Esertepe Aqua Center ( a multifunctional sport centre for water sport activities), Ankara Ice Skating Palace (ice skating and ice hockey arena), Selim Sırrı Tarcan Sport Hall (indoor arena, volleyball), THF Sport Hall (indoor arena, handball), etc.