Tarsus has a long and prestigious history; in times of Ancient Greece it was already a regional center at the crossing of several important trade routes, linking Anatolia to Syria and beyond. Because the oldest ruins are covered by the modern city, archaeology has barely touched them. It became famous in Roman Imperial times, as the scenery for the meeting of Mark Antony and Cleopatra, and the cementing of their alliance against Octavianus. It's a very significant place to Christianity as well, being the birthplace of Saul of Tarsus, better known as St. Paul the Apostle.
There are fairly modern and frequent regional trains from Adana and Mersin. For travel from Ankara or Istanbul, a change is required at nearby Yenice. However, due to ongoing engineering works, all long distance trains are cancelled until at least 2018. The railway station, 1 Tarsus Garı is centrally located.
The city has lots to see from Roman and Biblical times, such as the Well of St Paulus.
If you are wondering in the city, or if you somehow happen to be in the city, never ever forget to buy Cezerye: some kind of a Turkish delight that has a different texture and taste. You should for sure try shalgam too but you might not be able to see it due to it being a seasonal drink that is sour and bitter, refreshing though.
|Routes through Tarsus|
|Antalya ← Mersin ←||W E||→ Adana → Gaziantep|