Ankara has been the capital town of Turkey since 1920. However, its history dates further back. Going back to five thousand years ago, Ankara had been home to tens of civilizations as it is situated in the heart of Asia Minor. It has served as a home for the Hittites, the Phrygians, the Lydians, the Persians, the Macedonians, the Galatians, the Romans, the Byzantines, the Seljuks, and the Ottomans and last but not the least the Republic of Turkey respectively. Ankara, the second-largest city in Turkey, is populated by 5.639,076 people as of 2019. The number goes up to six million with the inclusion of the neighboring settlements.  Ankara is the highest-populated Central Anatolia town.

Ankara means anchor in Phrygian. Some archaeological efforts revealed a sign of an anchor on coins, which were in circulation under the Roman reign in Ankara.  While Ankara was once persistently called Angora, the Republic of Turkey took a resolution in 1930 and declared that no letter addressed to Angora would be delivered, and the town has been acknowledged as Ankara since then.  

Having ruled the town in the 7th century B.C., the Lydians engaged in cereal production, animal breeding, olive oil and wine making in Ankara. Ankara was ruled by the Romans from 25 B.C. to 395 A.D., and by the Eastern Roman Empire right after that. Ankara fell under the Seljuk rule as the Empire expanded its territories into the Asia Minor in 1071, and the trade boomed in the town for two centuries. In fact, Ankara had always been a major trading site as it is situated on the Silk Road. Many inns in town hosted commuting traders in the past.

The Ottomans annexed Ankara in 1302. This kicked off an Ottoman rule in Asia Minor and across Ankara to last for 700 years. The number of mosques and public baths built under the Ottoman reign as a public service was unmatched by any other. Ankara was granted the status of a province once the state-based system was abolished by the Ottoman reforms introduced in 1841. Having embarked on a war of independence in 1919 across Anatolia, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk made Ankara a hub to orchestrate the national struggle, and launched a new parliament right after that. Ankara then became the unofficial capital town. Turkey was acknowledged as an independent state in 1923. The Grand National Assembly of Turkey went on to officially declare Ankara as the capital town in October, 1923, and then it was declared 16 days later on October 29 that Turkey would be governed as a republic.

Ankara assumed a metropolitan status in 1984 as it attracted a great deal of migration from other Anatolian towns starting from 1950s. This has paved the way for more infrastructure efforts to respond to the needs of the growing population. Apart from the public baths operated since the 15th century, Ankara is also home to many hot springs as a courtesy of the land.

In 2010, two Ankara cats, one with a blue eye and one with a green eye, were introduced as the symbol of the city. Apart from Ankara cats, the Angora goat is renowned for soft fiber, which empowers the textile industry.  The flower called centaurea tchihatcheffii grows only in Ankara. It is therefore legally safeguarded.

Ankara has 40 sister cities around the globe. Among some of them are Cairo, Havana, Baku, Beijing, Bucharest, Budapest, Nicosia, Moscow, Sarajevo and Zagreb.

Ankara awaits domestic and international visitors, offering an experience to enjoy 53 museums, archaeological sites and ruins, opera and ballet halls, a unique cuisine, festivals, Atatürk Forest Farm, hot springs, greenery spaces, and recreational sites.

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