Photographer's Note

This photograph was taken in Kemeraltı-Konak at İzmir...


This typical Ottoman building in Kemeralti neighborhood was built by Kizlaragasi Haci Besir Aga in 1741 as a caravanserai. The Bedesten (Inn) is a square-shaped and two-level building, the large courtyard used to have a small pool (Sadirvan in Turkish) in the middle which doesn't exist today. Upper floor had rooms for merchants to overnight after leaving their camels and stuff downstairs in the courtyard. Around the courtyard there were shops and rooms where servants of the tradesman used to sleep. Kizlaragasi Han, being also close to the port, was an important trades point in Izmir until the developing of transportation technologies and opening of new trade routes, at certain times it even served as a local stock exchange. After 19th century the Inn was mainly used for storage of the goods instead of caravans' stop.
Kizlaragasi Han was restored in 1993 as a tourist spot, despite it's off-tourist route, and converted into a handicrafts sales center. There is a small cafeteria in the open-air courtyard where you can relax and have a Turkish tea or coffee.
The mosque in the background is Hisar Mosque... Hisar Mosque was built in 1592... It is the oldest and one of the most significant Ottoman landmarks in İzmir, although built by Aydınoğlu Yakup Bey, a descendant of the dynasty that had founded the Beylik of the same name (Aydınoğlu) which had controlled İzmir prior to the Ottoman conquest. The name of the mosque, which means "fortress", makes reference to the Genoese castle of "San Pietro", previously called Neon Kastron in Byzantine times, part of which used to stand on the same location and which gradually disappeared in whole with the construction of new buildings on its spot. The final remains of the castle were cleared up during the construction of new port installations between 1867-1876.

*Thank you Korkut for your reminding*

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Additional Photos by Salim Fikirkoca (sufi) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1705 W: 165 N: 1512] (9588)
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