Giresun / Geography

The territories of Giresun city are wholly situated in the Eastern Black Sea Region (coastal and inner parts); surrounded by the cities of Trabzon and Gümüşhane in the east, Erzincan and Sivas in the south, Ordu in the west and by the Black Sea coast between the counties of Eynesil and Piraziz in the north; its surface are is 6934 km2. The population is 417.505 according to the of 2007 general census. 94.3% of the territory of the city is covered by mountains; 1.2% by uplands, 4.3% by plateaus, and just 0.2% by lowlands.

Situated on a forested land that is now mostly rendered into hazelnut gardens, Giresun descends to the ravine sandy bay (this place is now the harbor protected by two breakwaters) where a hilly peninsula formed of dark colored old basalt lavas conjoins with the land and spreads to the highlands of the peninsula. The old castle is situated on this highland on a spot overseeing the surroundings. The only island of the Eastern Black Sea, (old Aretias, now Giresun Island) is positioned in front of the peninsula and a little bit to the east. Giresun is rather the harbor of its immediate surroundings and the main hazelnut loading harbor of the Black Sea coasts. On the other hand, the presence of mountains higher than 2000 m behind Giresun has narrowed the hinterland of the city, in this regard, Giresun played the role of a seaport for its immediate surroundings. Except for hazelnut, forest products and etc, as especially land routes passing through the coastline are mainly used rather than sea routes in passenger transportation, the functionality of the harbor regressed today to a degree.


Giresun city has an uneven scenery in means of surface features and the roof of the surface features forms the Giresun Mountains that cover the region between the Black Sea coast in the north and Kelkit Çayı Valley in the south. The crest line of the Giresun Mountains which make up the part of the coast mountains between Gümüşhane and Canik mountains is closer to the Kelkit Valley than the Black Sea coast and descends here upright; the declivity is less  in the Black Sea side split by valleys. The coast has generally a hilly scenery. In the east in Gümüşhane, the mountains reach the highest point in Gavur Mountains (Babalan Mountains) at 3300 m.

We may list the high points on the Giresun Mountains as the following; Abdal Musa Tepesi of 3331 m high from the sea level is the highest point of our city which is on the Gavur Mountains located at the Giresun-Gümüşhane border. On the same line, the Gavur Dağı Peak is 3248 m, the Küçük Kor Peak is 3044 m and the Cankurtaran Peak is 3278 m. The Karagöl Peak on the Karagöl Mountains located at the juncture point of the Ordu, Giresun and Sivas borders is 3137 m, the Kırklar Peak is 3040 m, the Erimez Mountain located between Giresun and Şebinkarahisar is 2701 m, the Gök Peak in the Kümbet plateau is 2440 m, the Yörücek Peak on the Bektaş plateau is 2313 m and the Çal Mountain, the nearest mountain to the Giresun city center is 2030 m high.

There are six cirque lakes in total on the Karagöl mountains. The Aygır lake (Elmalı lake) is 2650 m high, under the highest peak of the mountain located on the north west of the mountain at a spot near to the Ordu city border. As we move towards the east, the Karagöl cirque lake, the greatest lake of the mountain, is 2760 m high, the Bağırsak lake in the valley that descends to the Aksu Village is 2710 m, the Camlı lake (Kurban Lake) in the east of Karagöl on the northwest slope of the Kırklar hill is 2750 m, the Sagrak Lake on the east slope of the Kırklar hill is 2750 m, and the Kazan Lake (Avlak lake) on the east of Sağnak lake is 2670 m high.

One third of the territories of Giresun city is covered by forests and naturally ascends from the sea level up to 1900 m, high mountain vegetation emerges at higher part. The Kelkit Plateau Base is covered by steppe.

The most important road of the Giresun city, the Giresun – Şebinkarahisar road climbs over the Giresun Mountains in Eğribel (2200 m). The southern slopes of the Giresun Mountains are splited Bağırsak Stream, which is a branch of the Kelkit Stream, and its branches.

Most of the lands of the city are covered by lava and tuff of the end of second era (cretaceous); granite (granodiorite) rocks are encountered in the higher parts of mountains, and gypsum-bearing clays belonging to the Oligocene era in the Kelkit region.

The climate is temperate and rainy in the Black Sea coasts of the city; according to the approximate of long term observations, the average temperature of coldest month in Giresun is 6 - 8 C and the hottest 22 - 6 C, the lowest and highest temperatures recorded till now are 9 - 8 C and 37 – 3 C. Rain is abundant (year average 1305 mm); no drought season. The rate of rain according to seasons is as follows:

These climate conditions observed in the coastline changes in the mountainous sections and Kelkit Basin. The slopes of the mountains facing the sea are rainier (2200 m). The winter is harsher, the snow cover lasts longer and the summer is cool. In the base of the Kelkit Valley the winter is harsh, rain rate is low. The annual rain amount of Şebinkarahisar is 568 mm.

The territory of the city in the Black Sea region is split by a web of frequent valleys. Our main rivers in these valleys and their length is as follows: Aksu 60 km, Harşıt Stream (Doğankent Stream) 50 km, Özlüce Creek (Gelevera Creek) 80 km, Pazarsuyu 80 km, Yağlıdere 70 km, Batlama Creek 40 km, and Kelkit River 65 km.

The main plateaus of our city: Kümbet, Kulakkaya, Bektaş, Paşakonağı, Tamdere, Sisdağı, Kazıkbeli, Karadoğa and Çakrak.