Traditional Ottoman wooden houses


The Unesco listed village of Safranbolu, Northern Turkey 

Turkey's wooden houses
A traveler we met in Eastern Turkey who had traveled around the world in the 70ies told us not much had improved : the number of people and cars has exploded and the environment has suffered a lot. Another aspect he regretted is the vanishing of traditional housing under a blanket of brick and concrete. Even if many are in a very poor state, there are still many traditional houses in Turkey. 


After 10 days of continuous rain in Istanbul... it became even worse ! (left), entire fields flooded by recent rain fall (centre) and the biggest ever traffic jam as snow falls and cars spin their way up hills (right) 


Impressive 19th century wooden houses in Safranbolu


Traditional Turkish wooden houses usually have 2 or 3 stories. The timber is used as skeleton for the house and mud and straw are used to fill up empty spaces. Some houses were left like that but in cities they were usually covered with plaster or whitewash. Rich owners usually had a double door to allow carts in. The larger houses had 10 to 12 rooms divided in women's quarters (haremlik) and men's quarters (selamlik). 



The wood-work continues inside as rooms have integrated niches or built-in cupboards. The most elaborate work is usually found on ceilings and washing facilities were often concealed behind closets !




Ottoman style houses in the cosy village of Amasya


We are doing well !

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