Prof. Dr. Turan Yazgan Ethnography Museum
The museum, located at the entrance to the Gökçay Recreation Area, is Türkiye's largest and the only museum of ethnographic carpets and rugs, with an exhibit hall that is both horizontal and vertical. In addition to more than 3,000 traditional carpets and rugs, the museum includes traditional clothing that reflects the folkloric characteristics of the city and the Turkish world, along with traditional clothes, old household appliances, firearms and agricultural tools, a Yoruk tent, traditional sofa covers, weaving looms, earthenware jars, and the distilling apparatus used in the production of rose oil. After visiting the 10-floor museum, you can enjoy a view of Isparta from the Watch Tower.
In Türkiye, 18 cities have received the title of “cittaslow” (slow city). Two are in Isparta: Yalvaç and Eğirdir.
Eğirdir is a district rich in history and nature, with Eğirdir Lake and its constantly changing colours. There is also Can Island, the title deed of which was bestowed upon Mustafa Kemal Atatürk by the people of Eğirdir, and the Kasnak Oak and Sweet Gum Forests which are rarely seen in the world, as well as the apple and the Apollon Butterfly, only seen in Eğridir.
Yalvaç, a cultural spot that has hosted many civilizations since prehistoric times, lets its visitors live almost 5,000 years in one day. A visit to Yalvaç, which was once perhaps the busiest geography in Anatolia as a location where all roads and passengers met, takes you on a rich and delightful journey extending from traditional life to precious handicrafts that have been forgotten, and from historical ruins to their present-day cultural legacies.
Islands in Eğirdir Lake: Yeşil Island and Can Island
Yeşil Island (Yeşil Ada), 1.5 km from the Eğirdir city centre, preserves its authenticity with stone-foundation wooden houses, narrow streets, and small fishermen’s shelters on an area of nine hectares. Yeşil Island, formerly known as NIS among local residents, draws attention with a plethora of home boarding accommodations and fish restaurants. The Hagia Stefanos Church, considered sacred by Christians, is also located on the island.
Can Island (Can Ada) is a colourful islet of 7,000 square metres, set between Eğirdir and Yeşil Island. There is no urban development on the island. The island was presented as a gift to Atatürk during his visit to Eğirdir.
Although there is no definitive agreement on the construction date of Eğirdir Castle (Eğirdir Kalesi), consisting of inner and outer structures, it is known that today’s remains are from the Byzantine period. The fortress walls, repaired at various times, were built with rows of bricks and stones. There are residences on the fortification walls of the fortress, which is located on the peninsula extending into Eğirdir Lake.
Adada Ancient City
The name of the Adada Ancient City (Adada Antik Kenti), located in the district of Sütçüler, 89 km from Isparta, is first mentioned in an inscription from a treaty made with the city of Termessos, dating from the BCE 2nd century. It is also known that mercenaries from Adadalı served in the armies of the Hellenistic kings. The city experienced its brightest days under the Roman Empire. The ruins of temples, a theatre, official buildings, a church and other structures still stand in the city. The Temple of Trajan is among the most well-known of the temples in the Pisidia Region. The temple of Emperors and Zeus Megistos-Serapis indicates the existence of the Zeus Megistos and Serapis cults in the city. The building dates from the late 2nd and early 3rd centuries. Another important structure in the city is an open-air meeting venue with 20-tiered seating rows.
Apollonia Ancient City
The ancient city located in the district centre in Uluborlu, called Apollonia from the Phrygian Period until the end of the Byzantine Period, was founded by Seleukos I. Within the ancient city, the ruins of the Cirimbolu Aqueducts and Uluborlu Castle are worth visiting. The structures were built in 1869-1872 to bring the waters of Kavil Spring from Kapı Mountain to the castle.
Pisidia Antiokheia Ancient City
There are ruins from the Roman and Byzantine civilizations in this ancient city, established during the Hellenistic Period and a kilometre north of Yalvaç District. The Ancient City of Antiokheia (Antiokheia Antik Kenti) is where Saint Paul, having played an important role in the spread of Christianity, preached his first documented sermon. There is a church dedicated to Saint Paul, and religious services can be held with special permission.
Many Christian tourists come here every year on pilgrimages. For this reason, the ancient city, and the Church of Saint Paul are important among the religious tourism centres in our country.
The Temple of Augustus, churches, a theatre, the Roman Bath, Tiberius Square, the Propylon, the Monumental Fountain, Pillar Street and aqueducts in the ancient city are some of the structures that have been partially preserved up to the present time.
Five kilometres to the southeast of Antiokheia lies the important sanctuary of Men, one of the most respected gods of the Phrygia and Pisidia regions, starting from the early periods of the First Age. In the middle of the area, surrounded by a Temenos wall with moon-shaped reliefs and inscriptions, is the Temple of Men. Mesopotamian in origin, Men was believed to spread goodness and heal with the mysterious power of the Moon.
Research in the ancient city of Pisidia Antiokheia, a focus of archaeological study for about 150 years, resulted in the establishment of a museum in Yalvaç in the 1900s. Artifacts, unearthed during excavations conducted by scientists from the United States, were moved to the high school building in Yalvaç at the end of the excavation season. A warehouse was subsequently built for additional artifacts unearthed in Yalvaç and the surrounding villages, even though the excavations concluded in 1947. For some time, artifacts were exhibited in Yalvaç Library, but it became clear that another solution was necessary. Construction began in 1963 and the museum was opened to visitors in 1966 as the Yalvaç Museum (Yalvaç Müzesi).
Eğirdir Hızır Bey Mosque
The construction date of Hızır Bey Mosque (Hızır Bey Cami), also known as the Grand Mosque, is unknown. However, it is believed that Hızır Bey had the walls built in masonry form with packed dirt roofs. With a capacity of 3,000 worshippers, the mosque featured a snow well inside, to discharge snow accumulated on the roof in winter. The roof of the mosque was partly open. The mosque was destroyed in 1814 by a fire, but rebuilt in accordance with its original style by Eğirdir mutesellim and guardian Yılanlıoğlu Şen Ali Ağa.
Dündarbey Madrasa (Dündarbey Medresesi) was built as an inn in 1237 during the reign of Seljuk Sultan Gıyaseddin Keyhüsrev II. It was turned into a madrasa by Hamidoglu Dündar Bey in 1301. The madrasa has two floors and there is a courtyard in the middle; the courtyard has 30 cells. The large stone door at the madrasa’s gate is surrounded by Seljuk-style engravings in geometric shapes.
Hagia Stefanos (Yeşil Island) Church
Located on Yeşil Ada in Eğirdir district, the church extends east west and has a rectangular layout plan. The church, with three naves and apses, was built in the second half of the 19th century. The side walls were put up with rubble stones, and there is a protruding semi-circular apse on the east wall of the building. The windowsills are surrounded by white marble blocks, and the interiors have stucco decorations. The church was included in the restoration studies of the Lake District Research Project; the outer walls were rebuilt and the roof covering and interior wooden elements were also renewed.
Gelendost Ertokuş Inn
Also known as Gelendost Inn (Gelendost Hanı), Ertokuş Inn (Ertokuş Hanı), in the Gelendost district, is on the eastern side of Eğirdir Lake and also on the historical caravan route connecting Eğirdir to Konya.
Built on a rectangular plan session area extending in north-south, the inn comprises a courtyard and indoor shelter sections. The courtyard is in the middle of the southern facade and features a pressed arched gate opening on the crown door, which appears to be designed in a deep cove with pointed arches. It is surrounded by semi-open spaces covered with pointed cradle vaults, lined up opposite each other along the eastern and western edges.
The inn was built by Mübârizeddîn Ertokuş in 1203-04, according to its four-line marble inscription in Thuluth calligraphy on the crown of the closed/shelter section.
Süleyman Demirel Democracy and Development Museum
The museum is in İslamköy, 24 km from the Isparta city centre. The structures, built in the form of a social complex where the museum is included, are on an area of 16,000 square metres. The social complex features a mosque, the primary museum building, the library building, lodging and warehouse buildings. Exhibits in the various halls pertain to the life and experience of Süleyman Demirel, who served as Türkiye's prime minister and president for many years. The displayed items include gifts given to Demirel on domestic and international trips, memorial photos and plaques of appreciation, cartoons from different periods drawn by local artists, and photographs of the ground breakings and opening of important projects in Türkiye's development. Thousands of works in the library and archive departments of the museum are also made available to researchers.