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10 Most Interesting Historic Sites In Turkey

Turkey, a land bathed in the Aegean sun and kissed by the turquoise waters of the Mediterranean, presents a tapestry of tourism unlike any other. It stands as a bridge between continents, a vibrant fusion of East and West where ancient empires whisper amidst modern skyscrapers, where history unfolds on sun-kissed beaches.

Old building in turkey

Turkey tourism is a symphony of history, nature, and culture, played out on a stage illuminated by the Anatolian sun. It caters to the adventurer, the sunseeker, the history buff, and the cultural explorer, offering a kaleidoscope of experiences that resonate long after the departure flight has taken off.

Journey Through Time: A Historical Tour of Turkey

Turkey, a land where ancient empires whispered secrets to the wind and civilizations etched their stories in stone, beckons travellers with a symphony of historical wonders. Prepare to embark on a journey transcending time, from the awe-inspiring ruins of forgotten cities to the opulent palaces of sultans.

Skulpture rock in turkey

Mount Nemrut

Mount Nemrut is a mountain in southeastern Turkey that rises to 2,134 meters. The hill is famous for its peak, where colossal statues of gods from Greek and Iranian mythology are placed around an ancient royal tomb. Witnessing the sunrise over these statues is a spectacular experience throughout the year, and winter can be a magical time to visit if you don’t mind the cold. The main attraction of Mount Nemrut is undoubtedly the statues, with colossal heads of Zeus, Apollo, Herakles, and other deities standing on the Eastern and Western Terraces. In addition, there are several tumuli (burial mounds) and other ruins to explore. To avoid getting tired quickly, it’s best to wear comfortable shoes and attire, as there will be a lot of uphill walking involved.

Van Castle

Van Castle, also known as Van Kalesi, is a magnificent stone fortress on a steep bluff overlooking the city of Van in eastern Turkey. It is one of the world’s most notable and well-preserved examples of Urartian architecture. The castle’s immense size and remarkable fortifications showcase the creativity and engineering excellence of the Urartians. As you wander through the ruins, you can almost feel the vibrant energy of the ancient city that once thrived inside its walls. Perched on a rocky outcrop that spans approximately 1,000 meters in length and 350 meters in height, the castle provides breathtaking panoramic views of Lake Van and the neighbouring mountains. Observing the sunset from the castle walls is a truly unforgettable experience.

old huge building in a mountain
beautiful old building in turkey

Goreme Open Air Museum

The Göreme Open Air Museum is a UNESCO World Heritage Site situated in the surreal landscape of Cappadocia, Turkey. This site is a treasure trove of history and beauty, where you’ll enter a 10th-century Byzantine monastic settlement where monks once found solace and inspiration in the solitude of the “fairy chimneys” – towering cones and pinnacles sculpted by centuries of wind and volcanic ash. The museum is not just a collection of historical artefacts but a window into the soul of Cappadocia. It speaks of a unique relationship between humankind and nature, faith and artistry, and the enduring power of human imagination. So, come and walk among the fairy chimneys, listen to the whispers of the past, and let the stories of the Göreme Open Air Museum captivate you.


Nestled in the lush valleys of western Turkey, where green fields meet the blue Aegean Sea, lies the captivating ancient city of Aphrodisias. It offers a tantalizing glimpse into a world driven by passion, creativity, and intellectual curiosity. Besides its devotion to Aphrodite, Aphrodisias was also a renowned centre for sculpture and philosophy. You can explore the Aphrodisias Museum, marvelling at the intricate marble statues and sarcophagi, each a testament to the city’s artistic virtuosity. Once filled with cheers for gladiatorial games and athletic competitions, the Stadium now stands as a silent sentinel of bygone eras. You can unravel its ancient secrets, bask in the glow of its artistic prowess, and discover the enchanting melody of love and history that still resonates within its walls!

Half Round well like old building in turkey
old building in turkey

St. Nicholas Church, Myra

Nestled in the charming town of Demre, located along Turkey’s Turquoise Coast, is St. Nicholas Church – a place steeped in history and holiday magic. Although the church is no longer an active place of worship, it has been transformed into the Santa Claus Museum, which adds a whimsical charm while preserving its historical significance. Visitors can explore exhibits showcasing how Saint Nicholas’s legend evolved into the modern-day Santa Claus and discover fascinating artefacts like the sarcophagus believed to have once held his remains (now displayed in the Antalya Museum). Demre itself is a treasure trove of history and natural beauty. Stroll through the ancient city of Myra and relax on the picturesque Cleopatra Beach, where the crystal-clear waters of the Mediterranean beckon you for a refreshing dip.

Gobekli Tepe

This UNESCO World Heritage Site dates back 11,500 years, predating Stonehenge by 7,000 years and the Egyptian pyramids by 6,000 years. Imagine colossal T-shaped pillars intricately carved with wild boars, lions, and other animals rising from the earth like silent sentinels—picture circular enclosures formed by these massive stones, enclosing spaces larger than any contemporary houses. When you visit Göbekli Tepe, you’ll feel like you’ve entered a living museum. You can walk among the monumental pillars, trace the intricate carvings with your fingertips, and feel the weight of history pressing down upon you. Guided tours offer insights into the ongoing excavations and the theories surrounding the site. At the same time, self-guided exploration allows you to soak in the atmosphere and contemplate the mysteries on your own.

large old buildings in turkey
large number of small building in turkey


Kayaköy, also known as the Ghost Town of Kayaköy, is a deserted Greek village situated in the foothills of Babadağ Mountain in the Muğla Province of Turkey. The town is a fascinating yet eerie reminder of a forgotten community. Over 400 stone houses, two churches, schools, shops, and a hospital still stand abandoned, gradually deteriorating over time. As you explore the ruins, try to imagine the lives that once existed within these walls. Don’t miss the chance to visit the Panagia Theotokos Church, which has been beautifully preserved and showcases intricate frescoes and panoramic views. Kayaköy offers a unique combination of history, beauty, and melancholy charm. It’s a place where you can reflect on the past, appreciate the present, and contemplate the transience of life.


Aspendos, nestled in the Serik district of Antalya Province, Turkey, is a treasure trove of ancient wonders waiting to be unearthed. Renowned for its awe-inspiring Roman theatre, it offers a journey through time, transporting you to the heart of the Greco-Roman era. The pièce de résistance of Aspendos is undoubtedly its magnificent Roman theatre. Built in the 2nd century AD, it’s one of the best-preserved ancient theatres in the world, boasting a staggering capacity of 15,000 spectators—Marvel at the theatre’s impressive stage building, adorned with intricate reliefs and statues. Discover the Nymphaeum, a monumental fountain decorated with mythological figures and reliefs, once a source of fresh water for the city. Aspendos is more than just an archaeological site; it’s a gateway to a vibrant past.

Stadium like old building in turkey
Old building in turkey near a river

Bodrum Museum Of Underwater Archaeology

The Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archaeology, situated inside the impressive walls of Bodrum Castle, is a must-visit destination for anyone fascinated by the secrets of the deep in Turkey. You can explore the Glass Hall, where sunlight dances on glittering vessels and amphorae, or be amazed by the sunken city of Uluburun, brought to life through models and recovered treasures. Apart from the museum, Bodrum offers many other experiences that you can enjoy. You can dive into the crystal-clear waters and discover the enchanting underwater world firsthand. You can unwind on the exquisite golden beaches and bask in the warm Turkish sunshine. You can explore the vibrant Bodrum city centre, which is bustling with shops, restaurants, and nightlife. The Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archaeology is more than just a museum!

Sumela Monastery

Situated in Turkey’s Trabzon Province, Sumela Monastery is an architectural masterpiece with a history dating back to the 4th century AD. The monastery is perched on a cliff face, and its honey-coloured walls and black-painted roofs seem to defy gravity. Once you reach the monastery, you’ll be amazed by its Byzantine and Ottoman architecture blend. The significance of Sumela Monastery goes beyond its architectural beauty. The importance of Sumela Monastery extends beyond its architectural wonders. It served as a spiritual and cultural centre for centuries, a pilgrimage place for Christians and Muslims. However, as of January 2024, some parts of the monastery are under renovation and may be temporarily closed to the public. Therefore, checking the latest information before planning a visit is advisable.

old Buiding in mountain side


Turkey’s historical treasures are a captivating journey through time, from bustling bazaars to serene landscapes. With its rich history, stunning landscapes, and warm hospitality, Turkey promises an unforgettable adventure for travellers of all ages and interests. So, what are you waiting for? Start planning your historical tour of Turkey today!