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Kesik Minare, Antalya, Turkey

Last Updated on April 29, 2024

Some things are better off broken.

Italy's Leaning Tower of Pisa is famous because it leans. The unfinished granite obelisk in the ancient Egyptian stone quarry on the Nile is famous because it broke before it could be finished. Antalya's ancient broken wonder is the Broken Minaret Mosque (Kesik Minare Cami, also known as Cumanın Cami) of the Korkut Mosque (Korkut Cami) at the corner of Hesapçi Sokak and Cami Sokak in Kaleiçi after passing the Hadrian's Gate (Üç Kapılar) (map).

inside of kesik minare mosque (close-up)

History of Kesik Minare Mosque

The broken minaret was first built as a Roman temple in the 2nd century AD, and thus, the ancient temple did not originally have a minaret at all. A Byzantine church dedicated in honor of the Virgin Mary was built on the temple site in the 7th century, but it was badly damaged during the Arab invasions of the 700s. It was repaired and expanded in the 900s.

When the Seljuk Turks arrived in Antalya in the 13th century, and the Seljuk Turkish Empire of Rum took the city from the Byzantines, the church was converted to a mosque and the minaret added, but in 1361, when Peter I, crusader king of Cyprus, took Antalya from the Seljuks, it became a church again. It became a mosque yet again during the rule of Şehzade Korkut (1470–1509), son of the Ottoman sultan Beyazit II, and continued as a place of worship until 1846, when it was destroyed by a great fire.

Until recent years, the temple-church-mosque remained in ruins, but the minaret was surviving.

historical remains in kesik minare mosque

Visiting Kesik Minare Mosque

The Broken Minaret Mosque has been restored and is now used as a small mosque by the local community. Visitors can still see the remnants of the old temple and church within the mosque and its garden. In addition, there are informative boards available for history enthusiasts to learn more about the site's historical significance.

If you're visiting Kaleiçi, it's convenient to stop by and have a quick look inside the mosque, as the entrance is free and the mosque is quite small. The only inconvenience is that you will need to take off your shoes when entering a mosque in Turkey. Check out our mosque etiquette page for more information.

How to Reach Kesik Minare Mosque

Kesik Minare stands at the southeastern end of Cami Street in Kaleiçi (Old Antalya). After passing Hadrian's Gate (the official landmark and historical gate welcoming visitors to Kaleiçi), continue south along the main street of gift shops until you spot the Kesik Minare's minaret in the sky. Moreover, after passing through Hadrian's Gate, you will find a local map of Kaleiçi posted on a nearby wall, which you can use to help guide yourself.

Inside of kesik minare mosque

Nearby Attractions to Kesik Minare Mosque

While Kesik Minare Mosque is not a major tourist destination in Antalya, it stands within walking distance of many popular sites commonly visited by travelers.

Kaleiçi: Kaleiçi, also known as the old town, is the ancient settlement where Antalya first flourished. Today, it stands as a reflection of the history of Antalya and serves as a popular accommodation zone.

Hadrian's Gate: Hadrian's Gate is the most prominent ancient structure in the city center of Antalya. It was built in 130 AD to commemorate the visit of Emperor Hadrian and served as the main entrance to the old city of Antalya.

Roman Harbour of Antalya: Antalya was a prominent seaport, and Old Harbour was the first place merchants would stop when visiting the city. Today, there is beautiful water from restaurants, tour ships, and fountains.

Karaalioğlu Park: Karaalioğlu Park is a huge seaside park that is located just within walking distance of Kaleiçi. Here, many local festivals are held throughout the year, and the scenery is just out of this world. We highly recommend taking a walk through the park, following the sea line.

Nostalgic Tram: The Nostalgic Tram in Antalya is a single-lined tramway that operates between Konyaaltı Beach and the beginning of Lara. It passes through major tourist destinations while following the natural coastline of Antalya. It is a great way to enjoy the beautiful sunset scenery of the Mediterranean Sea and visit popular locations along the way.

—by Tom Brosnahan, updated by Can Turan


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