Having a location on the eastern border of Turkey, Igdir is worthwhile to view with its legendary Mount Big Ararat.
The northern and the northeastern borders are lined by the Araks River, of which river bed is the border with the Armenia. On the east and the southeast of Igdir are Nakhichevan Autonomous Republic and Iran, on the south the Agri Province, and on the west and the northwest the Kars Province.
Igdir is considerably a region of plateaus and mountainous areas. The Dil Plain is the most eastern point of Turkey. The highest mountain of Turkey, the Big Ararat is our border with Iran.
Most of the studies done, shows that the Hurrians, accepted their coming from the Central Asia circa 4000 BC, were the first to settle down to the region. Igdir and its neighborhood, hosting many civilizations through history, lived through the sovereignties of the Hurrians, the Urartuians, the Sakas, the Little Arsakli State, the Sassanians, the Muslim Arabs, the Kayis, the Ilhanlis, the Turcoman chiefs under the rule of Timur, the Karakoyunlu State, the Akkoyunlu State, the Safevi State, the Ottoman Empire and the Iran State (Revan Province). Been subjected to the brutal occupation of the Armenians in 1917, Igdir was rescued on November 14, 1920 from this distraction.
The counties (central) of Igdir are Aralik, Karakoyunlu and Tuzluca.
PLACES FOR SIGHTSEEİNG
The Genocide Monument
It’s at the junction point of the roads in the Baharli district. The height of the Genocide Monument and the Museum, which were constructed in the memory of 80,000 Turks massacred by the Armenian gangs, from the ground level is 43.50 meters. It’s still the highest monument in Turkey.
The period from the oldest Turkish State to the modern Republic of Turkey was all represented at the hilts of the swords as bronze relieves. The monument and the Mount Ararat behind of it constitute together integrity. The documents, the photographs, and the other materials, which are the heritage of the Armenian brutality between the years of 1915- 1918 and the findings in the mass graves, are exhibited in the museum.
The Mount Ararat
It’s the highest mountain in Turkey and the border between Iran and Igdir (Turkey). Having a height of 5165 meters, the mountain is an old volcanic mountain. In addition to its geological position, Ararat outstands with the belief that it hosted Noah’s Ark after the Flood and consequently with its legendary fame about this theme. Besides its appearance in the scriptures, this mountain is mentioned in many different languages. The major names are Ararat, Kuh-i Nuh, and Cebel el Haris. According to the records, the first climbing to the Mount Ararat was achieved by Professor Frederik von Parat on October 9, 1829. But the first winter climbing was carried out afterwards by Dr. Bozkurt Ergor on February 21, 1970. However, no-one can achieve the solo winter climbing until now.
On the route of the historical Silk Road and on the pack trail of Tabriz- Batumi, this building was constructed by the Chief Serafeddin Ejder, who was the Emir of Surmali under the reign of the Seljukian, in the 12th century. This caravanserai is one of the wonderful examples of the Seljuk stonework.
It’s near to the Melekli County. In excavations done in 1913, an Urartuian necropolis, into which the ashes of the dead people burnt was buried, was discovered in this region. Furthermore, ornaments, armament, and seals were found there.
Ahura (New Born), on the outskirts of the Mount Ararat, was established as a religious worship center 2200 years ago. However, due to the earthquake, the big rocks and the mud rolled down from the mountain over the village and destroyed it by covering in 1840. Even today, there is the graveyard of the old village settlement.
Kocbasi graves (Ram headed) are found almost in all graveyards on the Igdir Plain; they are the heritage of the Karakoyunlu period. These headstones were put up to the graves of the heroes and braves and also the young men who died early.
It’s possible to walk and picnic on the Araks River banks.
Karakale (Surp-Mari) was established in a position convenient for defense west of the Igdir Plain and, on the border with the Armenia, was one of the oldest settlements in the Surmeli Gap. It’s assumed that it was constructed by the Urartuians or in anterior times. The ramparts were destroyed by the earthquakes occurred in the years of 1664 and 1840.
Igdir Cairn Castle
The castle is located on the outskirts of the Big Ararat. Established on the cliffs convenient for the defense and in a position best to observe and control the caravan trade, the Igdir Cairn was built by the Oguz Turcoman in the 11th century. There are also the remains of a mill belonging to that times.
The meal made out of the shinbone of the lamb called Bozbas is very famous in Igdir and in its neighborhood. Besides, stone meatballs and the yoghurt soup are very delicious, too.
In Igdir and its neighborhood, especially in the villages, people weave very beautiful carpets, rugs, halca, hurcun, saddlebags of wool and cotton by using special madders. The motifs over them have artistic value. The motifs mostly used belong to the Karabagh and the Caucasus; in addition, plant and animal motifs are for the woolen socks.