Fatsa is a town and a large district of Ordu Province
Ordu Province
Ordu Province is a province of Turkey, located on the Black Sea coast. Its adjacent provinces are Samsun to the northwest, Tokat to the southwest, Sivas to the south, and Giresun to the east. Its traffic code is 52...

 in the central Black Sea region of Turkey
Turkey , known officially as the Republic of Turkey , is a Eurasian country located in Western Asia and in East Thrace in Southeastern Europe...



The name Fatsa derives from Fanizan daughter of King Pharnaces II of Pontus
Pharnaces II of Pontus
Pharnaces II of Pontus, also known as Pharnaces II was a prince, then King of Pontus and the Bosporan until his death. He was a monarch of Persian and Greek Macedonian ancestry. Pharnaces II was the youngest son and child born to King Mithridates VI of Pontus from his first wife, his sister Queen...

 and has since mutated through Fanise, Phadsane, Pytane, Facha and today's Fatsa. In the Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 records the town as its name Satılmış. The Greeks called it also Polemonion and Side. It may have been the ancient Phabda.


The district is a strip of coastline with hills and rocky mountains rising steeply behind, watered by the rivers of Yapraklı and Belice. The Canik Mountains run parallel to the coast behind Fatsa. The local economy depends on agriculture and fishing: 80% of arable land is planted with hazelnuts (see Corylus avellana
Corylus avellana
Corylus avellana, the Common Hazel, is a species of hazel native to Europe and western Asia, from the British Isles south to Iberia, Greece, Turkey and Cyprus, north to central Scandinavia, and east to the central Ural Mountains, the Caucasus, and northwestern Iran. It is an important component of...

) and there are fishing fleets harboured at Fatsa and in the small towns of Yalıköy and Bolaman. Also the Black Sea coastal highway runs through here bringing passing trade. The higher mountain areas of the district are covered in forest. The climate is typical of the Black Sea
Black Sea
The Black Sea is bounded by Europe, Anatolia and the Caucasus and is ultimately connected to the Atlantic Ocean via the Mediterranean and the Aegean seas and various straits. The Bosphorus strait connects it to the Sea of Marmara, and the strait of the Dardanelles connects that sea to the Aegean...

 coast, mild and wet most of the year.

Fatsa itself is a large town of 63,721 people with a large central shopping district of streets, some pedestrianised, leading down to the seafront. The district of Bolaman was once the Roman town of Poleman and has the ruins of a castle and places to drink tea by the water.

Places of interest

The countryside and coast of Fatsa are pretty in spring and summer and a number of places attract visitors including:
  • the mineral water springs of Ilıca.
  • The Pontus
    Pontus or Pontos is a historical Greek designation for a region on the southern coast of the Black Sea, located in modern-day northeastern Turkey. The name was applied to the coastal region in antiquity by the Greeks who colonized the area, and derived from the Greek name of the Black Sea: Πόντος...

     era monastery of Göreği, 5 km west of Fatsa near the...
    • Çıngırt rock and caves
  • Gaga lake - 10 km south-east of Fatsa
  • The ruins of Bolaman Castle
    Bolaman Castle
    Bolaman Castle is a converted castle located in Fatsa in the Black Sea region of Turkey. It consist of two main parts, the inner and the outer castle. Inside the castle there is a small chapel that was built according to the basilical plan . A wooden residence was built on the inner castle in the...

There is a summer festival in Fatsa of sports, a beauty contest etc.


The history of Fatsa goes back to antiquity, when the coast was settled by Cimmerians
The Cimmerians or Kimmerians were ancient equestrian nomads of Indo-European origin.According to the Greek historian Herodotus, of the 5th century BC, the Cimmerians inhabited the region north of the Caucasus and the Black Sea during the 8th and 7th centuries BC, in what is now Ukraine and Russia...

, Persian people
Persian people
The Persian people are part of the Iranian peoples who speak the modern Persian language and closely akin Iranian dialects and languages. The origin of the ethnic Iranian/Persian peoples are traced to the Ancient Iranian peoples, who were part of the ancient Indo-Iranians and themselves part of...

 and Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek is the stage of the Greek language in the periods spanning the times c. 9th–6th centuries BC, , c. 5th–4th centuries BC , and the c. 3rd century BC – 6th century AD of ancient Greece and the ancient world; being predated in the 2nd millennium BC by Mycenaean Greek...

 colonists in the centuries BC, followed by Alexander the Great and his successors. The town grew in importance under the Kingdom of Pontus
Pontus or Pontos is a historical Greek designation for a region on the southern coast of the Black Sea, located in modern-day northeastern Turkey. The name was applied to the coastal region in antiquity by the Greeks who colonized the area, and derived from the Greek name of the Black Sea: Πόντος...

, particularly during the reign of Pharnaces II the ally of Pompey
Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus, also known as Pompey or Pompey the Great , was a military and political leader of the late Roman Republic...

 against Julius Caesar
Julius Caesar
Gaius Julius Caesar was a Roman general and statesman and a distinguished writer of Latin prose. He played a critical role in the gradual transformation of the Roman Republic into the Roman Empire....

 in the 1st century BC, who built the city here. Following the demise of Pontus the area passed into Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome was a thriving civilization that grew on the Italian Peninsula as early as the 8th century BC. Located along the Mediterranean Sea and centered on the city of Rome, it expanded to one of the largest empires in the ancient world....

 and Byzantine Empire
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...


Turkish people
Turkish people
Turkish people, also known as the "Turks" , are an ethnic group primarily living in Turkey and in the former lands of the Ottoman Empire where Turkish minorities had been established in Bulgaria, Cyprus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Greece, Kosovo, Macedonia, and Romania...

s came to the area in the 11th century following the Battle of Manzikert
Battle of Manzikert
The Battle of Manzikert , was fought between the Byzantine Empire and Seljuq Turks led by Alp Arslan on August 26, 1071 near Manzikert...

 and the Black Sea coast was quickly conquered by the Danishmends
The Danishmend dynasty was a Turcoman dynasty that ruled in north-central and eastern Anatolia in the 11th and 12th centuries. The centered originally around Sivas, Tokat, and Niksar in central-northeastern Anatolia, they extended as far west as Ankara and Kastamonu for a time, and as far south as...

 emir Sevli Bey, and settled by Turkish immigrants. In the 13th and 14th centuries Genoese
Genoa |Ligurian]] Zena ; Latin and, archaically, English Genua) is a city and an important seaport in northern Italy, the capital of the Province of Genoa and of the region of Liguria....

 traders established trading posts along the coast, Fatsa became one of the most important of these, and there is a stone warehouse on the shore built in this period. She was shortly occupied by Empire of Trebizond
Empire of Trebizond
The Empire of Trebizond, founded in April 1204, was one of three Byzantine successor states of the Byzantine Empire. However, the creation of the Empire of Trebizond was not directly related to the capture of Constantinople by the Fourth Crusade, rather it had broken away from the Byzantine Empire...

. The Genoese presence in the Black Sea ended with the fall of Constantinople
Constantinople was the capital of the Roman, Eastern Roman, Byzantine, Latin, and Ottoman Empires. Throughout most of the Middle Ages, Constantinople was Europe's largest and wealthiest city.-Names:...

 but Fatsa later thrived again under the Hacı Emir Oğulları Anatolian Beyliks in the late 14th century and became part of the Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 in 1427. She was part of Canik sanjak until 1921.

In the 19th century the population increased as Armenia
Armenia , officially the Republic of Armenia , is a landlocked mountainous country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia...

ns, Georgia
Georgia (country)
Georgia is a sovereign state in the Caucasus region of Eurasia. Located at the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Europe, it is bounded to the west by the Black Sea, to the north by Russia, to the southwest by Turkey, to the south by Armenia, and to the southeast by Azerbaijan. The capital of...

ns and Caucasus
The Caucasus, also Caucas or Caucasia , is a geopolitical region at the border of Europe and Asia, and situated between the Black and the Caspian sea...

 Turks migrated to the coast to escape the wars between Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

 and the Ottomans. The Greek Christian community remained and thrived as craftsmen and bureaucrats until the Population exchange between Greece and Turkey
Population exchange between Greece and Turkey
The 1923 population exchange between Greece and Turkey was based upon religious identity, and involved the Greek Orthodox citizens of Turkey and the Muslim citizens of Greece...

 in 1923, when 770 families of Turks from Greece were settled in the town and villages of Fatsa. In this period the town remained a port and trading post, there was no coast road to Ünye
Ünye is a large town and district of Ordu Province in the Black Sea region of Turkey, 76 km west of the city of Ordu. In 2009 it had 74,806 inhabitants.-Geography:Ünye has a little port, in a bay on one of the flatter areas of the Black Sea coast...

 or Ordu
Ordu 'army') is a port city on the Black Sea coast of Turkey, and the capital of Ordu Province. Estimated population c. 2010: 141,341.-Etymology:...

 and the port thrived. Corn, rice and other grains were grown in the hinterland and from the 1920s onwards hazelnuts were planted, when rice growing ceased as the coastal swamps were dried up by irrigation works and the town grew.

In the 1970s Fatsa municipality was controlled by the left wing mayor Fikri Sönmez and his Devrimci Yol
People's Liberation Army of Turkey-Revolutionary Path of Turkey
People's Liberation Army of Turkey-Revolutionary Path of Turkey was a splinter-group of the People's Liberation Army of Turkey . THKO-TDY appeared in 1975...

 organisation of local committees under the slogan "The red sun will rise in Fatsa". During that time a communal management of the city was set, where the different aspects of life and administration were discussed. The committees were formed by the people of the municipality and had power to recall government authorities. A major incident in this period was the kidnapping by the THKO in 1972 of three British technicians from the radar station ın Ünye. This era ended when, upon the initiative of the MHP
Nationalist Movement Party
The Nationalist Movement Party , is a far-right political party in Turkey.In the 2002 general elections, the party had lost its 129 seats as it had won only 8.34% of the national vote...

 supporting provincial governor, the mayor and 300 others were arrested in the "Nokta Operasyonu" of July 1980, two months before the 1980 Turkish coup d'état. Throughout this period Fatsa lost a significant number of its people as they migrated away to jobs in Turkey's larger cities or abroad, including a large proportion of the Turkish community in Japan
Japan is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south...


Today the municipality is controlled by conservative AK Party
Justice and Development Party (Turkey)
The Justice and Development Party , abbreviated JDP in English and AK PARTİ or AKP in Turkish, is a centre-right political party in Turkey. The party is the largest in Turkey, with 327 members of parliament...

 and her mayor is Hüseyin Anlayan.

Notable natives

  • The legendary bandits Hekimoğlu, murdered in 1910, and Soytaroğlu. Gang leaders during clashes between Turks and Georgians in the 19th century.
  • Fikri Sönmez ("Fikri the tailor") - revolutionary left-wing mayor of Fatsa in the 1970s. (b. Fatsa 1938 - d. Amasya 1985)
  • Film actor and symbol of machismo
    Machismo, or machoism, is a word of Spanish and Portuguese origin that describes prominently exhibited or excessive masculinity. As an attitude, machismo ranges from a personal sense of virility to a more extreme male chauvinism...

     Kadir İnanır
    Kadir Inanir
    Kadir İnanır is a popular Turkish film actor and director.- Biography :İnanır was born in 1949 in Fatsa, a town in Ordu province of Turkey. He acted in forty-three films since 1967 and appeared on television in "Bütün Çocuklarım" as Ali Yahya in 2004...

     (b Fatsa 1949 - )
  • Singer Mehmet Gümüş -
  • Singer Soner Arıca
    Soner Arica
    Soner Arica is a Turkish singer and record producer.-Biography:He was born as the youngest of seven children in the Fatsa district of Ordu Province, Turkey. Later he moved to Istanbul and studied in Şişli College. Having graduated from the college, he continued his education and obtained a degree...

     (b Fatsa 1966 - )
  • Footballer and coach Erdoğan Arıca
    Erdogan Arica
    Erdoğan Arıca is a Turkish football manager and coach. As a footballer, he played defender. He is also the brother of the singer Soner Arıca and the nephew of Kadir İnanır.-Career:...

    (b Fatsa 1954 - )

External links

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