According to the total population of the province of 2016 38 thousand 294. Birecik Barrage in the construction of the Euphrates River in the water center of a large part of the center has been flooded. The people of the district moved to Karaautlak region. The tourism potential of the former Halfeti, which is inundated, is steadily increasing. Here tourists tour the Greek Kaleye boat. When water sports are regularly held every year, the ATV safari is also organized from time to time. With the increase in the level of the water, a large part of the population has begun to live in Upper town, Argil town and Karaotlak.
One of the most grown agricultural products in the region is peanuts. In the district where Black Roses grow, tourism develops day by day. The Assyrian king III. He was named Shitamrat when he was captured by Salmanassar. The Greeks gave this name to Urima by changing it. The Assyrians used the names of Kal’a Rhomeyta and Hesna the Romay.
Halfeti is a typical greenery Ottoman province, which is situated on the east bank of the Euphrates and established in terrace system from the slopes of eastern hills to the river side (now, lake). In the Ottoman period, Halfeti was the centre of Urumgala / Rumkale district. Its fate completely changed in 2000. With the construction of the Birecik Dam, most of the city was submerged under the rising waters of the dam lake.
City centre of Halfeti offers historical Halfeti houses, narrow streets, a fabulous Euphrates view and numerous floating restaurants on the Euphrates. One of the most beautiful examples of Halfeti houses is approximately 130-year old Kanneci Konağı which currently provides service as a boutique hotel. This house belongs to world renowned guitar virtuoso Ahmet Kanneci and his family. Another good example of Halfeti houses is Bey Konağı. The view of the west façade of this structure is the Euphrates. This two-storey konak (mansion), which is 150 m away from Centre Mosque, is currently deserted. According to its script, it was constructed by a Bekir Bey between 1910 and 1912.
Boat Trip in the Euphrates
One of the must-do’s in Halfeti is boat trip. During these boat trips, you can visit Çekem neighbourhood on the south, and Rumkale and sunken village Savaşan among canyons of the Euphrates that are full of natural life and history, on the north. These trips last around an hour. Various boats moored in Halfeti Marina are providing this service.
The most impressive aspect of Rumkale is its perfect location. It is situated on the slope which connects Merzimen Stream with the Euphrates, like an eagle’s nest. Rumkale, which has a triangular shape, is surrounded with bluffs on two sides. These bluffs were not regarded as sufficient and high walls were built upon them. On the third side connected to the land, there is a huge ditch of 120m x 230m.
This is the village where half of the mosque’s minaret is submerged under waters, and this image is widely used in advertisements of Rumkale. Since its road has been completely under the dam lake, you can only access the village by boats. Therefore, the village has been abandoned. Houses on the banks of the dam lake are being used as tea gardens by tourists making boat trips. You can visit currently abandoned houses which were built by cut stones. On the opposite bank of the village, there is a cave church and a tea garden in front of it.
It is a church which might be interesting especially for photographers. It is situated in Gürkuyu (Norhut) village of Halfeti. This church built in a basilica style with 3 naves dates from the 5th century Byzantine period. A major part of the church still survives.