Anatolia, which has hosted different cultures and civilizations for thousands of years thanks to its fertile lands, continues to bear these civilizations' traces. Every inch of our country is full of beauty, and there are many places to see. Southeastern Anatolia is among the regions that attract attention with its rich cultural heritage. This region, where you can explore ancient cities and breathe the scent of ancient times, is the gateway of Anatolia to Mesopotamia. Southeastern Anatolia, where excavations continue, has not been fully explored yet. The region that carries the richness of different cultures together; hosts many historical cities, places of worship, museums, caves, and archaeological sites. So how would you like to meet the historical beauties of the Southeastern Anatolia Region? Here are the historical places you must see in Southeastern Anatolia.
1. Deyrulzafaran Monastery
Deyrulzafaran Monastery, one of Mardin's important buildings, was one of the important religious centers of Assyrians until 1932. This name knows the monastery because of the saffron (zafaran) plant that grows around it and is also used in its mortar. The sanctuary is 3 kilometers from the city center.
The date of construction of the monastery, which has been in the Syriac Orthodox service for 639 years, is unknown. But its history is thought to date back to the 5th century. There is also a sun temple under the monastery. There are graves of Assyrian patriarchs in the sanctuary, one of the critical religious education centers. Deyrulzafaran Monastery is still an important spiritual center for Assyrians today.
2. Dara Ruins, Mardin
Dara Ruins, located 30 kilometers from the Nusaybin district of Mardin, is known as the Ephesus of Mesopotamia. The city, which was once the garrison city of Rome, dates back to BC. It dates back to 530-570. There is a water mill, water cistern, bridge, church, theater, armory, and ruins of an underground city in this ancient city. In addition to these, the first dam of Mesopotamia is also located in this region. When the Romans were defeated in the war between the Persians and the Romans, they left the city. The mass grave of 4000 people in the region belongs to the Roman soldiers who died in this war.
3. Hasankeyf Castle, Batman
Castle; It is located on the Tigris River banks in the district of the same name. Although it is not known precisely by whom and when the castle was built, it is thought that the Romans made it to protect from the Sassanids. The court's real name, which is very sheltered, is "Hısno Koyfa," namely Kaya Castle. The castle has served many civilizations over time.
4. Malabadi Bridge, Batman
Built by the Artukids in 1147, the bridge is located on the Diyarbakır-Batman road. The bridge, 7 kilometers away from the city center, is not open to access. With a width of 7 meters and 150 meters, Malabadi is the largest arched stone bridge in the world. Evliya Çelebi stated in his travel book that the Hagia Sophia Mosque's dome could enter under this bridge.
5. Zeugma Ancient City, Gaziantep
Zeugma was founded in the Nizip district of Antep by Seleukos I Nikator, one of the generals Alexander. The city spread over a 20 decare land; Although its founder's name initially mentioned it, its name changed to Zeugma when it came under Rome's domination. In addition to its strategic location, the city also stands out with important mosaic works and sculptures. The artifacts found here are exhibited in the Zeugma Museum located in the center of Gaziantep. The museum is also the largest mosaic museum in the world. The world-famous "Gypsy Girl" mosaic is also exhibited here.
6. Mount Nemrut, Adıyaman
The artifacts from the Commagene Kingdom found in Adıyaman are known as the 8th wonder of the world. The statues, each measuring 10 meters, were built by King Antiochus. It is thought that King Antiochus had the figures built to show his respect to the gods he and his people believed in. Among the ruins are sculptures of Greek, Moroccan, Armenian mythology, and the king's statue. This situation shows that the kingdom has a multinational structure. Nemrut Mountain has been on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1987.
7. Gobeklitepe, Sanliurfa
Göbeklitepe was discovered near Örencik Village of Şanlıurfa and caused the rewriting of history. For hundreds of years, it was thought that humans first settled down and that the belief system developed later. But this structure revealed that people had belief systems even in nomadic life. Gobeklitepe, which dates back to the Polished Stone Age, is the oldest temple in the world.
8. Ulu Mosque, Diyarbakır
After the conquest of Diyarbakır, the Grand Mosque took its present form when Martoma Church was converted into a mosque. That is the reason why some of the minarets rise in a square shape. It is known as the oldest mosque in Anatolia. The sundial made by the famous scientist Al Cezeri is also located in this mosque.