Nilüfer On The Traces of History
Nilüfer is surrounded by traces of history and the cultural and natural heritages that carry these traces, take the history of the region back to ancient ages Historical richness of Nilüfer, has also been taken under protection by being registered by Bursa Cultural and Natural Heritage Preservation Board (BKTVKK). Within this scope, Akçalar Aktopraklık Tumulus, Alaaddinbey Tepecik Tumulus, Gölyazı, Ürünlü where Kite Castle is located are proclaimed as archaeological SIT areas; the whole Gölyazı and Tahtalı Village as urban archaeological SIT areas; Gümüştepe (Misi) as urban SIT area. Balat forests, Fadıllı Village, Gölyazı Islands region, surroundings of Kayapa Pond, some parts of Odunluk and Ürünlü also taken under protection by being proclaimed as natural SIT area. The Municipality of Nilüfer who is a member of the Union of Historical Towns since 2005, is carrying out many projects for the purpose of conserve and maintain the historical and cultural heritage of the region.
1. Traces of Fikirtepe Culture in Akçalar
Aktopraklık location of Akçalar town which is today a quarter subordinated to Nilüfer, has a great importance not only for Bursa but also for the history of culture of Anatolia and Europe with the traces that it carries from prehistoric ages to nowadays. Fikirtepe culture, represents the oldest agriculture/village societies that are known to be the first to adopt a sedentary life. Within this scope, it is known that the farming first came to the northwestern parts of Anatolia in Fikirtepe age and shortly after became widespread in the southeastern Europe. Also identified as the ‘Neolithic Revolution’ the period that a sedentary life based on agriculture has been adopted instead of hunter-nomadic life, is accepted as one of the most important phases of the cultural history and as the period that the essentials of nowadays culture have been formed. Having a critical importance about the emergence of first farming societies and the deployment from Anatolia to Europe, Aktopraklık is the most westerly settlement of Fikirtepe culture. The outputs gathered from the Aktopraklık Tumulus, shows that the settlements here go down to Late Roman Period (BC 6300- AD 2nd Century) from the prehistoric period. In the region the ruins of two villages where the first agricultural societies established on the riverbanks have been revealed. Akçalar of which the importance was increased through the historical treasure in Aktopraklık, is a historical town established on the east shore of Lake Uluabat. In the town which is among the Yıldırım Mosque foundations according to the Ottoman period registers, was invaded and destroyed by the Greeks during the War of Independence. The Hacı Recep Mosque dated 1767-1768 within the town in which there is a Turkish bath of which the construction is unknown, was constructed by the Byzantine ruins of columns and column headings. Being named after the white birch (akça ağaç) which is a rife tree in the region, in Akçalar, according to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook there was 224 dwelling houses. The municipality in Akçalar established in 1976 was abolished in 2009 and the Kurtuluş and Zafer quarters of the town were attached to Nilüfer.
* Aktopraklık Open-air Museum
Tumulus which is located on a prone plain with a lake scene, losing altitude
towards the stream, is quite different from the multiplex tumulus of prehistoric
Anatolia. These kind of settlements in which the buildings are apart from each
other and which were constructed with wooden materials, recall the Fikirtepe
Within the archaeological excavations in Aktopraklık Tumulus being performed since 2004 by İstanbul University, live traces of first prehistoric farmer communities were discovered.
The ‘stone substructure’ discovered within the excavations, is presumed to be the remains of the supporting wall for directing the flow of water. Within the region where the remains of square planned structures were discovered, also pots and pans used for cooking and hand tools made of bones, a lot of marble bracelets and beads, worship figurines which reflect the belief systems of the time, bones of lamb, goat, cow and herbal ruins were found. In a grave within the tumulus where also ruins of late Roman/Byzantine settlements were found, funeraries with arms and legs connected on the chest, lots of stoneware and marble bracelets were discovered.
In the region opposite of the Aktopraklık tumulus, ruins of a church and a palace complex dated to Late Roman/Early Byzantine period were found.
The practices so far revealed that there was a continuous settlement within the vicinity from the Neolithic Era till Middle Chalcolithic Era.
The region is being arranged as an open-air museum.
2. Traces of Bronze Age in Ertuğrul
Being one of the initial quarters of Nilüfer, Ertuğrul was a village attached to Çalı till 1987. The former name of the village located on the Karacabey road was ‘Çayırköy’. It is presumed that this name was given to the village as it was the domain meadow during the Ottoman period. The village which was established by the immigrants came after the 1877-1878 Ottoman-Russian War, is mentioned in the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook.
* Çayırköy Tumulus
The Çayırköy Tumulus located near the Ertuğrul Quarter and west of Alaaddinbey road is 5 meters high and has a 90 meters circumference. Through the investigations within the tumulus on which agricultural activities were carried out, intense tile pieces, obsidians, fire stone tools, whorls and bone tools were discovered. The color of the tiles are grey and sober red. All were well wired and glazed. The hook-mouth pitchers, pots and dishes are coetaneous with the tiles discovered on the 5th and the 6th layers of Troia excavations. Dated to 1900-1700 BC Bronze Age.
3. Alive History of Nilüfer Misi: Gümüştepe
Misi is a
settlement surrounded by four hills covered by forests, and established on a
prone area on the way to Orhaneli. The area where the Gümüştepe Quarter of
Nilüfer is today located, is one of the oldest settlements of Bursa. As well, it
is predicted that there was a settlement in the area before the establishment of
According to Herodotus, ‘the father of history’, Myses’ which was one of the six tribes passing through Anatolia from Thrace in 1816 BC, have established a union known as Mysians. Being the first known tribe passing through the east from the west in the world history, Mysians have established three settlements named ‘Misipolis’ (Misi-currently Gümüştepe Quarter), ‘Misapoli’ and ‘Eşkel’. Established on the hills of holly mountain ‘Olympos’ (Uludağ), Misi has been a center of beliefs before and after the Christianity. In 183 AD, a monk named Alex who first arrived in İstanbul and then in Bursa from West Rome because of the influence of Western Romans, has dwelled in Misi and İnkaya Village together with 85 followers as the initiators of the Christianity. The monks bifurcated and spread through the hills of Olympos namely Keşiş Mountain. As the vicinty is a channel that is convenient for disguising, caused the monks to establish a powerful missionary organization for ages. In this period, a consul in Misi has assembled and researched the spirit of the Bible which has been rewritten three times and discussed about Bible in Misipoli Monastery. Referring to this information, it is persuaded that in Misi, in the aforementioned monastery, a copy of the Bible is buried. The monastery in which exacavations made in 1953, has been depredated by treasure hunters and by historical artifacts depredators.
Misi was an important center before the conquest also for the Ottomans. It’s said that Orhan Gazi conquered Misi for the invasion of Bursa in 1316 and constructed a castle in Kestel. In this period Misi is presumed to be the temporary Capital city for 10 years.
Misi, of which the most of the inhabitants were Christians in the Ottoman period is known as the endowment of imaret of I.Murat in Çekirge. 174 dwelling houses were registered in the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook.
Being evacuated by the Christian community after the War of Independence, Misi is an attractive vicinity at all times through its geological features. Travellers from West during the entire history, passed by and accommodated in Misi which was located on the Silk Road. Cause the Nilüfer Spring which flows very strongly does not let any crossing else than Misi.
Misi is also very popular with its wines which is presumed to be related to the Christianity. The wine consumed in the Misi churches was made of the Misi grapes, even wines were sent to Byzantine from this vicinity.
Misi Protection and Maintenance Project
Today Misi is popular with the old houses remained stable with their authentic architecture. Therefore, most of the buildings in the area which has been proclaimed as Urban SIT area in 1989, have been constructed in the mid 18th Century and also it is presumed that there are some buildings dating from the 17th Century some historical buildings including the old school building have been renovated and re-functioned as community center, museum, science center, nursery and bookstore.
The face decontamination practices carried out in Alipaşa Street where Misi Mosque and other historical houses located, Nilüfer Street, Sultan Street, Maksem Street and Bardakçı Street, have been deemed suitable for the encouragement award of the Union of Historical Towns
Also the fountain in form of late Ottoman architecture style with marble plantal motives neighbouring the registered building no 25 in Maskem Street, has been renovated by the maintained original pieces and dedicated.
4. The City of Apollon The Lord of Light: Gölyazı (Apollania-Apollonia ad Ryndacum-Apolyont-Abulyond)
times there was a city on the lake formed by the Ryndakos Stream (Orhaneli
Stream) which was the border between Bithynia and Mysia in Anatolia: Apollonia
Altough its claimed that the city was named as Apollonia by the King of Pergamon II. Attalos in honor of Queen Apollonis, this name was derived from the combination of; Apa (water), ull (bushy) and wana (god) in Luwi language. In fact Apollonia was the common name given to the places where Apollon temples were located and it is known that in ancient age there were 9 cities named Apollonia in Anatolia. As Gölyazı was settled on the banks of Ryndakos Stream, it was diversified from the others as with the noun phrase of ‘ad Ryndacum’. The Apollonia ad Ryndacum name in ancient age was transformed into Apolyont and in Turkish to Abulyond.
Being the oldest settlement of Nilüfer full of historical ruins, Apollonia ad Ryndacum was claimed to be established in the 4th Century BC, and mentioned in the resources as from the 1st Century BC.
The city which was initially attached to Bithynia Prelacy during the Byzantine period, afterwards was attached to Nicomedia (İzmit) and Kios (Gemlik) Prelacy. In this period the city was named Theotokia.
When the Ottoman won the Bafeum War in Osmanlılar 1302, they chased off the Kite Landlord who took refuge in Lopadion and came in front of Apollonia ad Ryndacum for the first time; stepped back when there was an agreement for surrendering the landlord, only captured the Alyos Island within the lake. The son of Aygutalp who was the fellow soldier of Osman Gazi, the first famous sailor of Osmanoğulları Kara (Emir) Ali conquered the island and as a result of this the connection Apollonia ad Ryndacum with Lopadion and thus with Byzantine was lost.
The name of Apollonia ad Ryndacum in which the Christian community predominated in the Ottoman times but where the Christian and Muslim Ottoman citizens lived together, was transformed into Apolyont in colloquial speech.
According to the registers of the 15th Century, there were 139 dwelling houses within the vicinity. Apolyont in which there were 514 dwelling houses according to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook, was relatively less destroyed during the War of Independence as it was far away from the main road. After the War of Independence, during the yield of the Greeks, most of the Christians in the village migrated to Greece. After the Population Exchange Act, there was a mutual exchange of the inhabitants.
The name Apolyont was changed as Gölyazı with the Republic period. The municipality of the vicinity established in 1994 was abolished in 2009 and the Merkez and Bayır quarters were attached to the Municipality of Nilüfer.
* Apollonia Ancient City
Being dwelled continuously for ages, Gölyazı has a unique feature for being a vicinity which still maintain the tradition distilled from the various hosted civilizations both spatially and economically. Apollonia ancient city, presently Gölyazı, was established on a peninsula which ranges to Lake Apolyont (Uluabat) as a natural dockage and on an island which is connected to the peninsula by means of a bridge. The ancient ruins are densely on the island whereas some ruins also discovered within the peninsula. The ruins of the Apollonia ancient city, starts at the point after departing 3,7 kilometers from the Bursa-İzmir motorway, the traces of the ancient road can be seen on the surface in Deliktaş. ‘Deliktaş’ surrounded by olive trees is presumed to be a construction or a aqueduct. ‘Necropolis’ starting with the ancient roads ranges towards the lake bank where many tomb basins and covers were discovered. The ‘Outer Castle’ called as the ‘Taş Kapı’ by public, was constructed for controlling the narrowest part of peninsula. When the water level rise, this part of the peninsula gets flooded and turns into an island. It’s understood that this castle was 100 meters long and 8,5 meters thick according to the traces. On the western part of the west-east directed walls, there is a bastion in square prism shape with each side 8,5 meters. The bastion was constructed by the stones of the open-air theatre within the vicinity. The island which is currently connected to the peninsula with a bridge was surrounded by castle walls for about 4,5 kilometers long and bastions. Most of these ruins were used as a basement for the new constructions. The bastion at the northeast of the island maintained. All of the stones constituting the bastion were dated to Roman period. The marble architectural structure which consists of 6 pieces of Greek tablets aligned side by side is remarkable. On the upper part of these pieces, fifteen “chopped steer head” are tied to each other with girlants. Over the girlants rosettes with sometimes four sometimes five leaves, wind rose and shield motives were carved. It is known that the Epigraph continues in two pieces on the northern part of the bastion. It was presumed to be written on the city gate in honor of Roman Emperor Hadrian (117-138) who visited Apollonia during the Cyzikos trip but then taken off from there and was used on the bastion for the second time. The ruin known as ‘Simitçi Kale’ is constructed on a rectangular plan. The arch at north maintained. Major part of the walls try to stand still willingly to maintain the old glorious times. The 45X50 meters size ‘Ancient Theatre’ leans to the hillside which is called ‘Gavur Mezarlığı’ in colloquial speech. The cavea and orchestra parts of the theatre are visible. The cavea of 75 meters diameter is presumed to have a capacity of about 4.000 spectators. The architectural parts were removed and used in the construction of the walls. Apollonia is the vicinity with most churches in Bursa and around. Some churches fully maintained whereas only basement ruins left back from some. There is a church basement with 16,40 meters long and 9,20 meters wide near the coastline. The wall thickness is 1,10 meters. Inner parts were separated with white stripes 0,035 meter vertically, 0,015 meter horizontally.
* Hagios (Saint) Panteleiman Church
The church on the peninsula entrance was constructed in the second half of the 19th Century. The walls of the rectangular planned structure were laid by bricks and quarries alternately. Cut stone were used on the exterior wall ranks and window sashes and under fringe molding. The unique wooden building maintained partially. It’s observed that the roof was protected with iron connections apart from the wooden connections. In the church with full four walls, there are also column headings bearing interesting reliefs. Being one of the rare maintained churches in Bursa, the Hagios Panteleiman Church is one of the remarkable samples of Greek classical architecture. The building is planned to serve as a cultural house after the renovation practices started in 2009 were completed by the Municipality of Nilüfer.
In Lake Uluabat, apart from the island on which the Apollonia ancient city is located on Gölyazı, there are also historical ruins on Alios (Alyos-Halilbey) and Manastır (Nailbey) islands.
* Alios (Alyos-Halilbey) Island
The island captured by the Ottomans in 1302, subsequently named as ‘Kız Island’, ‘Keşiş Island’, ‘Halilbey Island’. In Alios which mostly confused with Galios/Galyos Island (İmralı) and which is the biggest island on Lake Uluabat, there are ruins from the Byzantine period.
* Apollon Temple
It’s known that the Apollon Temple which named the city, was on Kız Island through the notes and the illustrations of Lé Bas who visited the vicinity in 1800s. Through the researches made within the island and around, the Hellenistic temenos wall in dimensions of 70X50 m which surrounds this area preserve the geographical form and on the western side stepladders entrance in semicircle form was determined. The genuine height of the wall is about 1,5 meters. In respect of the scenery, the island is entirely the holly field of Lord Apollon and he has a temple here. On the eastern side of the wall, mooring blocks were located. Also the column pulleys and bases which are presumed to be parts of the temple, are located outside the temenos wall, within the lake. The magnificent marble walls of the temple ruin within the Kız Island, is worthseeing although they sometimes submerge. According to Dr. Bedri Yalman, the Apollon Temple coined on the money during the Roman Emperor Caracalla who reigned between 198-217 is this temple. Apparently from the relief on the coin, the frontal part of the temple was with 4 columns and triangle frontal. It’s being claimed that the stones of the temple were used in the construction of Haydarpaşa Port.
* Manastır Island (Nailbey Island): The Island of Turkish Robinson
In Lake Uluabat, the second biggest island after Alios Island is the Manastır Island located west of Gölyazı, southeast of Eskikaraağaç Village of Karacabey. Being named as the ‘Happy Island by Gölyazı inhabitants, began being called as the Nailbey Island after Ziya Nail Dölen who was known as the Turkish Robinson during 1940s began living here. Ziya Nail Dölen of whose life is full of mysteries was born in Eskicuma, Bulgaria. According to the stories, he took the hills during the Balkan wars and fought against Bulgarians, and escaped to Paris when the Ottomans recoiled and took higher education about agriculture there. Dölen who came to Turkey and dwelled in Bursa in the early years of Republican period, was outcasted for unknown reasons, bough the island on Lake Uluabat for 2.300 liras in 1940 and began living here. Making friends with the fishermen and the villagers, Dölen was popular for protecting the Byzantine ruins and the environment. When he passed on February 20, 1950 he was buried to Gölyazı Cemetery with the gravestone bearing this epitaph: The grandson of Cumai Balalı Hacı Mehmet Bey and the son of Ziya Bey, dweller of Happy Island, 1886/20 February 1950.
* Hagios (Saint) Constantinos (Helena) Church
In Manastır Island, there are ruins of the Hagios Constantinos (Helena) Church of the Byzantine period. The construction of the building which is one of the oldest sacred buildings of the region is dated as the 9th-10th Centuries. Was considerably restored and renovated by the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th centuries. Constructed in form of Closed Greek Cross, the walls of the church were laid by 5 rows of bricks and rough stone. The dome is completely demolished. Visiting the island in the 16th Century, S. Gerlach narrates that the church was dedicated to Saint Constantinos and six or seven monks lived here.
* Theotokia Church
Apart from the Gölyazı, Halilbey and Nailbey islands, there are small islands within the Lake Uluabat as Kerevit Island, Kızadası, Terzioğlu Island and Arifmolla Island. Also within these islands, structural ruins of the Byzantine period are discovered. One of these is ‘Theotokhia’ which is of the Christanity Age buildings. Bilge Umar claims that the name of this church derived from ‘Theotokos’in Hellenic and means ‘god procreant/home of Mary’.
* Gölyazı Wind Mill
The door of the wind mill located in the school garden in Gölyazı Bayır Quarter is southward, currently out of use.
* Gölyazı Primary School
The primary school in Gölyazı nearby the mosque was 4-5 storey. The upper floors of the school was destroyed, the northwestern part of the extant entrance floor is considerably demolished.
* Civil Architecture in Gölyazı
The most common plan types of the dwelling houses within the Gölyazı settlement are; reverse L sofa, side sofa, mid sofa and rarely side T sofa. The buildings on the northeast of the island constituting the Merkez Quarter courtyard houses whereas the ones on southeast are garden houses. The garden houses on the southeastern part attest to the assertions that this half of the island was not inhabited during the ancient ages and the Ottoman period and utilized for agriculture. Particularly during the times when the silkwormbreeding was the main income, the spatial buildings were mostly 4-5 storey. As the silkwormbreeding was abandoned, the upper floors were out of use and thus vertical utilization decreased and storey heights significantly reduced.
* The Crying Plane Tree
The historical plane tree by the bridge which connects the peninsula to Gölyazı Island, is one of the oldest plane trees in Bursa. As of 2010, the 735 year old plane tree bears international monumental tree sign. The plane tree providing 400 meters shadow, is named as the ‘Crying Plane Tree’ for shedding the sap. A fish restaurant and a tea garden is located around the tree. By the efforts of Biologist Mehmet Okatan, General Directorate of Motorways put the monumental tree sign and the ‘Crying Plane Tree’ name plate. The signboard in front of the plane tree bears this poem of Mehmet Okatan: “A plane tree, slanted by the fatigue of the history. But still has hope against all hope, laid as such Afflicted, the leaves are sad, in deep sorrow As an interpreter of the wars, griefs, blind loves Behind a love garden, a rosebud that can not blossom In front, the work of tears in streams, a giant lake.”
5. The City Exists Before Bursa: Tahtalı
It’s presumed that the oldest and the most important settlement before the establishment of Bursa, was around Tahtalı whereas the ruins of a castle and church verifies this claim. One of these is the castle ruins which is currently under private property. Around the village many pieces of Roman and Byzantine ruins are discovered. Being one of the settlements where the Greep population is in majority during the Ottoman period, Tahtalı is among the foundation villages of Çelebi Mehmet. During the War of Independence, the village was attacked and burnt down. 156 dwelling houses were registered according to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hudavendigar City Yearbook.
* Historical and Cultural Properties of Tahtalı Village
The settlement of Tahtalı Village where a constant dwelling exist from the 2nd Century BC till today, is partially within the ancient city walls. The Byzantine period walls are partially extant. Also one of the portcullis within the village is maintained. The castle ruins and the length of the walls demonstrate that the ancient city was established on a quite wide area. According to the common rumours within Tahtalı which was settled on the hills of Uludağ and within the surrounding villages, the tunnel with an arched entrance within the castle body but now filled with soil, runs along the Kite (Ürünlü) Castle on the north. On the Filetepe which is the highest peak of Tahtalı Village, there are some ruins of an observation tower and on the western and eastern parts of the settlement there are necropolis fields. The ruins of the Hagios Theodoros Church, which is presumed to be one of the oldest churches in Bursa remained from the Byzantine period are in Tahtalı Village. The graveyard and the gravestones of the Tahtalı Village dwellers who were martyrized by the Greeks during the War of Independence, are maybe the most interesting war grave of Turkey. On the grave stones of the martyrs the arm by which that person was killed is carved.
6. Traces of The Lost City Caesareia Germanica in Görükle
Being one of the quarters of Nilüfer after the abolishment of the town municipalities, Görükle is also one of the oldest settlements in the vicinity. According to the Byzantine bibliographies, the vicinity was attacked by the Turks in 1304 and they appealed for help from the Byzantine commander Makrenos in 1305 in Lopadion (Uluabat). Presumed to be attached to Kite before the Ottomans, Görükle is mentioned as ‘Görüklü’ village attached to the Kite Town within the 16th Century Ottoman registers. There were 49 dwelling houses and 49 absolute inhabitants in the village at that times. According to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook, there were 219 dwelling houses within the village. Görükle, in which the Muslim and the Christian community lived together during the Ottoman period, was very popular with silkwormbreeding. Before 1920, on the May 2 of every year, spring festivals were organized on behalf of Hagios Athanasios. Once upon a time, the mud of the Görükle holy spring of Orthodox Greeks was used for treatment. After the War of Independence, Greek population migrate to Greece and established a new settlement near Kavala, ‘Nea Kouboukleis’ (New Görükle). They were replaced by the Turkish inhabitants coming from Kavala Thessaloniki after the Treaty of Lausanne. Also dwelling houses were built for the forced-immigrants from Bulgari in 1989. Displaying a significant development after the Republic, the town got more important with the establishment of the Uludağ University Campus and thus trade and cultural activities became widespread. Görükle where the municipal organization was established in 1957, was attached to Nilüfer together with its 7 quarters in 2009 after the abolishment of the town municipalities. Those quarters are; Büyükbalıklı, Dumlupınar, Gökçeköy, İrfaniye, Kurtuluş, Sakarya, Zafer…
* Historical Heritage of Görükle
The historical Church Fountain was restored in 2008. Within the vicinity where 2 registered civil architecture examples are housed, there is also a cistern. It’s claimed that the Kocameşe and Motormeşe parks housing monumental trees and the wells in the Republic Square were established by the Greeks. The Aya Yorgi Ayazma in Büyükbalıklı is one of the registered cultural property of Görükle.
* A Mausoleum Within The Görükle Campus
Recently, a development in the Uludağ University Görükle Campus, expanded new horizons both for Bursa and for Nilüfer. During an excavation within the campus, an ancient tomb and sesterces and pot pieces within the tomb were found. The bones of two different persons were anthropologically examined in USA, and it was affirmed that the one of the bones belongs to a man of 38-40 years old, 1,68 cm tall. The sesterce found in the tomb was verified to be a bronze obul (kurus). The sesterce was affirmed to belong to Bythinia King II. Prussisas and coined approximately between 180-140 BC. Within this framework the ancient tomb was dated to the 2nd Century BC. It’s being stated that the tomb was the first ancient tomb within Bursa and around of which the date is known and also there were some other tombs within the vicinity. The surface surveys over the tomb and surround, led the archaeologists to the lost ancient city Caesareia Germanica, of which the existence was known but no traces were found for ages.
7. Traces of Kite in Ürünlü
One of the
oldest settlements within Nilüfer is Kite (Kitai-Kete-Ürünlü) starting from the
Bythinia Kingdom (3rd Century BC) till Roman and Byzantine periods.
Kite was one of the most important feudal landlordship within the region attached to the Byzantine before the Ottomans. In the last periods of the Byzantine, particularly during the proceeding of the Ottomans towards west came into prominence and got well-known.
Kite, was conquered in 1302, after the Ottomans defeated the central army commanded by Muzalon in Bafeus (Bafeum Battle) on July 27, 1301, after the Dimboz Battle with the jointed army of Atranos (Orhaneli), Kestel and Kitai feudal landlordships.
After Osman Bey outflanked in the war, Kite Feudal Landlord escaped and sheltered to Lopadion (Uluabat) Feudal Landlord, but as the Ottoman army pursued him persistently and turned up to the portcullis the fugitive Feudal Landlord was surrendered to Osman Bey. The Feudal Landlord was slaughtered for the revenge of martyrized Aydoğdu Bey and the Kite Castle was captured.
Kite where Turkmenian dwelling has commenced as of 1302-1303, kept its prominence for a long time during the Ottoman period and was ruled as a town. According to the 16th Century registers, together with the Kite Plains, Nilüfer Valley at northwest and the Yuruk settlements behind and also Tirilye-Mudanya coastal region was under the authority of the Kite Kadi. Within the province borders, one town (Mudanya), 13 quarters, 91 villages, 5 farms, 3 Yuruk community and 14 hamlet were registered. There were taxable 235 dwelling houses and 995 single inhabitants. The nontaxable population was 1.615. According to the essays of Suleiman The Magnificent, Kite was the third crowded township after Bursa and Mihalıç (Karacabey) with 3.345 male taxpayers.
In the 19th Century Ottoman registers, Kite was mentioned as ‘Kete’ township (district) center attached to Bursa Sanjak. According to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hudavendigar City Yearbook, there were 57 registered dwelling houses.
Being named after Ürünlü within the Republic period, Kite was a village attached to Görükle sub-district until 1987. After the establishment of Nilüfer in 1987, it became a quarter.
BKTVKK (Bursa General Directorate of Cultural and Natural Heritage) who proclaimed the Arboretum fields in Ürünlü Quarter where City Volunteers Youth Camp is erected annually as a 1st degree natural SIT area, also proclaimed the region where the ruins of the Kite Castle are located as a 2nd degree archaeological SIT area on grounds of the resolution dated June 30, 1993 and registered the old village bath.
* Kite Castle
Located at southeast of Ürünlü Quarter, the Kite Castle was unique in history for being constructed on a plain terrain. Wall ruins of Kite Castle demonstrate that the castle was splendid. Today only the traces of three pieces of wall ruins in several heights and rectangular plan corner bastions can be seen. It is also interesting that the rectangular plan castle has neither supporting walls nor bastions.
* Kite Turkish Bath
The Turkish bath which is dated to Late Ottoman Period, is a typical village bath of which the main bathing spaces were covered with two domes, and the furnace is on the eastern side. Through very thick body walls with wiped triangle pendentives, one can pass towards the domes. The construction materials were taken from the castle nearby. The dressing cubicle is in the form of wooden cottage. It is currently abandoned.
8. Hagia Sophia of Bursa: Özlüce Cultural House
One of the oldest settlements in Nilüfer is the Özlüce Quarter which is 11 kilometers far from Bursa. Also being referred as ‘İnesi’ and ‘Eğnesil’, Another study in Nilüfer vicinity that is supported by the encouragement award of the Union of Historical Towns, has been applied in Özlüce Church. In Özlüce Church which is one of the few historical buildings that maintain in Nilüfer vicinty and also which is known as the “Hagia Sophia of Bursa” for being used both as a church and as a mosque in the past, a careful renovation has been carried out. The building which was constructed in the 19th century as Greek Orthodox Church and transformed into a mosque after the population exchange in the first years of the Republic but has not been utilized since the construction of new Özlüce mosque, has been renovated in accordance with the project that is also approved by the Cultural and Natural Heritage Preservation Board. The renovation which was carried out by the Municipality of Nilüfer, has been completed by the participation of masters who worked in the church renovations in Bulgaria. This historical building has been taken into service as a Cultural House with its new stylish appearance. One of the oldest settlements of Nilüfer is the Özlüce Quarter which is 11 kilometers far from Bursa. Also being called as ‘İnesi’ and ‘Eğnesil’, Özlüce was a village where the Muslim and the Christian community live together during the Ottoman period. Özlüce had been a place where the immigrants who migrated from Greece through the Population Exchange Treaty after the War of Independence were settled. According to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook, there were 88 registered dwelling houses. The most significant structure within the vicinity, is the Özlüce Church which is dated to the 19th Century and which is being known as the Hagia Sophia of Bursa for being used both as church and as mosque. The history of the Church and the person to whom the church was dedicated remains unknown. It is a three naved basilical plan church facing towards east. There is a narthex at the west side opening outwards with an arch. Internally cradle vaulted, externally double curved hipped roof covered. The walls were laid alternately with stone and brick, whereas the vault cover was made by plasterboard. The wooden stepladders on the corner goes up to the gallery storey. The floorings of the galleries on the west, north and south parts are wooden. Through the parapet boards of which only the traces can be seen under the plasters and paint goes through the naos. A profiled wipe surrounds the building internally and externally at the connection point of the wall and the cover. The structure of the church is being dated to the 19th Century on the evaluation of its stylistic features, materials and construction technique. The building which was transformed into a mosque after the population exchange when it was a Greek Orthodox Church, but which was not used anymore after the construction of the new mosque in 1992, has been renovated and transformed into a cultural house by the Municipality of Nilüfer
9. The Village of The Members of Kayı Clan: Kayapa
Being claimed to be established by the Kayı clan members coming from Orhaneli and Keles vicinities before the conquest of Bursa by Orhan Gazi, Kayapa was a village attached to Kite township for a long time during the Ottoman period. The name of Kayapa which was a foundation village of Çelebi Mehmet according to the yearbooks of 1530, is being mentioned in the official registers as from the 15th Century. Housing a mosque remaining from the 18th Century, in Kayapa, according to a document dated 1761, there was an Islamic monastery of Celvetiye Şeyhi Hüseyin Efendi. According to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook, there were 241 registered dwelling houses. Being blockaded by the Greek forces during the invasion of Bursa, losses of life and property were experienced within the village. The invaders who withdrew ravaged the village after the war, went on their way without entering Kayapa as they understood that the villagers would resist. Experiencing a flood disaster in 1946, Kayapa developed parallel to the development of Bursa after the Republic whereas attained electricity in 1970, and mains water in 1977. The municipality in Kayapa which is west of Bursa and 16 kilometers far from the city was established in 1972. As from 2009 when the township municipalities were abolished, Kayapa was attached to the Municipality of Nilüfer together with the Çamlık, İstiklal and Zafer quarters.
* Cultural and Natural Properties in Kayapa
In surroundings of Kayapa are the traces of an historical civilization. West and east of Değirmendere which has borders between Tahtalı Village Kayapa, there are some historical settlements from the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman periods and the ruins of a castle and an observation tower between Erintaşı Hill (Filetepe) within the borders of Tahtalı Village and Değirmendere. The castle ruins near the Kayapa Pond maintained till today. It’s claimed that there are some water conduits ranging from Kayapa to Kite Castle. Within Kayapa, there are two epigraphs on the northern entrance door of the mosque reconstructed in 1984. On one the date Islamic Calendar 1173 (1759-1760) and the name Hacı Mehmet Ağa was written whereas, on the other the date Islamic Calendar 1221 (1806-1807) and the name Hacı Mustafa Ağa was written. Only the minaret of the mosque which is presumed to be built by Hacı Mehmet Ağa according to the first epigraph maintained genuinely. On each three sides of the minaret bedplate, there are three epigraphs in three sizes. One is dated Islamic Calendar 1171 (1757-1758), the other Islamic Calendar 1173 (1759-1760) and the last Islamic Calendar 1175 (1761-1762) dated. The old fountain northwest of the Kayapa Mosque is presumed to be constructed by İstanbulite Hacı Osman Efendi in 1654-1655 (Islamic Calendar 1065) according to the epigraph.
10. The Village of Alaaddin Bey, The Elder Brother of Orhan Gazi
Being one of the very first quarters of Nilüfer, the former name of Alaaddinbey in the Ottoman period was ‘Fodra’, but also named as ‘Erikli/Erihli’. The new name of the quarter which was the foundation of Alaaddin Bey, the elder brother of Orhan Gazi derives from this. According to the history of Aşıkpaşazade, after the conquest of Bursa, Alaaddin Bey refused the proposal of his brother Orhan Gazi to be assigned nearby him by saying “Now you be my pasha”. He said, “There is a village in Kite plains called Fodra. Give it to me”. And Orhan Gazi accepted this request. In the Ottoman period, it was attached to Kite township and it was a settlement where mostly Greek originated inhabitants were dwelling. In Alaaddinbey, in which a small group of Balkan immigrants after the 1877-1878 Ottoman-Russian War was dwelled, there were 107 dwelling houses according to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook.
* Tepecik Tumulus
Tepecik Tumulus in Aladdinbey Quarter, bears evidences which give important information about the archaeology of the vicinity. The diameter of the tumulus is 100 meters, height is 6 meters. There are stoneware pieces on the surface of the tumulus. There is also an out of use Turkish bath in Alaaddinbey Quarter of which the constructor and the construction date are unknown.
11. A Historical Neighborhood in Nilüfer: Demirci
Demirci Quarter which is one of the foundations of Alaaddin Bey, brother of Orhan Gazi, was a village attached to Kite township where mostly Greek originated inhabitants were dwelling during the Ottoman period. According to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook there were 133 dwelling houses within the village. 5 Roman and Byzantine settlements were discovered around Demirci: Castulus, Merillos, Trapeza, Cabucome and Messon… Messon, is the Misi village presently.
* Demirci Mosque
Historical Demirci Mosque, which is one of the registered buildings in Nilüfer and came down in the world while trying to bear the traces of time, revived after the renovation within the efforts of maintaining the cultural heritage by the Municipality of Nilüfer. During the practices, when the interior layings have been cleaned, various paintings, decorations and hand-drawings came in sight. The authentic building which was abandoned for many years, has been re-functioned as a branch of Nilüfer Akkılıç Library which would meet the needs of the students of the region.
* Demirci Bath
There is a Turkish bath in Demirci, dated to the 15th Century of which the constructor is unknown. The dressing cubicle of the rectangular plan bath on north-south direction belatedly constructed and it has a flat ceiling. The domes are based on octagonal pulleys. The walls are internally plastered. There are saw tooth frieze brick decorations on the fringes. The original basins are also very old.
* Demirci Fountain
The fountain in front of the Demirci Bath has a marble basin. Also bearing an epigraph, the fountained still maintains yet to be ruined. The ornamental slab of the fountain which is currently dried up, is a single piece triangle marble. On the ornamental slab it is written ‘Sahibü’l-hayrat… el-hac Mehmet Efendi year 1250 (1834)’.
* Civil Architecture in Demirci
The structure on the Dere Street in Demirci was registered as a civil architecture sample. The roof of the two storey building is pantiled, the spaces between the studs and the supporting elements filled with adobe and ingot brick, adobe plastered, a corbelled and yard-type building.
12. Commander of Orhan Gazi Çalık Halil’s Village: Çalı
20 kilometers west Bursa, Çalı is believed to be established by Çalık Halil who is presumed to be one of the raiders of Orhan Gazi after the conquest of Bursa. Being a foundation of Murat The 2nd according to the registers, Çalı was village attached to Kite township according to the documents of the 18th Century. The village which had 187 dwelling houses according to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) Hüdavendigar City Yearbook, was used to be called as Çalıkhalil Karyesi (village), but then after the Republic named as Çalı. ‘Aysel-Bataklı Damın Kızı’ which is respected as the very first village film of Turkey, directed by Muhsin Ertuğrul, scenario by Nazım Hikmet Ran, musics composed by Cemal Reşit Rey and in which Cahide Sonku played the starring role was hot in Çalı. Çalı, of which the municipality was established in 1968, is a quarter of the Municipality of Nilüfer since 2009.
* Çalı Martyr: Private Martyr Fırla Dede Hill
The area where the grave of Private Fırla Dede who is believed to martyrized on a hill near Çalı during the conquest of Bursa, is located, currently set as a martyr. The project practices of the martyr has commenced on March 18, 2007 by the Municipality of Çalı; primarily the grave of Private Martyr Fırla Dede was set then an octagonal epigraph bedplate with a flagstaff of 46 meters was placed nearby the grave. Inaugurated on May 20, 2007 the surrounding of the martyr was afforested and walking paths were designated. Fırla Dede is said to be person who came to Anatolia from Khorasan and established the Dağyenice Village.
* Çalı Fountains and The Monumental Trees
There are two historical fountains in Çalı only the basins of which were maintained: The Gözlüklü Fountain and the Yörük Fountain… Both fountains were renovated and recommissioned. In Çalı and around, several planes and cypresses, one common hackberry and one chinese aborvitae bearing monumental features, were registered to the inventory to be protected.
13. An Ottoman Village in Nilüfer: Hasanağa
West of Bursa, Hasanağa took its name from Hasan Ağa who had a school, a lodge and a mosque done within the vicinity. Hasan Ağa, was a Janissary Landlord who had property foundations within Kızılcıklı Village of Bursa (presently Hasanağa) and in Thrace. During the interregnum being mixed up in affair within the throne struggle between Süleyman Çelebi and Musa Çelebi, Hasan Ağa was first took the side of Musa Çelebi but at the end of the period took service with Çelebi Mehmet. The vicinity being mentioned as ‘Kızılcuklu-Kızılcıklı’ within the registers was given to Hasan Ağa as a manor, and Hasan Ağa endowed the Kızılcıklı Village, his house and the hamlet called Bali farm within the village, the mosque and the small Islamic monastery in 1425. Being attached to the Kite township during the Ottoman period, there were 45 dwelling houses in Hasanağa according to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook. During the invasion Hasanağa was substantially burnt down, local Greek brigands discomforted the public as well as the Greek soldiers, losses of life and property were experienced. Apart from the martyrized ones, some others were either imprisoned or banished to Greece. The municipality in Hasanağa was established 1972. After the abolishment of the town municipalities the town was attached to the Municipality of Nilüfer as two quarters named Hasanağa and Kızılcıklı.
* Hacı Mustafa Ağa Mosque
Presently completely renovated, the Hacı Mustafa Ağa Mosque bears an epigraph of 31X34 centimeters on the northern facade, stating that the mosque was constructed by Hacı Mustafa Ağa in 1852-1853 (Islamic calendar 1269). The three rows Arabic epigraph is: Sahibü’l-hayrat ve’l-hasenat/ son of Mütevelli el-Hac/ Mustafa Ağa year 1269.
14. An Old Village Popular With Its Inn: Çatalağıl
Formerly known as Çatalhan, Çatalağıl is village west of Bursa, 28 kilometers far from the city center. It’s estimated that the village is a very old settlement and the name was either Konstanitzi or Ainatos. Located north of Lake Uluabat, Çatalağıl was a village attached to Mihalıç (Karacabey) during the Ottoman period where mostly Greek inhabitants were dwelling. According to the 1530 dated yearbooks, the village was a large settlement and the royal sheeps were being raised here. There were 52 dwelling houses within the village according to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook.
* Çatalağıl Inn
The old inn within the Çatalağıl Village, has a north-south direction rectangular plan. Presently ruined and replaced by a poultry farm.
Hagios (Saint) Ioannes Theologos (Çatalağıl) Church
The Hagios (Saint) Ioannes Theologos Church, the ruins of which were found in Çatalağıl Village, was constructed in the mid 19th Century. It’s stated to be built on behalf of John the Baptist. The walls of the Basilica plan church was laid by rubble stone and ingathering materials, was covered by a wooden roof. Presently utilized as a depot.
15. An Old Village On Uluabat Shore: Fadıllı
Meaning ‘virtuous’ in Arabic, Fadıllı is west of Bursa, 32 kilometers far from the city center. As it was established by the Yuruks who migrated from Fadıl Village of Orhaneli in the 19th Century, it was named after ‘Fadıllı’. In historical documents it is being mentioned also as ‘Fazıllı’. The settlement area of the village is mentioned as ‘Mühle’ in historical maps. According to the 1907 and 1927 yearbooks, the village which is close to Lake Uluabat, was attached to Kirmastı (Mustafakemalpaşa). According to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hudavendigar City Yearbook there were 33 dwelling houses.
* Fadıllı Arıkaya-Fadıllı Byzantine Walls
On the southern coasts of Lake Uluabat, southwest of Fadıllı Village, on the foothills of a mountain range, between two main stone mass, a wall and basement ruins of an ancient settlement and some tiles of various periods were discovered.
16. Popular With The Cave, Ayvaköy
Housing the Ayvaini Cave, Ayvaköy is 30 kilometers from the city center, west of Lake Uluabat. Being established in the 18th Century, some ruins discovered around the village are exhibited within the Bursa Archaeological Museum. There are ancient ruins within the; Tavşancılık locality 1,5 kilometers west of the village, Göztepe locality 500 meters northwest of the village, Gerdem locality about 1 kilometer south of the village and Kızlarpınarı locality around 400 meters far from the village. Many tombs discovered within the Sandıklı and Tuzla localities demonstrate that the vicinity was a necropolis site. There are also the ruins of an abbey within the Ayazma locality nearby the village. On the window of the mosque which was lately destroyed, there is an epigraph stating that the mosque was constructed 178 years ago. Ayvaköy was a small village attached to Kirmastı (Mustafakemalpaşa) with 18 dwelling houses according to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook.
17. Train Station of Nilüfer: Balat
Being one of the first neighbors of Nilüfer, Balat is located at the end of the road separating from Geçit point on the Bursa-Mudanya motorway. The name is claimed to derive; either from the combination of ‘Bul ad’ words or from the Greek word “cottage” where king or state authorities reside.Accordign to the Kadı registers the village was a owned by İshak Şah Foundation. The farm in Balat which belong to Rüstem Paşa was sold in 1891-1892 (Islaimc calendar 1309) and the vicinity was opened to settlement. There were 20 dwelling houses according to the 1907 (Islamic calendar 1325) dated Hüdavendigar City Yearbook. Also the Koru Station over the Bursa-Mudanya railway which was decommissioned in 1953 is located in Balat Quarter. Estimated to be constructed within the 2nd Abdülhamit Period, Koru Station building and the guards building were constructed; upsetting technique, rubber stone laid, gable trapeze roof and single storey. The station building consisting of four spaces, flat ceiling is covered with timber. Also there is a historical water reservoir within the station.
Bridges of Nilüfer
* Abdal Bridge
The bridge over the Nilüfer Spring, between Acemler and Hürriyet, was constructed by a merchant named Abdal Çelebi who was a follower of Niyazi-i Mısri, the founder of Mısri branch of Halveti sect in 1666 in 3 years. The bridge was pedestrianized in 1978 and renovated. The 11 of 12 oculus of the bridge only the 6 oculus of which was opened before the restoration were opened. There are two opposite sentry points in the middle of the bridge where one is open and the other is closed.
* Nilüfer Hatun Bridge
One of the oldest building that maintained and one of the oldest bridge in Bursa is the Nilüfer Hatun Bridge, 1,5 kilometers southwest of Geçit. Commonly accepted that it was constructed by Orhan Gazi’s wife Nilüfer Hatun in the 14th Century. But it is also claimed that this Nilüfer Hatun could be the daughter of Murat The 1st. The bridge was made of cut sandstone and bricks.Previously it was formed of four lancet arch, but as the watercourse was filled, belatedly four small brick arches were added.
* Mihraplı Bridge
It is a historical bridge below the place called the straining pool (presently around Acemler of Osmangazi) on Karacabey motorway, on the course of Nilüfer Spring. Constructed by Selçuk Hatun, the daughter of Çelebi Mehmet who reigned between 1413-1421, in 1465-1466 (Islamic calendar 870). On one of the epigraphs which are currently placed in Bursa Museum, bears a 9 verses poem of Poet Cemali. The second epigraph of five verses bears: “This bridge was constructed by the order of Selçuk Hatun, the daughter of Mehmet the son of Mayezit the son of Orhan the son of Osman, the queen of the queens, bighearted. God shall maintain her chastity and virtue. Telling you that this completed in 870.”