Reading list | Amasya
This historic riverside city was ruled by the ancient kings of Pontus, who are buried in rock tombs in the cliffs that rise above the narrow valley. The geographer Strabo was born here in 60BC, and in the 15th and 16th centuries Amasya became the home of Ottoman princes, as John Carswell explains in Cornucopia 11. Here they served as governors, learning their craft and attracting artists and musicians to their court. Today, the attractive Yalibolu (waterfront) houses beside the Yeşilırmak river have been restored, some turned into cafes and hotels. Older still are the 13th-century Seljuk and Ottoman buildings predating the conquest of Istanbul. The modern city is the provincial capital with a population of around 350,000, and the region is known for its apples.