Luwian city that three civilizations could not conquer

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Anatolia looks like a workshop that produced a series of civilizations. Interesting stories of existence are hidden in every corner of the region… When we turn the route to the northwest of Antalya this week, we witness two of those stories. The first is Termessos, the city of the Luwians, who surpassed even the Hittites with its 520-marked cuneiform. Who are these Termessians? The answer to the question is hidden in the Luwians, who touched Anatolia even before the Ancient Greeks. 4,500 years ago, they were called “Light and mysterious sea people”. They give their names to Artemis, Aphrodite and Cybele. This is one of the two cities that Alexander the Great could not capture. The Macedonian King carried his 80,000-strong army to India 2,500 years ago, but could not pass it behind the Termessos wall.

The King’s Road is downhill…

You cannot enter the city in the valley of Güllük Mountain, you have to climb 1100 meters above the Korkuteli road. The city has the steepest slope among the ancient settlements. There are benches where you can rest on the summit walk. Passing through the pine forest, our path first leads to the city walls and then to the tomb of Alexander’s commander Alketas. There are many military tombs in the valley. Fluted columns, cut stones, 3-meter blocks, temple columns and overturned column drums draw attention at every point. As you walk, you understand why the city lived independently in three different ages. Even in the Roman period, the Solymi administration, which minted its own coin and wrote its law; has always kept the city alive as a self-sufficient state. Speaking of Solymi, Mount Güllük takes its name from Solymos, one of the Anatolian gods at that time. Although the people of the city are descended from Luwian, they call themselves Solymi.

You cannot enter Termessos in the valley of Güllük Mountain, you must climb 1100 meters above Korkuteli road.

The Temple of Artemis, built during the reign of the Roman Emperor Hadrian, the Gymnasium, one floor of which has survived, the colonnaded street with its destroyed domes, the sewer network, the five interconnected cisterns, the agora, and the market square next to Termessos is a Doric architecture (the plain of the ancient period. , fluted columns and capitals without ornaments) city. The ancient theater, which overlooks the Antalya Bay, is one of the most visited places by tourists. The Antalya Bay, the summit of Solymos and the snowy Beydağları determine the theater background. As we pass the 2,350-year-old columned gallery (stoa), we see the war preparation zone of the Pisidian youth. Javelin, shot put, long jump, rapid runs, the baths immediately followed, and then the physics, mathematics, philosophy taught at the school… In the final walk, the ‘founder’s house’ sign in the city leads us to a ruined villa. There is nothing after Rome, it lives with its ruins…

Turkish neighbor to Termessos

There are two two places that can be visited in a few hours on the northern ridges of Antalya. The other is Evdir Han. The 800-year-old caravanserai, built by Seljuk Ruler Izzeddin Keykavus, is in the same region as its contemporary Kırkgöz Han. The inn, with its four main iwans, is a rare example in the Middle East… In the rectangular structure, all of the walls are cut and rubble stone, as in Termessos. Iwans on each side complete the open courtyard, which is half a football field long. In the caravanserai, where 10 different buttresses are used, especially the marble portal attracts attention with decorations unique to Seljuk. This is the only strong point of the inn. However, although it was built 2,000 years after Termessos, it could not survive. After seeing the Sultan or Kırkgöz inns, you wander around with a bit of pity. It disappoints those who come out of its portal to its courtyard with curiosity. Both historical monuments are within the borders of Döşemealtı. For Termessos, it is enough to pass the 24th kilometer of Denizli road and enter Güllük National Park. The entrance fee is 12 liras for cars and caravans, the park closes at 17.00. The entrance to Evdir Han, 18 kilometers from Antalya, is free of charge…

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Luwian city that three civilizations could not conquer

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