Known for being the heart of the then-powerful Ottoman empire, Turkey has gained fame as one of the top tourist-attracting countries over the years for all the right reasons, be it its magnificent landscapes that range from the vast green spaces and gardens in Bursa to Mount Nermut which offers a special experience for hiking lovers to the fascinating beaches of the mediterranean sea and the black sea, or historical and ancient sites that still carry the remnants of the different empires that ruled over the land.
What makes the historical attractions in Turkey fascinating the most are how the stark beautiful differences they reflect, even within the same location like Hagia Sophia which was a cathedral in the Byzantine Empire Era before it was converted into a mosque in the Ottoman Empire Era before it finally became a museum and one of the top attractions of Turkey in the present day.
In this article, we will list historical sites in Turkey that we believe are a must-visit if you are going in a trip to Turkey, some of them are famous while the others might be less-known but just as fascinating nevertheless:
1. Mount Nemrut
At the height of 2134 meters, Mount Nemrut is considered the highest open museum in the entire world. The mountain houses what historians suggest to be a royal tomb of King Antiochus I Theos of Commagene; it dates back to the first century with statues surrounding it. The site has been discovered in the 19th century. The statues surrounding the tomb range between 8 and 9 meters in height
2. Butterfly Valley
Known by this name due to the numerous butterfly species it houses, the Butterfly Valley is located in Fethiye district in the southwestern corner of Turkey near its western coast. In addition to the butterflies, the valley is also home to fascinating waterfalls and forests.
The valley stretches for around 3 – 4 kilometres, it is accessible only through the waters and is considered one of the less crowded beach spots in Turkey.
With a site that overlooks thermal springs that are rich with minerals, Hierapolis is an ancient city that has been declared as a World Heritage Site. It is located in proximity to the town of Pamukkale (translated to Cotton Castle in English) which is one of the World Heritage Sites itself as well.
The town dates back to the Kingdom of Phrygia, and since its foundation, it became famously known as a medical centre due to its springs which were sought by many sick people to cure themselves.
The city was destructed twice as a result of two devastating earthquakes: once under the reign of Emperor Tiberius in AD 17 and again under the reign of Emperor Nero in AD 60; it was then rebuilt in the Roman Style.