Maraş: : The Abandoned City of Northern Cyprus

Nestled in the rolling hills of Northern Cyprus lies a city that was once thriving but now lies in ruins – Marash. This abandoned city once served as a major center for trade and commerce, attracting people from all over the region with its bustling markets, grand homes, and well-kept gardens. Today, Marash is a shadow of its former self, with most of its buildings left in ruins and its streets empty.

Marash was a prosperous city in the 19th and early 20th centuries, attracting Turkish Cypriots, Greek Cypriots, and Armenians alike. The city was a melting pot of cultures, and this was reflected in its diverse architecture, with influences ranging from Ottoman to European styles. During this time, Marash was renowned for its silk production, which was exported to the wider world, and it had a thriving market in which merchants from across the region would trade their wares.

Aside from its rich history and culture, Marash was also known for its golden beach. The beach was a major draw for tourists, attracting visitors from all over the region who came to swim in its warm waters and soak up the sun. However, today, the beach is deserted, and it remains one of the many reminders of Marash’s former glory.

However, the golden era of Marash came to an abrupt end in the mid-20th century. In 1974, the Turkish military invaded Northern Cyprus, leading to a mass migration of Turkish Cypriots to the north and Greek Cypriots to the south. As a result, Marash was left abandoned, with its residents leaving behind their homes, businesses, and personal belongings.

Today, Marash is a ghost town, with only a handful of residents living in the surrounding area. Its once grand homes, markets, and public buildings are now in a state of disrepair, with the elements slowly eating away at the city’s once proud architecture. The city’s stunning Ottoman-era mosque has been left untouched, and it still stands as a testament to Marash’s past glory.

Despite its state of disrepair, Marash has become a popular tourist destination, attracting visitors who are fascinated by its history and the eerie atmosphere of the abandoned city. Visitors can explore the city’s crumbling buildings, wander its silent streets, and imagine what life was once like in this bustling center of commerce.

In conclusion, Marash is a reminder of the fragility of human existence. A once thriving city that was once home to thousands of people now lies in ruins, a silent testament to a time long gone. But despite its state of abandonment, Marash remains a fascinating destination that attracts visitors from around the world, and its history and architecture continue to captivate and inspire those who visit.