Southeastern Turkey is an amazing region, full of archeological and cultural treasures. With just five days to spend, we can create an amazing itinerary tailored to your interests. Highlights include:
- Gobeklitepe, a stone temple built 12,000 years ago by hunter-gatherers and then gently covered 2,000 years to protect it. It’s the earliest known religious structure in the world. Who were those people? Was that the original “Garden of Eden”? (It is very close to Tigris and Euphrates, the two rivers mentioned in the Biblical story of Adam and Eve).
- Yesemek is an open-air museum remaining from Hittite times, is the world’s oldest known sculpture workshop and school, dating to 4,000 years ago. Spread out on a fairly large piece of land, you can walk among a number of half-finished pieces.
- Meet the colossal statues of kings and gods at the summit of Mt. Nemrut. This UNESCO World Heritage Site was built by the megalomaniac king, Antiochus I Ephiphanes of the Commegene Kingdom in 62 B.C.
- Walk on a 1,800 year-old Cendere Bridge, a single span structure in perfect condition. According to the inscription on its columns, it was built between 198 and 200 by the XVI Roman Legion in honor of Roman emperor Septimius Severus and his wife.
- See the most beautiful mosaic collection in the world at the Gaziantep Archeological Museum. It houses the amazing mosaics recovered from Roman villas of ancient city of Zeugma, another World Heritage Site.
- Enjoy the amazing food in Gaziantep, whose local cuisine rivals the French in both quality and variety.
- In Urfa, visit the cave said to have been the place where Abraham was born.
- Visit Harran with its unique beehive-shaped mud houses, where it is believed that Abraham’s grandson Jacob had met his future wife Rachel Rachel. Harran is believed to be one of the oldest continuously inhabited spots in the world, and is also the site of the first Islamic University in the world.
- Visit the Syriac Orthodox Christian monastery of Deyr-ul-Zaferan (Saffron Monastery). This 1,600 years old has 365 rooms, many of which echo with the sounds of Aramaic, the language Jesus spoke.