Culture & Travel14 December 2020
WORLD HERİTAGE SİTES İN TURKEY
Welcome to Turkey’s gateway to the world: Istanbul. We are inviting you in for an adventure of “once upon a time”, starting just like an Anatolian tale. We will get on a flying carpet (or a drone) to discover Anatolia’s world heritage in a breathtaking speed. We are going to visit 18 unmatched locations in Turkey that are listed on the World Heritage List by UNESCO. Ephesus Ancient City, Göbeklitepe, Afrodisias, Pamukkale, Selimiye Mosque… These places hosted people in different eras, their walls heard prayers, and they all inspired artists. And today, they all are accepted as a common heritage for all humanity. Our first destination is Edirne, then the Aegean and the Mediterranean, followed by the depths of Anatolia.
Selimiye Mosque (Edirne)
Edirne was one of the capitals during the Ottoman era, and Selimiye Mosque & Social Complex is the greatest monumental work in this city, known to be Mimar Sinan’s masterpiece. It’s frontal view enchants us with its four graceful minarets and technical perfection. The mosque is one of the highest achievements of the art of architecture. Turning around the mosque’s gigantic dome of 31 meters in diameters, we head South of Troy, the main character in many myths.
As one of the most famous ancient cities in the world, Troy’s history goes back almost 3 thousand years. The first thing we see in the ruins of the ancient town is the gigantic wooden horse monument symbolizing the Trojan War as told in Homer’s Iliad. As the wooden horse stands on the excavation site among the greenest fields, it somehow reminds us of the hardships the locals had to face for thousands of years, the loves they have had, and the many other events as told in legends.
Pergamon and its Multi-layered Cultural Landscapes Area is an archeological ruins site that hosted different civilizations from the Ancient Greeks to the Ottomans. Described as “the most famous and magnificent city of Little Asia” by the writer and philosopher Pilinius Secundus in the 1st Century BC, Pergamon settlement has a breathtaking view. It is hard to hide the admiration when we see the 10,000+ people ancient theater greeting the eternity on the hillside.
Ephesus Ancient City (İzmir)
Ephesus is one of the most famous ancient cities in the Anatolia. As a port that was the home of people for over 9 thousand years, Ephesus was the most crowded settlement in the region once. Flying over the people walking on the road in the middle of the town, we rise over the world’s third largest library: Celsus. We leave Ephesus behind with all its glory.
Discovered by chance by the famous photographer Ara Güler in 1958, Aphrodisias ancient city is located on a fertile valley created by the Menderes stream. Aphrodisias gained it’s rightful reputation in architecture and art of sculpture, so much so that you can see its close relationship with the art of marble processing from the sky. Named after Aphrodite, the beautiful Greek goddess of love, the town was registered on the list in 2017 together with the ancient marble quarries on the North.
Almost all of the Aegean region is a huge open-air museum. Famous for its snow-white travertines, Pamukkale’s Hierapolis is one of the most authentic sites among these. We fly over countless people taking selfies on the travertines, the natural wonders of sedimentary rocks deposited by the calcium in the water from the hot springs, we find ourselves on the Hierapolis, which is a manmade “wonder”. We move speedily among the healing hot springs of the Hierapolis, which was built in the 2nd Century BC.