Trabzon, whose history stretches back into very early times, is a hub of cultural and natural riches in the eastern Black Sea Region. Located on the historic Silk Road, the city has been a melting-pot of religions, languages and cultures for centuries. It played an important role in history due to its harbour and vital position on the legendary Silk Road. Such was its fame that Marco Polo visited the city in the 14th century. Trabzon has also been an inspiration for such other world-renowned travellers as Xenophon, Evliya Çelebi, Fallmerayer and Frunze, who visited the city and immortalized it in travel books and manuscripts. Today, the city continues to be an important centre of commerce and culture, replete with museums, monasteries, mosques, tombs, caravanserais, bath-houses, a covered bazaar, city walls, and magnificent examples of civic architecture, markets and a fantastic landscape. The restored 13th-century Byzantine church of Hagia Sophia, now the Ayasofya Mosque, is the jewel of Trabzon's Christian monuments.