Bolu is an ancient city, inhabited and used between the Hittite period 2000 BC-500 BC and later became a leading city of the Kingdom of Bithynia (279 BC - 79 BC). Bebryces, Mariandynes, Koukones, Thyns and Paphlagons were residents in antiquity.
In the ancient Roman era, as shown on its coins, Bolu was commonly called Claudiopolis after Emperor Claudius. Antinous, the posthumously deified lover of the Roman emperor Hadrian and his name is later added to that of Claudius on Bolu's coins. Emperor Theodosius II (408-450) made Bolu capital of a new province and named it Honorias in honour of his son.
Bolu was the Byzantine-controlled city of Hadrianopolis under rule and loyal to the Byzantines. It then became Boli in 1097 when it was recaptured from the Byzantines by nomadic Turks coming west. The city surrendered to Seljuk Sultanate's invading forces in 1197.
In 1325, the town Bolu was conquered by the Ottoman Empire. Though, in 1402 Candaroğlu ruled for 21 years and became the chief of Boluo, a township in Kastamonu Province with a population of 10 000 inhabitants. Then, it became an Ottoman land back again. Around 65% of Bolu's land is covered with forest, making it teeming with all sorts of trees, clean air, and natural landscapes.
Bolu, with its natural beauties such as Abant, Gölcük, Mudurnu Sülüklü Lake (Mudurnu Sülıklı Göl), Kıbrıscık Karagöl and Aladağ Beşpınarlar has been the true paradise on earth. Bolu and Mengen, two world-renowned chefs from Bolu province, have put emphasis on keeping the traditional tastes alive for their dishes. With this reputation in place, they are now able to bring their special cuisine to a wider audience.