Erzincan is a city in Eastern Anatolia. After suffering from powerful earthquakes (in 1939 which leveled the whole city and most recently in 1992), it has undergone a process of renewal and has become a modern city—Erzincan is one of the most orderly cities in Turkey. The population is approximately 300,000. Many stores and shopping malls can be found in Erzincan.
1 Erzincan Airport (ERC IATA) has daily flights from Istanbul (IST and SAW) and Ankara. It's modern and clean, with the usual facilities including car hire. It's 5 km southeast of city centre, a dolmuş runs downtown and in 2023 costs 5 TL.
Doğu Express departs Ankara daily at 18:00, reaching Erzincan 16 hours later around 10:00. This train continues to Erzurum, another 4 hours, then to Kars, a further 4 hours. The return train leaves Erzincan around 16:00. There are couchettes and a buffet. The main stops along the route are Kayseri and Sivas: for details and tickets see Turkish Railways website[dead link].
A tourist version of this train runs daily year-round. The eastbound train makes long stops for sightseeing at İliç, Erzincan and Erzurum, while the westbound train calls briefly at Erzincan around 06:30 then makes long stops at Divriği and Bostankaya.
A regional train runs twice a day from Divriği, leaving at 05:00 and 16:00 and taking three hours. The eastbound return train leaves Erzincan at 14:30 and 05:30.
A high-speed line is under construction from Sivas towards Erzincan and Kars: completion is nowhere in sight.
2 Erzincan railway station is 500 m south of city centre.
Bus operators include Metro Turizm and Flixbus; Pamukkale don't run here.
3 Erzincan Otogarı the bus station is 3 km east of city centre at the junction of the bypass. The dolmuş downtown takes five minutes.
From Istanbul follow O-7 (toll) onto E80 past Bolu and ever east.
- 1 Dörtyol. Downtown Erzincan, named after the central roundabout.
- 2 Grand Mosque (Ulu Cami) has a pleasant courtyard.
- 3 Terzibaba Mosque at the junction of Fevzi Paşa Cd and 793rd Sk is vast and modern. Many Turkish mosques are modern but in retro-Ottoman style, but this one from outside looks like a congress hall.
- 4 Esentepe. A higher hill from which you can view all of the city.
- 5 Ekşisu Piknik Tesisleri. Natural mineral water source, and a picnic area.
- 6 Altıntepe Höyük 12 km east of the city is a volcanic hillock that was inhabited for millennia. Best preserved is its Byzantine church, but of most archaeological interest is its Urartian settlement from 9th to 7th century BCE. The site is under excavation and in 2023 remains closed to visitors.
- 7 Girlevik Waterfalls. One of Turkey's most beautiful.
- And many other picnic areas.
- 8 Üçpınar (south of D100/E80 towards Tercan). A semi-abandoned village, formerly Armenian Abrank (Ապրանք). It has the 13th century Surp Tavit Monastery with a dilapidated church building. Nearby are two, 6-m tall khachkars, elaborately carved Armenian tombstones; these are perhaps the most impressive khachkars still standing in Turkey, and possibly the tallest in the world.
- 9 Tercan (100 km east). This town has an impressive 12th-century caravanserai established by Mama Hatun, a female ruler of the Saltukids, a regional dynasty contemporary with the Sultanate of Rum. It was re-modelled in early Ottoman times and has lodging, secure storage for merchandise and stables ranged around a central courtyard. Another circular courtyard contains the dynastic tombs.
- Rafting — the area is home to several crazy whitewater rivers.
- Football: 24 Erzincanspor play soccer in TFF Second League, the third tier. Their home ground 13 Şubat Şehir Stadyumu (capacity 13,000) is next to Grand Mosque.
- Copper objects.
Perhaps the most special and unique culinary offering of Erzincan is Erzincan döneri, served as a sandwich or together with rice and fried potatoes. Check out Kebabistan, Döneristan or any other kebab shop around Dörtyol area; a portion (100 g) should cost no more than 9 TL.
- 1 Meva Hotel, 1271st Sk (corner of Halit Paşa Cd), ☏ . Good location on main boulevard, clean, some rooms small or smelling of tobacco smoke. B&B double 1500 TL.
- 2 Grand Simay Hotel, Halit Paşa Cd, ☏ . Good location, mixed reviews for comfort and service. B&B double 1000 TL.
- Karakaya Hotel is the shabby place at Fevzi Paşa Cd 40 where you end up if misled by Google Map, which shows a duplicate Grand Simay here.
- 3 Eriza Hotel, 13 Şubat Cd 6, ☏ . Creaky old place, service and comfort variable. B&B double 1500 TL.
- 4 Hotel Beyrut, Kırklar Cd 21/A, ☏ . Simple hotel, good value for what you pay. B&B double 800 TL.
- Hotel Grand Alemdar, Terzibaba Cd 73 (facing Terzibaba Mosque), ☏ . Welcoming mid-price hotel east of town centre. B&B double 1500 TL.
- 5 Hilton Garden Inn, Fevzi Paşa Cd 36, ☏ . Clean efficient place east edge of city. B&B double 1500 TL.
As of Dec 2020, there is 4G in Erzincan from all Turkish carriers. There's a mobile signal along the main east-west highway through the district but lots of dead spots. 5G has not yet reached this area.
- Kemaliye — locally known as Eğin, Kemaliye is a beautiful old town on the Karasu River, a major tributary of the Euphrates, about 3 hours by buses to the southwest. The nearby Karanlık Kanyon ("Dark Canyon") is a major hotspot of adventure sports.
|Routes through Erzincan|
|Amasya ← Niksar ( S) ←||W E||→ Erzurum → Doğubayazıt|
|Ankara ← Sivas ←||W E||→ Ends at|
|Ankara ← Divriği ←||W E||→ Erzurum → Kars|