Places to Visit in Kirkuk, Iraq, Asia

Places to Visit in Kirkuk, Iraq, Asia

Kirkuk also written as Karkuk or Kerkuk is a city located in Northern Iraq, the capital of Kirkuk Governorate situated about 235 kms north of national capital Bagdad. In 2010, the ministry of culture of Iraq named Kirkuk as ‘the cultural capital of Iraq’.

Kirkuk Governorate is surrounded by Arbil Governorate in the north, Sulaymaniyah Governorate to the east and Salah ad Din Governorate towards southwest. Kirkuk City is placed between 35°28′0″ N latitude and 44°19′0″ E longitude and features a hot semi-arid climate. The important landmarks of Kirkuk include Kirkuk Citadel, Tomb of Daniel and Qishla of Kirkuk.


History of Kirkuk:

The literal meaning of Kirkuk in Aramaic and Syriac language is “Beth Garmai” means “place of bones”. Neo-Assyrian Empire ruled Kirkuk for very long time and Kirkuk also witnessed the rule of Babylonia and Media.


Culture and Cuisine in Kirkuk:

The population of Kirkuk comprises of Arabs, Assyrians, Iraqi Turkmens and Kurds. Tikriti are residing higher in majority than Hadidi in Kirkuk. The famous archeological sites of Kirkuk are Qal’at Jarmo and Yorgan Tepe and most of the Kirkuk archeological sites were destroyed during World War I.

Kirkuk is rich in its food culture famous for non vegetarian dish among the other regions of the country. The famous non vegetarian dish of Kirkuk includes Pastırma, Sujuk, Biryani, Sabich and Shawarma. Also the city houses several eminent restaurants from the different regions of the surrounding Arab countries.


Connectivity to Kirkuk:

Kirkuk has got good connectivity with its surrounding regions and the major cities of the country through road and air mode of transport. Erbil International Airport is the nearest airport to Kirkuk. Kirkuk is at the distance of 83 kms from Arbil, 150 kms from Mosul, 115 kms from Tirkit and 97 km from Sulaymaniyah. Also there are regular buses accessible at Kirkuk City to reach Bagdad, Basra and Erbil, to travel within the city taxi is the best option.


Tourist Attractions in Kirkuk:

The Kirkuk Citadel:

The Kirkuk Citadel is situated in the heart of Kirkuk City. It is said that, the citadel was constructed between 884 and 858 BCE by King Ashurnasirpal II.


The Qishla of Kirkuk:

The Qishla of Kirkuk is a historical monument located in Kirkuk. It is believed that, Qishla was constructed in the year 1863. This building is spread over an area of about 6 acres situated in the heart of Kirkuk City.


Citadel of Erbil:

Citadel of Erbil is a historical mound located in Erbil and is placed about 80 kms from Kirkuk City centre. It is one of the must visit places in Iraq and the bathing rooms and a textile museum are the prime attractions of Citadel.


Other tourist attractions near Kirkuk include:

  • Daniel’s Tomb
  • Bazari Pirehmerd
  • Franso Hariri Stadium
  • Mudhafaria Minaret
  • Qaysari Bazaars
  • Assyrian Christian Church
  • Hewler Wall
  • Sami Abdulrahman Park


Ideal time to visit Kirkuk:

Between November and May is the best time to visit Kirkuk.


Accommodation Options in Kirkuk:

Hotels located near Kirkuk are well known for their upgraded class hospitality services and the facilities available in the hotels of Kirkuk include laundry, internet connectivity, doctor on call, hot water, 24 hour electricity, fridge, cable TV, garden area, vehicle parking and the food from the different regions of the world including Iran, China, India, Africa, Italy, Japan and Australia. The prominent hotels situated near Kirkuk are:

  • Kirkuk Palace Hotel
  • Divan Erbil Hotel
  • Jabar Palace Hotel
  • DMDM Hotel
  • Mondeal Hotel
  • Sunhells Hotel
  • Noble Hotel
  • Van Royal Hotel
  • Safeer Hotel
  • Erbil Rotana Hotel

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