As a settlement, Bafra dates back to the fifth millennium BC. Remnants at Ikiztepe area revealed chalcolithic period (fifth to fourth millennia) habitation signs that continued for an uninterrupted 2300 years until 1700 BC. Both Early Bronze Age and Early Hittite objects were discovered there. Paphlagonians are known to have lived in Kızılırmak Valley. Persians overtook the region in 546 BC from Lydians. A hellenistic mausoleum was also found there. Roman and byzantine rules preceded selchuks who settled turcoman tribes and was created here a Bafra Principality that ceded to ottomans in 1460. The name Bafra derives from "bafira" that means a phoenician trade house established in a harbour or bay. It is believed that the sub-prefecture status was given to Bafra in 1854. It is subjacent to the Samsun Province. This town famous for its tobacco, caviar and thermal springs. Its 13th century hamam and 15th century mosque-medrese complex are sights wort visiting. Ikiztepe, 7 km northeast of Bafra, an Archaeological site from the early Bronze Age reveals much of Black Sea regional history. On the contrary of the history the legend women warriors Amazons lived here, you can find many document and artifacts which found on the Ikiztepe. The artifacts, including jewelery which is especially important, are kept in the Samsun Museum. Bafra can be accepted that the region is very convenient for the eco-tourism point of view. The Yorukler Galeric forest, which is the one of the flooded forest of Turkey, is the unique place for the picnic and trekking. This forest between the lakes and the sea is about 1000 hectares in size. The Cernek Lake located within the border of Doganca Village of Bafra County is particularly convenienet for a bird observation both in spring and winter. It possibly to observe ten thousand of singing birds such us nightingales and wagtails together with thousands of predator birds such as eagles, falcons and hawks in April and May while about 30.000 to 40.000 aquatic birds such as ducts, geese, swans, and mallards can be counted in January and February in the Cernek Lake. In line with the black storks, the cranes, herons and also pelicans visit to delta for wintering. The Cernek Lake and its environmental reed-beeds and marshes are the places where a great variety bird species can be observed together with these aquatic birds. This area its coastel sand dunes, marches and reed-beds far from settlement is a unique region having international value of our country, which is natural beauty and features are preserved.
Herewith I would like to emphasize again the excellent experience we had last week with our guide Yildirim on the climbing of the Ararat. He was taking care of us with a lot of attention and we could really trust on him. Also after the climbing he was escorting us very kindly and all appointments were taken accurately. It was really a great pleasure for us.
We should also congratulate Celam who prepared nice meals, always with enthousiasm, and we will remind him as our good cook forever.
As soon as we have the opportunity, we will send you some pictures about this expedition.
Be assured we are happy about the way it was organised.
Pierre Kockerols / Brussel