Once being the capitol if the Ottoman Empire is Edirne today the administrative capitol of the province of Edirne and has a population of 138.000. It’s situated in the border triangle of Bulgaria, Greece and Turkey about 220km west of Istanbul. Edirne is where 4 rivers are meeting: Meric, Arda, Tunca and Ergene, so Edirne is a city with many bridges. The city has a rich cultural heritage which can be still seen in the many mosques, old traditional bazaars and the museums. Many ancient structures have been built by Sinan the master architect from the Ottoman Empire in the 16th century. Edirne is famous for the Yagli güres: Oil wrestling! According to written record the first ever tournament in oil wrestling had been held in the year 1361 in Kirkpinar a district of Edirne. Still every year in June, the annual championship of oil-wrestling is held in Kirkpinar – 750 years of sporting activity! Edirne has a humid subtropical climate, summers are hot and dry the winters are cold and snowy. Edirne is a popular day trip excursion from Istanbul.
History of Edirne
The city has a fluid history and was under siege from Bulgarian Kings and Roman Emperors until the Ottomans conquered the city in the 15th century. Excavations revealed settlements dating back to 7000 BC. Edirne has been through many historical periods starting with the Thraker who called their settlement Odrisia in the 5th century BC. In the 2nd century AC the town was called Hadrianopolis, in honour to the emperor Hadrian who rebuilt the city. Sultan Murad I gave it yet another name after he gained control in 1361: Edrine. The name was then only slightly changed into Edirne in the 18th century.