This multiproxy study on SE Black Sea sediments provides the first detailed reconstruction of vegetation and environmental history of Northern Anatolia between 134 and 119 ka. Here, the glacial–interglacial transition is characterized by several short-lived alternating cold and warm events preceding a meltwater pulse (~ 130.4–131.7 ka). The latter is reconstructed as a cold arid period correlated to Heinrich event 11. The initial warming is evidenced at ~ 130.4 ka by increased primary productivity in the Black Sea, disappearance of ice-rafted detritus, and spreading of oaks in Anatolia. A Younger Dryas-type event is not identifiable. The Eemian vegetation succession corresponds to the main climatic phases in Europe: i) the Quercus–Juniperus phase (128.7–126.4 ka) indicates a dry continental climate; ii) the Ostrya–Corylus–Quercus–Carpinus phase (126.4–122.9 ka) suggests warm summers, mild winters, and high year-round precipitation; iii) the Fagus–Carpinus phase (122.9–119.5 ka) indicates cooling and high precipitation; and iv) increasing Pinus at ~ 121 ka marks the onset of cooler/drier conditions. Generally, pollen reconstructions suggest altitudinal/latitudinal migrations of vegetation belts in Northern Anatolia during the Eemian caused by increased transport of moisture. The evidence for the wide distribution of Fagus around the Black Sea contrasts with the European records and is likely related to climatic and genetic factors.