Background Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) are considered to be one of the major contaminants of drinking water and natural water bodies. Some of the well documented polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons that are water pollutants and were considered for analysis in this study included benzo[b]fluoranthene (BbF), benzo[k]fluoranthene (BkF), benzo[a]pyrene (BaP), benzo[g,h,i]perylene (BgP), and indeno[1,2,3-c,d]pyrene (InD). This study aimed at determining the levels of concentrations of basically five polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in 57 drinking water bodies located around Samsun, Ordu, Giresun, corum, Amasya, Kastamonu and Sinop provinces. Materials and method In this study, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) method 550.1 for the determination of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in drinking by Liquid-Solid Extraction (LSE) and High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) with Coupled Ultraviolet (CD) and Fluorescence Detection (FD) was used. Sampling procedures were done according to the validated method specified by the Turkish Ministry of Enivironment and Forestry. Prior to the determination of concentrations by HPLC, PAHs contained in the samples were separated from the solid phase by Solid-Phase Extraction (SPE). All data analyses were conducted using SPSS and Excel. Results Obtained results from the investigation revealed that the average total PAH and benzo[a]pyrene (BaP) concentration levels in drinking water samples taken from the central districts of Samsun were 2.73 +/- 1.51 and 0.35 +/- 0.24 ng/L respectively. In drinking water samples taken from Ordu, Giresun, corum, Amasya, Kastamonu and Sinop, the average total PAH concentrations were found to be 5.85 +/- 3.82 ng/L, 3.79 +/- 1.27 ng/L, 1.08 +/- 0.62 ng/L, 2.42 +/- 1.04 ng/L; 1.92 +/- 0.35 ng/L and 4.07 +/- 2.33 ng/L respectively. The average (BaP) concentrations for the same named locations were determined as 0.97 +/- 0.75 ng/L; 0.55 +/- 0.29 ng/L; 0.11 +/- 0.08 ng/L; 0.35 +/- 0.10 ng/L; 0.14 +/- 0.04 ng/L; 0.39 +/- 0.23 ng/L, respectively. It is therefore evident that the values of PAH and BaP in drinking water were below the limits of 100 and 10 ng/L specified in the Regulation on Water Intended for Human Consumption. These values are below the set limits proposed by Turkish legislation and WHO. Conclusion All the results for drinking water, usable water and natural spring water were below the values specified in the Regulation on Water Intended for Human Consumption and WHO. The PAH content of the studied river waters as well were below the limits proposed by Turkish legislation and WHO.