Local Turkey

Mergabutan Ski Center renovated by Eastern Anatolia Development Agency to become touristic attraction

Renovated and developed with the support of the Eastern Anatolia Development Agency, the Mergabutan Ski Center becomes a sportive and touristic attraction center and provides career opportunities for young people from Hakkari.

Hakkari Mergabutan Ski Center has been renewed and developed with the support of the Eastern Anatolia Development Agency (DAKA), and it challenges its European rivals with 3 tracks with a total of 4 kilometers. Minister of Industry and Technology Mustafa Varank said the following about the Ski Center, “This is not the Alpine Mountains, this is Hakkari Mergabutan Ski Center. We identify and support the investments that best suit the potential of the cities.”

According to the written statement made by the Ministry, Mergabutan Plateau has been transformed into a ski center that has become a favorite of local and foreign tourists thanks to the initiatives of DAKA, the contributions of the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the Hakkari Governorate.

Located in Turkey’s southeastern tip of the plateau, the center has become a sportive and touristic attraction center with its 6-month ski season and regional development projects, while also providing the youth of Hakkari with the opportunity to pursue a career in winter sports.

Minister Varank also drew attention to the facilities of the center in his post on his Twitter account.

Varank said, “This is not the Alpine Mountains, this is Hakkari Mergabutan Ski Center! Rojbin, our successful national sportsman from Hakkari, expresses it very well: “While the young people were facing the mountain, we have brought them success.” We identify and support investments that best suit the potential of the cities.”

“Now the voices of young skiers are rising in the mountains of Hakkari”

Speaking in the statement, DAKA Secretary General Halil Ibrahim Guray stated that significant investments have been made in the ski center since 2013 and the center has achieved international standards.

Pointing out the importance of the center in economic, social and touristic terms, Guray said, “In the mountains of Hakkari, which has been on the agenda with many negativities in the past, the voices of young skiers are now rising. This center has become the heart of our city where social opportunities are limited.”

There’s a Turkey champion every 7 months

National Coach Rojbin Oren stated that he is also a physical education teacher and said, “The city we live in is surrounded by children with high altitude and high potential. We take children with strong fabrics, and there is a Turkey champion every 7 months. This is a very rare situation. Now there are baton sounds in the mountains of girls.”

National Skier Zana Oztunc drew attention to the center’s place in the success story and shared the following views:

“In Hakkari, despite the great difficulties, we played this sport and now the best players of the national team are from Yuksekova. If I hadn’t done this sport, maybe I wouldn’t have gone outside of Hakkari. Thanks to this sport, I traveled 42 countries. I had a house of my own. Now I am an athlete responsible for my family.”

National Athlete Orhan Oren stated that the heavy snow that fell in the region before was a torment for the people and said, “Now it has become a lot of pleasure than torment. Thanks to this facility, people have started to like winter and snow.”

“Although I can ask for appointment, I do not want to”

Yuksekova Dedeler Village School Principal Alime Tasci stated that she came to Yuksekova in 2015 and said:

“We had concerns and prejudices about these places. From the moment I arrived, my anxieties and prejudices were destroyed and I have been in Yuksekova for 6 years. Although I can ask for an appointment, I do not want to. I get comments like “Is there a ski center in Hakkari?” The answer is; yes, there is a great ski slope and ski center here. We also spend the weekends here.”

Ali Aydin, who is from Izmir but lives in Van, one of the visitors of the center, pointed out that he never thought that such a facility could exist in Hakkari or even dreamed of it, and emphasized that Hakkari is a beautiful facility that is equally good as Uludag.

Annual visitor number reaches 100 thousand

Mergabutan Ski Center, 12 kilometers away from Hakkari city center, is one of Turkey’s longest seasonal facilities. The season opens in November and continues until the end of April.

In the center, there is a 1165 meter long 4-seat chairlift and a 680-meter long teleski.

In the center, where social facilities such as cafeterias and restaurants are located, the construction of a 4-star hotel with a capacity of 120 people and a sports training center is in progress.

Mergabutan has 3 different tracks with a total length of 4 kilometers, and 10 thousand students are given ski lessons every year thanks to the “A Healthy Future Will Come with Sports” project of the Ministry of Youth and Sports, as well as athletes. The center, which also hosts ski lovers from Iran and Iraq, reaches 100 thousand visitors annually.

With the support of ₺648 thousand given by DAKA in 2013, the infrastructure of the track was renewed and the ski house was built.

With the agency’s grant of ₺8 million in 2017, the length of the track was increased to 4 kilometers and the chairlift system was established.

The construction of the accommodation facilities, which were started by the Hakkari Provincial Special Provincial Administration in 2019, was contributed by the Ministry of Youth and Sports and DAKA with a contribution of ₺11 million.

Source: AA / Translated by Irem Yildiz

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