Official language: Turkish
Time zone: UTC +3
Currency: Turkish lira (TRY)
Nearly half of the country’s production of fresh apricots, and approximately 95% of the dried ones, comes from Malatya. Thanks to the unique climate in the region, local fruits are considered to be the tastiest.
Malatya lies at the point where a vast sea of grass of the Eurasian Steppe fades into the rocky terrain. You can enjoy here an outstanding view (and a lovely scent) of orchards cascading down the hillside.
From Malatya, you can take a trip up to Mount Nemrut which is one of the highest peaks in this part of Turkey. Many local travel agencies organize guided tours (usually two-day) towards the site.
Malatya is a city located in the Eastern Anatolia Region, in the south-east of Turkey. It’s also a capital of the Malatya Province. The first inhabitants settled the area a few thousand years ago. The city was established at the present location in the early 19th century.
In the past, Malatya was well-known for the cultivation of opium highly valued by the British for having the highest percentage of morphine. Today, the economy of the city relies on agriculture and food production. Malatya is the main apricot growing center in the country, and these fruits – either fresh or dried – can be found at every corner. You may want to visit the grand bazaar situated north of İnönü Caddesi at the intersection with Fuzuli Caddesi. Most of this busy marketplace is covered by the roof and offers all kinds of goods.
Food plays an essential role in local culture. One of the most typical dishes is Kofta, a sort of meatballs. It can be prepared in many different ways – supposedly, there are over 70 variations of Kofta. Kağıt kebabı is another popular meal in Malatya. It’s made out of lamb meat and vegetables, and fried in an oiled paper wrapping (the paper should be removed before eating). Stuffed food is also well liked here. It may be cooked with mallow, grape, cabbage, and beet leaves, or zucchini flowers.
Tourists often use Malatya only as a base for visiting other destinations. It is, however, worth spending a day touring the city itself. Discover the relaxed and welcoming atmosphere of the place which is not overcrowded with travelers yet. Its friendly inhabitants will make you feel at home – whether in a shop or out on the street you will be offered a cold drink. And when you become tired of walking and sit down for a moment on the curb, expect someone to bring you a piece of newspaper so you won’t get dirty!