Kars is the capital of the province of the same name. Among the special attractions of the province are Lake Çıldır, the ruins of Ani, and the ski resort of Sarygamysh.
The fortress of Kars in accordance with the Paris Peace Treaty of 1855 was given to the Turks in exchange for Sevastopol, Balaklava, and other Crimean cities. Kars has been a historically ancient Armenian city and the capital of the Armenian Kars kingdom.
Kars, rebuilt in the mid-1850s under the leadership of British engineers, was one of the most powerful fortresses of Asian Turkey. The fortress had four groups of fortifications with a height of up to 6 meters and a thickness of up to 10 meters, with stone casemates, barracks, and gunpowder cellars.
The San Stefano Peace Treaty of 1878 secured the fortress for Russia. However, in May 1918, after the conclusion of the Brest-Litovsk Treat, the Turks reoccupied Kars.