Konya is one of the first inhabited cities in the history of mankind and still contains traces of many ancient civilisations which give it the atmosphere of a museum city. Due to its location in the middle of the barren Anatolian steppe, it used to be one of the most important trading centres on the Silk Road.
The fertile land around the city means Konya is also the heart of Turkey’s grain industry, with farming a major industry. Steeped in tradition, it is one of the most conservative and religious places in the country and best known as the adopted home of Celaleddin Rumi, the Sufic mystic who founded the Whirling Dervish sect.
Today it is still a centre of Sufic practice and teaching, and one of the highlights for visitors is the Mevlana Museum, the former lodge of the dervishes.