Samsun is a city on the north coast of Turkey with a population over half a million people. It is the provincial capital of Samsun Province and a major Black Sea port. The growing city has two universities, several hospitals, shopping malls, a lot of light manufacturing industry, sports facilities and an opera.
Mustafa Kemal Atatürk began the Turkish War of Independence here in 1919.
Samsun is a long city which extends along the coast between two river deltas which jut into the Black Sea. It is located at the end of an ancient route from Cappadocia: the Amisos of antiquity lay on the headland northwest of the modern city center.
The city is growing fast: land has been reclaimed from the sea and many more apartment blocks and shopping malls are currently being built. Industry is tending to move (or be moved) east, further away from the city center and towards the airport.
To Samsun's west, lies the Kızılırmak ("Red River", the Halys of antiquity), one of the longest rivers in Anatolia and its fertile delta. To the east, lie the Yeşilırmak ("Green River", the Iris of antiquity) and its delta. The River Mert reaches the sea at the city.
Samsun has a humid subtropical climate (Köppen: Cfa), like most of the eastern Black Sea coast of Turkey.
Spring temperatures can vary by over 10 degrees from one day to the next. Summers are warm and humid, and the average maximum temperature is around 27 °C (81 °F) in August. Winters are cool and damp, and the lowest average minimum temperature is around 3 °C (37 °F) in January.
Precipitation is heaviest in late autumn and early winter. Snow sometimes occurs between the months of December and March, but never more than a few centimeters of snow falls in the city, and temperatures below the freezing point rarely last more than a couple of days.
The water temperature, as in the whole Turkish Black Sea coast, is always cool, fluctuating between 8–20 °C (46–68 °F) throughout the year.