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For other uses, see Konya (disambiguation).
Metropolitan Municipality
Mevlana Museum (1274) in Konya
Location of Konya, Turkey

Coordinates: 37°52′N 32°29′E / 37.867°N 32.483°E / 37.867; 32.483Coordinates: 37°52′N 32°29′E / 37.867°N 32.483°E / 37.867; 32.483

Country  Turkey
Region Central Anatolia
Province Konya
 • Mayor Tahir Akyürek (AKP)
 • Metropolitan Municipality 39,000 km2 (15,000 sq mi)
Elevation 1,200 m (3,900 ft)
Population (2011)[1]
 • Density 50/km2 (100/sq mi)
 • Metro 1,073,791
Time zone EET (UTC+2)
 • Summer (DST) EEST (UTC+3)
Postal code 42XXX
Area code(s) (+90) 332
Licence plate 42

Konya (Turkish pronunciation: [ˈkon.ja]; , Latin: Iconium) is a city in the Central Anatolia Region of Turkey. It is the seventh most populous city in Turkey. As of 2011, the Konya Metropolitan Municipality had a population close to 1.1 million. Konya is one of the most economically and industrially developed cities in Turkey.[2][3][4]

Konya was historically the capital of the Anatolian Seljuk Sultanate and the Karamanids. The Neolithic settlement of Çatalhöyük in Konya Province was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2012.[5]



Konya, also spelled in some historic English texts as Konia or Koniah, was known in classical antiquity and during the medieval period as Iconium in Latin, and Ἰκόνιον (Ikónion) in Greek (with regular Medieval Greek apheresis Kónio(n)). This name is commonly explained as a derivation from εἰκών (icon), as an ancient Greek legend ascribed its name to the "eikon" (image), or the "gorgon's (Medusa's) head", with which Perseus vanquished the native population before founding the city.[6]

Ancient history

Excavations have shown that the region was inhabited during the Late Copper Age, around 3000 BC.[6] The city came under the influence of the Hittites around 1500 BC. These were overtaken by the Sea Peoples around 1200 BC.

The Phrygians established their kingdom in central Anatolia in the 8th century BC. Xenophon describes Iconium, as the city was called, as the last city of Phrygia. The region was overwhelmed by Cimmerian invaders c. 690 BC. It was later part of the Persian Empire, until Darius III was defeated by Alexander the Great in 333 BC.

Alexander's empire broke up shortly after his death and the town came under the rule of Seleucus I Nicator. During the Hellenistic period the town was ruled by the kings of Pergamon. As Attalus III, the last king of Pergamon, was about to die without an heir, he bequeathed his kingdom to the Roman Republic. During the Roman Empire, under the rule of emperor Claudius, the city's name was changed to Claudioconium, and during the rule of emperor Hadrianus to Colonia Aelia Hadriana.

Saint Thecla.

During the Byzantine Empire the town was destroyed several times by Arab invaders in the 7th-9th centuries.

Seljuk era

During the period of chaos that overwhelmed Anatolia after the Battle of Manzikert the city was conquered by the Seljuk Turks in 1084.[8] From 1097 to 1243 it was the capital of the Seljuk Sultanate of Rum, though very briefly occupied by the Crusaders Godfrey of Bouillon (August 1097) and Frederick Barbarossa (May 18, 1190). The name of the town was changed to Konya by Mesud I in 1134.

Konya reached the height of its wealth and influence as of the second half of the 12th century when the Seljuk sultans of Rum also subdued the Anatolian beyliks to their east, especially that of the Danishmends, thus establishing their rule over virtually all of eastern Anatolia, as well as acquiring several port towns along the Mediterranean (including Alanya) and the Black Sea (including Sinop) and even gaining a momentary foothold in Sudak, Crimea. This golden age lasted until the first decades of the 13th century.

By the 1220s, the city was filled with refugees from the Khwarezmid Empire, fleeing the advance of the Mongol Empire. Sultan Kayqubad I fortified the town and built a palace on top of the citadel. In 1228 he invited Bahaeddin Veled and his son Rumi, the founder of the Mevlevi order, to settle in Konya.

In 1243, following the Seljuk defeat in the Battle of Köse Dağ, Konya was captured by the Mongols as well. The city remained the capital of the Seljuk sultans, vassalized to the Ilkhanate until the end of the century.

Karamanid era

Main article: Karamanids

Following the fall of the Anatolian Seljuk Sultanate in 1307, Konya was made the capital of a Turkish beylik (emirate); which lasted until 1322 when the city was captured by the neighbouring Beylik of Karamanoğlu. In 1420, the Beylik of Karamanoğlu fell to the Ottoman Empire and, in 1453, Konya was made the provincial capital of Karaman Eyalet.

Ottoman era

Under the Ottoman Empire, in the vilayet system established after 1864, Konya was the seat of the Vilayet of Konya. Konya was administered by the Sultan's sons[9] starting with Princes Mustafa and Cem and future Sultan Selim II. During the Tanzimat period, the province's name was changed from Karaman to Konya reflecting the rise of Konya.

The Meram highway was constructed in 1950. The first Konya National Exhibition and Fair was held in 1968, and it now of the most important cultural events that take place in Konya. The Koyunoğlu Museum was passed to the city in 1973 and it was reopened in a brand new building.

War of Independence

During the Turkish War of Independence, Konya became a logistical center for the Turkish Army along with other cities not occupied by the Allies. The needs of army were gathered in Konya and sent to fronts.

Konya was also the health center where the war veterans were treated.

Konya was a center for agriculture at the turn of the 20th century. Since the late 20th century, the economy has diversified.


The first local administration in Konya was founded in 1830. This administration was converted into a municipality in 1876.[10] In March 1989, the municipality became a Metropolitan Municipality. As of that date, Konya had three central district municipalities (Meram, Selçuklu, Karatay) and a Metropolitan Municipality.  In accordance with recently amended local administrations law, the borders of Metropolitan Municipality has expanded and non-central districts have been included in metropolitan borders. The mayor is elected in every five years.

Central Districts

Other Districts

  • Çumra 
  • Derbent
  • Derebucak 
  • Doğanhisar 
  • Emirgazi 
  • Ereğli 
  • Güneysınır
  • Hadim 
  • Taşkent 
  • Tuzlukçu 
  • Yalıhüyük
  • Yunak


Konya is the largest city of Turkey. It is located in the middle of Anatolia and has nine neighbour cities, Ankara, Karaman, Mersin, Niğde, Afyon, Eskişehir, Antalya, Isparta and Aksaray. It has 31 districts and it is the sixth most crowded city in Tukey.


Konya has a continental climate with cold, snowy winters and hot, dry summers.[11] Rainfall occurs mostly during the spring and autumn.

Under Köppen's climate classification the city has a semi-arid climate (Köppen BSk).[12] Summers temperatures average 30 °C (86 °F). The highest temperature recorded in Konya was 40.6 °C (105 °F) on 30 July 2000. Winters average −4.2 °C (24 °F). The lowest temperature recorded was −25.8 °C (−14 °F) on 25 January 1989. Due to Konya's high altitude and its dry summers, nightly temperatures in the summer months are cool. Precipitation levels are low, but precipitation can be observed throughout the year.

Climate data for Konya
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 4.6
Average low °C (°F) −4.1
Precipitation mm (inches) 34.7
Avg. rainy days 5 6 5 6 7 5 1 2 2 5 5 7 56
 % humidity 76 72 62 55 53 48 41 39 47 58 70 78 58.3
Mean monthly sunshine hours 96.1 126 189.1 207 266.6 312 347.2 341 288 220.1 150 93 2,636.1
Source #1: Devlet Meteoroloji İşleri Genel Müdürlüğü [2]
Source #2: Hong Kong Observatory [3]


Konya consistently ranks among the nation's top 10 cities for the average score of high school graduates. There are various elementary and secondary schools in the province. The Meram Fen Lisesi is among Turkey's first-tier science high schools.

Konya is one of the few cities to contain more than 100,000 college students. Selçuk University had the largest number of students, 76,080, of any public university in Turkey during the 2008-09 academic year.[13] It was founded in 1975. The other public university is Necmettin Erbakan University which was established in Konya in 2010.[14]

Private colleges in Konya include the KTO Karatay University and Mevlana University.[15][16]


The city ranks prominently among the Anatolian Tigers.[2][3][4] There are a number of industrial parks.[17] In 2012 Konya's exports reached 130 countries.[17] A number of Turkish industrial conglomerates, such as Kombassan Holding, have their headquarters in Konya.[18]

While agriculture-based industries play a role, the city's economy has evolved into a center for the manufacturing of components for the automotive industry; machinery manufacturing; agricultural tools; casting industry; plastic paint and chemical industry; construction materials; paper and packing industry; processed foods; textiles; and leather industry.[17]



The bus station (otogar) has connections to a range of destinations, including Istanbul (~10 hours), İzmir (~9 hours) and Ankara (3,5 hours).


Konya is connected to Ankara, Eskişehir and to Istanbul via the high-speed railway services of the Turkish State Railways. High-speed trains (Yüksek Hızlı Tren, abbreviated as YHT) operate between Ankara and Konya. Travel time to Ankara is 100 minutes. There are eight trains from Ankara to Konya every day.


Main sights


Konya has the reputation of being one of the more religiously conservative metropolitan centers in Turkey. It was once known as the "citadel of Islam" and its inhabitants are still comparatively more devout than those from other cities.[20] Konya was the final home of Rumi, whose tomb is in the city, and whose followers established in 1273 the Mevlevi Sufi order of Islam there and became known as the whirling dervishes.

A Turkish folk song is named "Konyalım" (making reference to a loved one from Konya).[21]

Konya produced Turkish carpets that were exported to Europe during the Renaissance.[22][23] These expensive, richly patterned textiles were draped over tables, beds, or chests to proclaim the wealth and status of their owners, and were often included in the contemporary oil paintings as symbols of the wealth of the painter's clients.[24]

The diet of people includes a large amount of bulgur wheat and lamb meat.

Images from Konya

Twin towns

Twin towns and sister cities

Konya is twinned with:

See also

References and notes

Further reading

Published in the 19th century
Published in the 20th century
Published in the 21st century

External links

  • Encyclopædia Britannica: Konya
  • More information about Konya
  • Emporis: Database of highrises and other structures in Konya
  • Detailed Pictures of Mevlana Museum
  • Pictures of the city, including Mevlana Museum and several Seljuk buildings
  • 600 Pictures of the city and sights
  • Extensive collection of pictures of the Mevlana museum in Konya
  • , 316-384
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