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Panoramic view of Rize.
Rize is located in Turkey
Location of Rize within Turkey.
Coordinates: 41°01′N 40°31′ECoordinates: 41°01′N 40°31′E
Region Black Sea
Mayor Halil Bakırcı
Elevation 6 m (20 ft)
Time zone EET (UTC+2)
Summer (DST) EEST (UTC+3)
Postal code 53
Area code(s) (0090)+ 464
Licence plate 53
Rize is the capital city of the Turkish province with the same name in the eastern part of the Black Sea Region of Turkey, on the Black Sea coast.
The name comes from Greek ριζα (riza) or Ριζαίον (Rizaion), meaning "mountain slopes". In modern times, its name in Greek was usually Ριζούντα (Rizounta). Its Latin forms are Rhizus and Rhizaeum (which remains the name of a Catholic titular see in the province of Pontus Polemoniacus). In Ottoman period, it was called Rize (ريزه). The Georgian name is Rize (რიზე), Laz name is Rizini (რიზინი)
The first written mention of Rize is made by Arrianus in a work named Periplo (Ship's Voyage). Dated at 131-132 B.C., the work records how its author, the governor of Cappadocia, made an inspection tour of the Eastern Black Sea territories that were part of his jurisdiction, first visiting the Roman Empire's Eastern Anatolian frontier garrisons before pushing on to the Black Sea coast in the Trabzon (Trebizond) region.
View of Rize
Rize, 1910's, Ottoman era postcard
The city is built around a small bay on the Black Sea coast, on a narrow strip of flat land between the sea and the mountains behind. The coastal strip is being expanded with landfill and the city is growing up the steep hillsides away from the coast. Rize enjoys a mild, extremely wet climate, vulnerable to storms coming off the Black Sea and therefore the surrounding countryside is rich with vegetation and is attracting more and more visitors every year.
Rize is a center for processing and shipping the tea grown in the surrounding area. Tea was introduced in the region in the 1940s and 1950s, changing the region's destiny, which was desperately poor until then. The city has a tea research institute founded in 1958 and tea gardens are the main sight in the town's panoramic view. Tea and kiwifruit plants are even planted in gardens around the town. The secondary activity is fishing. Rize is linked by road with Trabzon (41 miles [66 km] west), Hopa (55 miles [88 km] east, on the Georgian border, and Erzurum (north). The nearest airport is in Trabzon.
Rize is a quiet town, a typical Turkish provincial capital with little in the way of night life or entertainment. However the border with Georgia has been open since the early 90's, the Black Sea coast road has been widened and Rize is now wealthier than in previous decades; there are more cars in the streets, higher buildings on the sea front, and some places for young people to go are opening up now. The visitors to the surrounding countryside also contribute to the economy of the town.
Rize has a borderline oceanic/humid subtropical climate (Köppen climate classification: Cfb/Cfa); like most of the eastern Black Sea coast of Turkey; with warm summers and cool winters. Snowfall is quite common between the months of December and March, snowing for a week or two, and it can be heavy once it snows. Rize and the eastern part of the Black Sea coast where it is situated has the highest precipitation in western Asia, with an annual precipitation averaging around 2,500 millimetres (100 in), with heavy rainfall year round and a maximum in late autumn (October to December). The Black Sea coast receives the greatest amount of precipitation in Turkey and is the only region of Turkey that receives high precipitation throughout the year. The water temperature like in the whole Turkish Black Sea coast is always cool and fluctuates between 8 and 20 °C (46 and 68 °F) throughout the year.
The economic structure of Rize is based primarily around its geographic location. Rize is a very mountainous city, making industrial development difficult and impractical. Given the lack of air and rail transit, most goods have to travel by truck or ship, which makes exporting and importing more difficult. Rize's primary trading partner is Trabzon, the most developed city of northeast Black Sea region. Rize's main exports are agriculturally based; tea and kiwi fruit are among its most popular commodities.
Rize University was founded in 2006. It consists of the following faculties:
Merkez Milli Piyango Egitim Kampusu - Central Milli Piyango Education Campus
Tıp Fakultesi Kampusu - Medical school Campus
Ilahiyat Kampusu - Theology Campus
Egitim Fakultesi (Cayeli/Rize) - Cayeli College of Education
Rize Meslek Yuksekokulu - Rize Vocational Higher Education School
Findiklı Meslek Yuksekokulu (Findiklı/Rize) - Findikli Vocational Higher Education School
Ardesen Meslek Yuksekokulu (Ardesen/Rize) - Ardesen Vocational Higher Education School
Pazar Meslek Yuksekokulu (Pazar/Rize) - Pazar Vocational Higher Education School
Main article: Rize Province
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan Politician and current prime minister
Mesut Yılmaz - Politician and former prime minister
Köksal Toptan Politician, Speaker of Parliament
İsmail Bilen Politician, Former General Secretary of Communist Party of Turkey (TKP)
Fahri Tatan - football player
Kazım Ayvaz - Olympic medalist and world champion in wrestling
Mehmet Akif Pirim - Olympic medalist in Greco-Roman wrestling
Temel Kotil - aeronautical engineer and CEO of Turkish Airlines
Zafer Biryol - football player
İsmail Türüt - Singer of folk music of the Black Sea region
Çaykur Rizespor, the local football team, play in the Turkish Super League and are local heroes, occasionally capable of defeating even the big Istanbul teams. They play in green and blue, reflecting the blue of the sea and the green of the tea growing on the hillsides.
Others who have never lived in Rize but come from Rize families include:
Barış Manço Turkish singer and song writer
Sezen Aksu Turkish singer and song writer, born in Izmir but originally from Pazar/Rize
Tarkan Turkish pop singer