The wealth of nature and culture
Mersin enjoys all the varieties of fish and of seafood provided by the Mediterranean, and a
wide variety of agricultural products typical of the different climates existing between sea
level and higher altitudes. This rich fauna and flora bring about a magnificent cuisine.
When the cultural variety created by the continuous movement of people throughout
history, typical of all the Mediterranean area, and by maritime commerce between different
areas, is added to this richness of ingredients, the result is a cuisine rich in variety. This
cuisine changes as it goes up from the seashore towards the settlements high on the Taurus
You can find dishes of the local cuisine in Mersin and in all the surrounding touristic centres.
A variety of kebab dishes make up the basis of local cuisine.
The most common of these, called tantuni, can be found near kebab restaurants, almost at
every street corner. It consists of steaks chopped in small pieces.
As for sea food, there are the big prawns called jumbo, lahos, which is the most popularly
liked fish of the eastern Mediterranean, çipura (gilt head bream), squid, akya (leer fish),
eşkina, octopus and subye.
There are also many kinds of sweets; the most unique one is a carrot-based sweet called
cezerye; delicacy can be found almost everywhere. Künefe, which is very similar to the
sweet called kadayıf, the only difference being that it is made with unsalted fresh cheese, is
also very popular.