Sumela Monestary

Sumela Monastery has an eagle nest position and a superb view nearby Macka town in Trabzon County. It is on Karadag (Dark Mountain). The name of the monastery was derived either out of this Dark Mountain or Dark (or Black) Mary icon that used to be there.

It was established as a monastery complex in 4th century but there are views that there used to be a pagan shrine on the same site earlier. What you see today is partly 13th, partly 18th and 19th century’s structures. Its frescoes and location had fame always.

The monastery area became under the Ottoman rule in the reign of Mehmed the Conqueror in 15th century and this did not changed the Monastery’s religious and educational importance in the Ottoman centuries.

The monastery became a desolate place when it lost its monks and pious visitors, because of the population change between Turkey and Greece after the Independence War that followed the World War I.

It is served as a museum to Turkish and foreigner tourist in the last decades. It was restored lately by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. The monastery holds religious service with the permission of Museum authorities, which is led by the Greek Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomew I, every 15th of August that is the Dormition Day of Mother Mary. Orthodox believers from Turkey, Greece, Georgia, Russia and USA come and join this peculiar service there.

Sumela attracts everyone: Religious visitors, trekkers and people just would like to see such a beautifully green mountain with a stream at the bottom.
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