Adana - Anavarza
This site which was known as Caesarea or Anazarbus during the times of the Roman Empire, is 28 km to the south of the Kozan District of the Adana province. The small village built just outside the antique city walls is Dilekkaya.The city Isos, which the Roman Emperor Septimius Severus entered with Pescennius Niger and sided with Severus during the power struggle, was rewarded when the Emperor won his battle in 192 A.D. and became the sole ruler of the empire, started to enjoy its days of glory. In the period 204-205 AD Cilicia became the metropolis of the Isaura and Licaonia states. In 206 AD Anavarza, like other Cilician cities, was captured by the Sasani King Shapur. Anavarza which was destroyed by Balbinos of Isaura in the 4th century A.D became capital of Cilicia Secunda (Cilicia of the Plain) which was established during the reign of Theodosius II. The city was badly hit with an earthquake in 525, but was later restored by the Emperor Justinianus, and renamed Justiniopolis. In 561 it experienced a second earthquake disaster and in the 6th century was hit with a major plague epidemic.
Adiyaman - Nemrut
The Nemrut mountainside with the tumulus containing the tomb of King Antiochus of the Commagene Kingdom and several giant statues was inscribed to UNESCO's World Heritage List in 1987.Nemrut Mountain is also known as the highest open-air museum in the world. With its enchanting statues standing ten metres high, and meters long inscriptions and the ancient Commagene sanctuary, it is situated in the Kahta county of Adiyaman province.Nemrut Mountain was one the most majestic place of worship in ancient Anatolia. According to the inscriptions, Antiochus built a monumental tomb, a tumulus of cut stones built over the tomb, and terraces along the three edges of the tumulus.Those terraces are known as the East, West and North Terraces. On the East and West Terraces are giant statues, inscriptions and reliefs. Five statues depict the gods, and, among the deities, the figure of Antiochus.The East and West terraces have five statues of gods, set in the same order on both terraces. The statues made of stone blocks, each weighing 7-8 metric tons, sit on thrones about seven metres above the terrace floor. The heads of the statues have toppled down and are scattered on the terraces.
Antalya - Archaeological Site of Perge
Perge, the long-established city of Pamphylia region, is located 18 km east of Antalya and 2 km north of Aksu Village. The Archaeological site of Perge has been excavated systemically by Istanbul University since 1946.Perge is famous by the fact that when Saint Paul started his journeys, he visited Perge in 46 A.D. and preached his first sermon here. That's why it became an important city for the Christians during Byzantine period.The first excavations began in 1946 by the Istanbul University, and they resulted in many important discoveries. A theatre exists there, consisting of three main sections: the seating, orchestra and stage. It held 12,000 spectators, with 19 rows of seats on the lower section, 23 on the top section, and a 52-metre stage.The stadium measures 34 square metres, with 13 rows of seats on top of the vaults. The eastern and western sides have 30 vaults each and the northern side has 10. For every three vaults there is an entrance to the stadium, and the other two were used as shops.
Antalya - Aspendos
Aspendos Located in the second kilometer of the road turning to North at the 44th km. of Antalya - Alanya highway, Aspendos is famous for having the best-preserved Roman Theatre not only in Anatolia but also in the whole Mediterranean world. The city is situated over a flat hill nearby the Köprüçay (Eurymedon) River, one of the largest rivers of the region. It is called Estvediys in the ancient coins descended from the 5th century B.C. The Anatolian-origin name proves that the city had inhabitants in ancient times. Today, Aspendos, which owes its access to the Mediterranean Sea and its development to the river nearby and the fertile lands, is visited by tourists mostly for its theatre and the waterways. Other remains from the city are situated over the hill behind the theatre. The hill is accessible through a path which has been set out in recent years. With its architectural features and well-preserved structure, Aspendos Theatre is one of the most prominent examples of the Roman Era theatres today. The building which was dedicated to Gods and emperors of the era exhibits the last forms of the Roman theatre construction and architectural techniques. Although influenced by older construction traditions building the lower parts of the cavea (auditorium) against the eastern hillside of the city, the upper cavea ascending over arches, the architectural harmonization of the stage building and the auditorium, covered semi-circular auditorium side entrances (parodos), and the parallel position of the side walls to the auditorium are typical features of Roman theatre construction. The upper and the lower levels of the cavea are separated by a horizontal passageway called diazoma. The auditorium has a total of 41 rows of seat, 21 in the lower section and 20 in the upper section.
Antalya - Termessos
The ruined city of Termessos, lying 34km west of Antalya, in a rugged mountain valley, was founded by the Solymi people, from the interior of Anatolia. Among the important remains are, the 4200-seat theatre and the Roman stele that Augustus had built at the beginning of the first century AD. The Odeon and the covered meeting hall, has seating for 600 people. The five interconnecting underground cisterns were used for the storage of water and olive oil.Other important remains include the Agora, with an open western side and other sides colonnaded; the heroic memorial of Hereon on top of a 6-metre high platform. There also exists a Corinthian-style temple, the Temple of Zeus, the Lesser and Greater Temples of Artemis, the gymnasium and the watch towers. In addition to this, there are more than 1200 rock tombs.
Antalya - Patara
Patara is found on the Kalkan-Fethiye road, nearly 10 km before Kalkan, and is located at the south. The colorful ceramics in the center of the city reveal that the history of the city reaches back to 5 B.C. Besides its being the birth place of St. Nicholas, it was one of the most important seaports during the times of Alexander the Great. Three gated city walls, one of which leads to Patara, was constructed by the governor Modestus in 110 A.D. One of the most important remains is the theater which is currently buried under the crystal clear sandy beaches of Patara.
Antalya - Demre Myra
Demre was one of the most important cities of the Lycian civilisation. 25km west of Finike and 48km east of Kas, Demre was a place of settlement from the 5th century BC. The city was deserted in 9 A.D after the invasions of the Arabs. Rock tombs, theatres and the Church of St. Nicholas (said to be the original Santa Claus) are the most interesting sites in the town today.Saint Nicholas, known throughout the world as Santa Claus, was born in the ancient Lycian city of Patara, an important city on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey. Around 300 A.D., during a prosperous era for Patara, a rich wheat merchant had a son and named him Nicholas. His birth was accepted as a gift from the Heavens, the fruit of his parents' prayers and vows and a savior for the poor people. It is believed that he performed miracles even as a young man. According to one legend, Nicholas was trapped under the wreckage of an old church and he survived, while his mother was crying and calling out for him.
Antalya - Limyra
Believed to have been in existence since the 5th century, Limyra is still in existence despite a massive earthquake that struck in the mid 19th century and despite its evacuation in the 7th and 9th centuries, following Arab invasions. The city composes of three section; the acropolis, areas of settlement, and necropolis.
Antalya - Xanthos
Founded on the Xanthos river basin, Xanthos is the biggest and the most ancient city of Lycia. Having remained independent until the invasions of the Persians in 4292 B.C., Xanthos tried hard to defend against the invasions. However, upon realizing that they had been defeated, the people of Xanthos first murdered their women, then commited suicide as a whole. Afterwards, 80 families imigrating to the region, refounded the city. The re-esatblished city thenceforth strengthened its connection with the west and became an important center. However, approximately 100 years later, the city was totally destroyed by a great fire, despite it being an importan center.
Aydin - Aphrodisias
This unique ancient city was named after Aphrodite, the goddess of beauty and love. The origins of the city could be traced back to the late Neolithic ages. Following the rise of the Roman supremacy in the region during the 2nd century BC, a holy attribute had been added to the city. Aphrodisias is located 38 km south of Nazilli, in the Geyre village of the Karacasu district. Despite the devastating effect of a major earthquake in the 7th century AD that had hit the city, it is a very well-preserved ancient site. The Temple on the north side is at the centre of the city. Together with this temple, Tetrapylon, the richly decorated gate erected in the 2nd century, is among the must-see remnants of the city. Also, the Agora, the Odeon with a capacity of 8000 seats, the Bishop's Palace and the Baths make the scene in Aphrodisias spectacular. Prof. Kenan Erim, who started the first excavations in the area in 1961, is now buried in Aphrdoisias to which he remained fully devoted and had personal affection throughout his life. Today, only a quarter of the city has yet been brought to daylight.
Bodrum - Pedasa
Pedesa is four kilometres away from Bodrum, on the top of a hill covered with trees. As there is no road, you can only get there on foot. For those who are interested, this trip will give them a pleasant hike and great satisfaction. The ruins can be seen on the top of the hill, within a circle of 150 metres in diameter. The remains are generally of the walls and the inner castle. To the south and south east of this area, you can see tombs in the style of the Lelegs.
Bodrum - Telmissos
Telmissos is on the Bodrum-Turgutreis road, three kilometres past Ortakent. The site is in the village of Gürece, which is two kilometres before the turn for Gümüşlük, with the hill where the remains are to be found to the north of the main road. You can see remains of the Hellenistic period, mainly the towers of the city's walls. The historian Herodotus said that the Temple of Apollo was found here, and that it became famous for its oracles. However, no traces of the temple have survived.
Bodrum - Stratonikeia
The archaic city of Stratonikeia lies in the borders of the Eskihisar Village on Yatağan - Milas highway that is 6 - 7 km to the west of Yatağan District of Muğla.The city was established in the 3rd century B.C. The Syrian King Seleukos I, gave his wife Stratonike to his son Antiokhos. Antiokhos established a city in the name of Stratonike, who was first his step mother, and then his wife. According to Strabon, who was a traveler and a writer, the city was full of very beautiful buildings.From the coins obtained during the excavations, it is understood that Stratonikeia coins had been minted since the date of its gaining its independence from Rhodes in 167 B.C. and continued until the Gallienus period (253 - 268 AD).The acropolis of the city is at the top of a mountain in the south. This top is surrounded with a wall. Ruins of a small temple constructed for the emperor can be seen on a terrace on the noth slope of the mountain, just below the highway of today.
Burdur - Archaeological Site Of Sagalassos
The archaeological site of Sagalassos is located in southwest Turkey, near the present town of Ağlasun (Burdur province); roughly 110 km to the north of the well-known port and holiday resort of Antalya.Large-scale excavations started in 1990.Most of the buildings in Sagalassos are from Hellenistic and Roman periods and well preserved, one of them is the great theater with a capacity of 9,000 people. This is a theater built on the highest altitude in the world. The city has many tombs carved into the rocks, a library, Heroon, Bouleterion (city council), temples, baths, agoras (market place), and monumental fountains which are also intact or restored. Many marble sculptures found during the excavations, belonging to ancient gods such as Ares, Herakles, Hermes, Zeus, Athena and Poseidon, and colossal statues of the emperor Hadrian, emperor Marcus Aurelius, and Faustina as the wife of the emperor Antoninus Pius, are one of the best examples of this art in Anatolia.
Canakkale - Assos
Assos, the famous teaching center of antiquity, is 87 km south of Çanakkale, in the Ayvacık County. Aristotle, Plato's most famous student, was invited to Assos, and spent over three years living and teaching there. He married the niece of Hermeia, founded a school of philosophy and conducted his early exploratory work in zoology, biology and botany.The Acropolis of Assos (Behramkale) is 238 meters above sea level. The Temple of Athena was constructed on this site in the 6th century BC. This Doric temple is being restored to its former glory and role as guardian of the Biga Peninsula and Gulf of Edremit. Linger to see the moonlight scattered through the temple ruins, or rise early for the gently awakening dawn over the acropolis.
Cappadocia - Historical Places
Göreme, in which there are many fairy chimneys and churches, is declared as an open air museum. Tokalı Church, the Priestesses and Priests Monastery, Saint Basil Chapel, Elmalı Church, Saint Barbara Chapel, Yılanlı (Saint Onuphrius) Church, Karanlık Church, Çarıklı Church, El Nazar Church, Saklı Church, Mother Mary (Kılıçlar Kuşluk) Church, Saint Eustathios Church and the Durmuş Kadir Churches, all of which are found within its territories, are valuable places to visit.The valleys, which are composed of tuff rocks, between Göreme Valley and Aktepe, are known as Büyük and Küçük Kılıçlar. Kılıçlar Church is found in this valley, which has an impressive appearance with tunnels, fairy chimneys and curious shaped rocks.
The most stunning examples of the local landscape and the Fairy Chimneys can be seen along the route to Avanos. Many of these rock formations resemble animal (camels and rabbits can be seen frequently).
As a centre of grape and wine production, Kizilcukur, a couple of kilometres northwest of Ürgüp, contains churches cut into the strange rock formations and decorated with grape figures. The rocks are adorned by different colours, making them a spectacular sight at sunset.
Located 5km from Ürgüp, the small village of Mustafapasa has old stone houses with attractive carved facades dating back to the end of the 19th century, as well as a cluster of small churches. Once known as Sinasos, while it was a thriving Greek community before World War I, it makes an interesting trip from Ürgüp, although it is not easily accessible by public transport. Places of interest include a 19th century medrese, the Ayios Vasilios Church, and the Church of Sts Constantine and Helena. There are several small guest-houses and restaurants.
Sarıhan (Yellow Caravanserai), about 10km north of Ürgüp, was constructed by the Seljuk Sultan Alaattin Keykubat in 1217. It has a huge courtyard with an elaborate gateway, and was used for the loading of animals and as a resting place for travellers. It is also a unique example of the Seljuk-Turkish architecture. The road was re-laid and the building was restored in the late 1980s, and is now functioning as a museum and a cultural centre for the performances of whirling dervishes in the summer. There is rarely public transport to Sarıhan.
Engraved in the tuffs, these basilica-type churches were thought to have been used as hospital buildings by the Christians, and are now almost destroyed. Similar structures can also be seen in Ortahisar, such as St Peter and St Paul Churches.
Firatkan is a small complex of churches, located on the road to the Göreme Open Air Museum. They have two storeys, consisting of a dormitory, dining hall, kitchen and storerooms. The storeys are connected to each other through tunnels.
This village, 3 km southeast of the Goreme Valley, is most famous for its 50m high rock-castle, which is visible from the main road. It is possible to climb the rock, which offers stunning views of the surrounding area. This attractive farming village also exhibits the traces of the monastery lifestyle, and is a prominent cultural and commercial centre. Other places of interest in this area include the Harim Church, Sanca Church and Cambazlı Church.
About 5 km from Avanos and 1 km from Paşabağlari, Zelve was founded on the steep northern slopes of Aktepe. Consisting of three separate valleys, the ruins of Zelve is the area with the most 'fairy chimneys' - a famous sight special to Cappadocia - which here have sharp points and thick trunks. It is not known exactly when people began living in the dwellings carved into the rock, found in places like Uçhisar, Göreme, Çavuşin and Zelve. What is known is that Zelve sheltered a Christian community and became a religious centre in the 9th and 13th centuries, where, the first religious seminars for priests were held in the vicinity.
Çavuşin (Nicephorus Phocas) Church
This ancient city is found beside the Göreme-Avanos road, 2.5 km out of Göreme. The narthex of this church has fallen down. It has tunnel vaults, a high nave and 3 apses. It dates back to 964-965 A.D.
Güllüdere (St. Agathangelus) Church
This ancient city is located in the far left draw of the Güllüdere valley, about 2 km from the village of Çavuşin. It was founded at the mouth of the draw on top of a steep slope.The shape of the nave is square, with a flat ceiling, and it has a single broad apse. The apse was added in the 9th or 10th century to the main structure dating back to the 6th - 7th century. There are 2 or 3 layers of frescoes in the apse which indicates that it was painted regularly. Symbols of Gospel authors are drawn symmetrically and are sitting on the right and left of an enthroned Jesus.
In the middle of the flat ceiling is the relief of a cross in the middle of a circle surrounded with palm leaves and garlands. This sort of relief, most probably, belongs to the Iconoclastic period. The people of the area had a great love for the cross and it continued to be used as a motif after the Iconoclastic era because it symbolized the "Holy Cross" in Jerusalem.
Located 14 km northeast of Avanos, this underground city was built on the northern slopes of Mt. Idis, in an area with strata made up of volcanic granite. The extensive galleries of the city are spread out over a large area and connected to each other by tunnels. The underground cities in Kaymakli and Derinkuyu, are very narrow (5 cm) and there are long holes between the different levels of the city that were used to provide communication between the different levels of the city. The ventilation of these neatly carved out rooms was provided by these holes when the city was sealed up against enemies.The city was discovered in 1972 by the local muezzin and farmer Latif Acar, when he was trying to find out where the water disappeared, which was supposed to run towards his crops.Similar to Kaymakli and Derinkuyu, Ozkonak has a ventilation system, a water well, a winery and rolling stone doors.
Cesme - Erythrai
Çeşme is a port of the ancient city, Erythrai, which was formerly known as Cyssus in ancient times. It was an important settlement area, in the 6th century BC. The city developed its trade by establishing relations with Egypt, Cyprus and western countries. The Erythrai Ancient City, excavated in (the village of) Cesme-Ildiri, composes of a Castle, Caravanserai and many fountains from Ottoman Period, as well as other examples of civil architecture. Today, the remains of the Acropolis can be seen on top of the hill which is in the city centre.Small statuettes offered to the Temple of Athena Pallas were found during the excavations in the Acropolis. One of the most important finds is the statue of a woman belonging to Archaic Age. It is on display in the Izmir Museum of Archaeology.
Corum - Hattusas the Hittite Capital
Alacahöyük is located 45 kilometres south of Çorum and 17 kilometres northwest of the Alaca township. The Alacahöyük village is 34 kilometres away from Boğazköy and 210 kilometres away from Ankara. This tumulus, or mound, was first introduced to the world of science by W.C. Hamilton in 1835 and after that time, it became a place frequently visited by scientists who came to Central Anatolia. In 1861, G. Perrot stopped by this tumulus and discovered the plan of the square tower on the left and right of the door as well as one of the orthostats. After this study, Perrot became the first to argue that these reliefs belonged to the Hittite period.
Fethiye - Ancient Cities
Although the history of Fethiye, or with its ancient name Telmessos, which is the only center where settlement continued from its establishment on the Mediterranean shore band until today, goes back to 3,000 B.C., in accordance with some philological determinations, monuments that would verify those periods have not yet been encountered. Many earthquakes that occurred since the archaic period, and new settlement understanding, caused the disappearance of archaic period buildings as time progressed. But the graves engraved into the rocks at the south of the modern city and the sarcophaguses at different locations in the city, are evaluated as ancient ruins that reached today from the archaic period. The most famous, and the most magnificent of the rock graves is undoubtedly Amyntas grave in accordance with the inscription on the left ante wall. The theatre ruin that is discovered in the excavations carried out by the museum in recent years provides some information about the layout and organization of the city in archaic period.
Foca - Phokaia
The first natives of the Ancient Phokaia settlement in the place of today's Old Foça are the immigrants who came from the Phokis environs in Greece. Phokaia and its two ports had significantly grown and had become one of the most important harbor-cities of the ancient times. The city lost strength during the Persian rule in West Anatolia. Afterwards, although the city maintained its independent status, the damage caused by the Persians was so devastating that Phokaia never regained its original magnificence.
Izmir - Pergamon
Located 100 km from north of Izmir in the Bakırçay river basin, Bergama is one of the Turkey's oldest civilized settlements, which has been inhabited from pre-historic times through the Ionic, Roman and Byzantine civilizations. It has yielded archeological treasures whose importance is recognized world-wide.To the southwest of Bergama, Asclepion, an important health center of the ancient world, the acropolis founded on top of a steep hill (300 m) and the Temple of Serapis (Kızıl Avlu) make this area a fascinating stop for history-loving tourists. The Altar of Zeus was smuggled to Germany in 1897.
Izmir - Ephesus
The first establishment of the antique City of Ephesus within the boundaries of Selçuk district of Izmir province dates back to 6000 BC, to the Neolithic age. During the researches and excavations, settlements from the Bronze Age and Hittite period were found in the tumuluses around Ephesus (pre-historic tumulus settlements) and on the Ayasuluk Hill where the castle stands. During the Hittite period the city was named as 'Aphasas'. The harbour city Ephesus where also immigrants from Greece settled moved to the neighbourhood of the Artemis Temple in 560 BC. Ephesus which is being visited by many tourists today was founded by Lysimakhos, one of the generals of Alexander the Great in the year 300 BC. Ephesus which experienced its most glorious days during the Hellenistic and Roman Ages had a population of 200.000 as the capital and the biggest harbour city of the Asian province. Ephesus changed place during the Byzantine period again and moved to the Ayasuluk Hill in Selçuk where the antique city was originally found. Ayasuluk which was invaded by Turks in 1330 and became the centrum of Aydınoğulları started to get smaller and was given the name Selçuk after the foundation of the Turkish Republic in 1923. Today it is a touristic place with a population of 30.000 people.
Kars - Ruins of Ani
The ancient citadel of Ani is situated on the barren plains above the Arpaçay Valley which separates Turkey and Armenia. The site is surrounded by an imposing fortified city wall, currently undergoing intensive restoration. This one time prominent city used to house over 100.000 citizens in it's hey-day. Once an important station on the ancient Silk Road, serving as a trading post and caravanseray for merchants travelling with heavily laden camels between east and west, it is now a ruined ghost town. Ani quickly fell to the Mongols in the 13th century who left the city ransacked in turbulent disarray, then Tamerlane rampaged through and mercilessly destroyed what was left. When the trade routes moved further south, the once bustling metropolis lost its revenue from trade and soon the entire province died. It was again destroyed by earthquakes in the 14th century. What remains now are several Armenian built churches, a ruined Seljuk palace, a couple of mosques and
caravanserays and a cathedral. The colorful frescoes and paintings in the churches are still in fine condition although time has left its mark as well.Stepping back into the turbulent history of unspoiled Eastern Turkey is a refreshing change from the well-worn tourist track. Exploring in the remotest corners of this timeless land, a quest not for the faint-hearted, priceless treasures can be enjoyed at leisure and unforgettable memories retained for a life-time. A truly voracious adventurer can create his own footprints through the ages.
Kekova - Üçağız Village (Kekova)
Located between Kaş and Demre, it is an ancient, submerged city, 500m far from the Üçağız Village in the Mediterranean.Kekova is the name of a region of fascinating islands, bays and ancient cities. Kekova has a rarely seen attraction: along the shore of the Island, a sunken city can be observed. The geological movements of the Island caused the city on the Island to submerge, creating a strange scene with half of the city under water and half above. Teimiussa and Simena are the main Lycian settlements in the area. Kekova is the only area where the flying fish can be watched in this region.Beyond its cultural features, Kekova shows very significant geological formations: an undulated coastal line, hydrobiological features and the sheer scenic beauty of the area, which all together form a breath-taking scenery.
Kemer - Phaselis
It is found on the 58th km of Antalya - Finike road. It is also possible to reach Phaselis city by maritime lines, which are 15 km away from Kemer.Being one of the eastern coastal cities of Lycia, Phaselis is one of the commercial cities of Hellenistic Age in the 6th century B.C. It becomes a bishop center during Roman Age. The eastern port of Phasellis, composed of three ports, are still in good condition. The western port, whose front and western parts remain under sand is suitable for having a swim.Most parts of the ruins, which are on ground in Phaselis, are remains from the Roman period. A port, castle wamong these ruins have been found the remains of a port, castle walls, a temple dedicated to Zeus, King Antonius Caravella road, and also twenty lined theater ruins. The peninsula's throat part composing street is marvelous. It begins from south port and reaches to city gates.
Kemer - Chimera Yanartas
An interesting natural beauty, the mythological Yanartaş (Chimera), is located to the north of Olympus, on the upper side of the Çıralı Beach. The burning stones which are located about an hour's drive from Olympos have a mythological story behind them:A divinely handsome young man named Bellerophon used to live in Argos, Greece. Bellerophon wanted very much to possess the flying horse Pegasus. So he chased Pegasus for days and nights in vain without any success. One day, in a dream, the Gods told Bellerophon how he could gain control of the winged horse. He followed the Gods' instructions, and used a golden bridle that was given to him to tame the horse while the animal was drinking water. One day, Bellerophon accidentally killed someone. After this accident, he left Argos and found shelter with the King of Tiryns, Proteus. Soon, Proteus' queen fell in love with this handsome young man, and she told him that she wanted to sleep with him. However Bellerophon, who did not want to be disrespectful towards his host, turned down the queen's advances. In revenge, the queen told her husband that the young man had tried to seduce her by sneaking into her bed. The king grew was furious, but did not want to kill his guest himself. Instead, Proteus sent a letter to his father-in-law, the King of Lycia, asking him to kill Bellerophon.
Kemer - Olympos
Olympos is located on the Antalya-Finike road. In order to go to Olympos, it is necessary to make a turn from Ulupinar, when a sign pointing to the ruins can be seen. A narrow but beautiful road leads to the beach of Olympos. In order to get to the ruins, one must pass the creek and walk a little on a wide beach which will take you to the creek that passes across Olympos. Olympos was set up in the Hellenistic period. Coins from the city, which were printed in the second century B.C., have been found during excavations. In 100 B.C., Olympos became one of the six leading cities that had the right to vote. In the first century B.C., pirates became so fond of the city that Olympos almost became a settlement area for the pirates. In 78 B.C., the Roman commander Servilius Isaurieus drove out the pirates and added the city to Roman territory. During the Roman era, the city became very famous with the cult of the blacksmith god Vulcan (Hephaestus) in nearby Çirali, where natural gases keep a number of flames burning perpetually.
Konya - Catal Hoyuk
Çatalhöyük is 10 kilometres east of Konya's Çumra Township. The tumulus is a hill with two flat areas with different altitudes. Because of these two elevations, it is called 'çatal,' meaning fork. Çatalhöyük was first discovered by J. Mellaart in 1958. There were a number of excavations here between 1961 and 1963, as well as in 1965. The studies made on the western slope of the hill revealed 13 layers. The earliest settlement in the first layer dates back to 5500 B.C. This date was determined through the examination of style of architecture, was also proved using the Carbon-14 dating method. The first settlement was a centre that sheds light on the history of humanity with the remains of the first sacred structures (with the most important structure here perhaps being the first ever house).The best known period of urbanization in Çatalhöyük lie between layers 7 and 11. Houses with square walls were adjacent but didn't share common walls (each house had their own walls). Houses were planned separately, and one house was built next to another whenever there was a need to do so. Because of the adjacent walls of the houses, there were no streets in the city.
Kusadasi - Kolophon and Notion
Kolophon (Değirmendere) is one of the twelve Ionic cities. Although it had a strong navy and cavalry force, because of the many wars that it had been involved in, it has been ruled by the forces of Lydia, Persia, Macedonia and even by sea pirates during certain periods of time.When Kolophon was destroyed by Lysimakhos in 302 B.C., its neighbouring city, Notion (Ahmetbeyli) consequently gained importance. This city which claimed Homer's citizenship, was also famous with its Klaros Temple and the oracle centre.
Manisa - Sardis
Sardis is in the Aegean Region near Manisa and Izmir. Sardis was the capital of the famous Kingdom of Lydia, where the first coins in the world were minted. The Temple of Artemis by the Sart Stream dates back to the 4th century B.C. Sardis located at the starting point of the famous "King's Road" which extends towards the east, was an important trade center. In fact, Sardis was where metal coins were used for the first time in the world as a commercial value. The Temple of Artemis, restored gymnasium and one of the oldest and largest synagogues in Anatolia dates from the third century A.D. are the places which are most frequently visited in Sardis today. On the south side of Sardis, Mt. Boz (ancient Mt. Tmolus) is good for hiking and other mountain sports.
Mugla - Yatagan Lagina
Lagina Hekate is a holy area, located on the borders of the Turgut Area of the Yatağan District of Muğla. The Lagina ruins are reached by going 9 km by the asphalt road that splits in two. To reach Lagina, it is necessary to take the road on the right near the Thermal plant. The latest researches have shown that the region has had an uninterrupted settlement since the ancient Bronze Age (3000 BC). Seleukos kings made the Lagina holy area a religious centre. They also made the ancient Stratonikeia city, which is 11 km away, a political centre.
Pamukkale - Hierapolis
The ancient city of Hierapolis, the original site of Pamukkale, was known as the Holy City in archaeological literature because of the abundance of temples and other religious structures in the area. Although there is limited information on the origin of the city, it is known that the city was founded by Eumenes II, who named it after Bergama's mythical founder, Hiera (the wife of Telephos). It was an important centre during Roman and Byzantine periods, and was also a centre of Christianity since the 4th century.
Pamukkale - Tripolis
Tripolis is 40 km north of the Denizli City center. It is established in the east of Yenicekent Town in the Buldan District, on the slopes between the Buyuk Menderes River and the town. It is connected to both Aegean shores and to Inner Anatolia and the Mediterranean with the Buyuk Menderes plain opening towards west. The city is 30 km to its peer Laodikeia, which was established on the Curuksu Valley, 20 km to Hierapolis.
Side - Ancient Side
Side, which is 7 km away from Manavgat, is an ancient settlement center. Side, which is mentioned by historians as being founded in 1405 A.D., had been ruled by the Lydians, Persians, Alexander The Great, Antiogonous and Ptolemaioses respectively, beginning from the second half of VIth century A.D. After 215 A.D., the city, which had improved greatly under supervision of Syrian Kingdom, turned into a scientific and cultural center in the process. Having been left to the Bergama Kingdom as a result of the Apameian peace, the city later protected its independence along with the Eastern Pamphilya region. The city soon flourished, gaining tremendous wealth and prosperity with a huge commercial fleet.
Side - Seleukeia Lyrbe
To the northwest of Manavgat are the remains of the ancient city of Seleukeia, situated within the Şıhlar settlement area. The city is known to have been founded as a fortified acropolis town to be used as a final defence and protection site in the case of an attack on Side. Upon the capture of Side by pirates in the 2nd century B.C., a number of the people immigrated to Seleukeia. The bronze statue of Apollon, understood to have been built during this era, is on display in the Antalya Museum.During the Pax Romana period acropolis cities eventually lost their former importance. The first of the remains are the city walls understood to have been built between two straits. It is understood that the walls were built at a height of 9 m, and the 5 m high city gate was located in the middle. There is a rectangular agora behind the gate. In the southeastern part of the Agora, is the odeon with 6 seating benches where, in addition to music concerts, the meetings of the administrative council of the city are held. In the northwestern part of the Agora, one can see a chapel with a single apsis with polygonal external apsis walls, understood to have been built during the Byzantine era.
Zeugma - Zeugma City
Ancient Zeugma City is located in Belkis Village 10 km east from Nizip / Gaziantep, by the River Euphrates. Importance of this settlement which demonstrates an uninterrupted in habiting since prehistorical ages, is that it is one of the two points allowing the easiest passage across the River Euphrates. "Zeugma" already stands for a term like "bridge head" or "passage location". The city is an important trade center of Hellenistic Era. After the region started to be ruled by Rome, importance of the city increased upon settlement of a military garrison called IV th Legion. Artistic activities increased and a cultural development is achieved in Zeugma parallel to progress in trade volume.