Mardin is a historic city situated on a hill in the Mesopotamia region, overlooking the surrounding plains. Its strategic location on major trade routes has led to continuous conquests and rule by various ancient civilizations, including the Hurri-Mitani, Hittites, Surs, Babylonians, Persians, Romans, Arabs, and Seljuks. During the Artuklu Kingdom's reign, their Mardin branch flourished and established many important buildings that remain today.
Visitors to the city can explore several historic sites, including the Kasimiye Medresse, Zinciriye Medresse, and Grand Mosque. Other noteworthy places in the region include the Dayrul-Zeferan Monastery, Harizm Medresse, and the Zeynel Bey Mausoleum, which is adorned with blue tiles on its exterior walls.
One of the most impressive examples of Artutid architecture is found in the Ulu Mosque, located in Kiziltepe, 12 miles southeast of Mardin.
Another fascinating discovery near Mardin is the Dara Ancient City, which was uncovered in recent excavations. Situated along the route to Nusaybin, near the Syrian border, this site is a testament to the city's rich history.
The Mor Yakup Monastery is also an important cultural site in the area. It was named after a priest, Marislium, and was later known as "Marevgan Monastery." According to legend, Marbinyamin, one of the heralds of the east, had the bones of his oldest disciple buried here. The monastery was also called "Marhonesya" at one time.