Ancient marquee to be restored

Ancient marquee to be restored

IĞDIR – Anadolu Agency
Ancient marquee to be restored

AA photo

One of the rare artifacts from the Urartian era, a rock house where kings once lived in the eastern province of Iğdır’s Tuzluca district, will be restored and opened to tourism. 

Works were initiated by the Provincial Culture and Tourism Directorate for the restoration of the rock house, located in the Aşağı Aktaşlı village. When the works are completed, the structure will be opened to visitors. 
The rock house, also known as King Marquee, is believed to have been carved out of the rock. It also has rock-carved steps that lead to a room in the house. The rock house is also known as the “eagle’s nest” due to its location. 

Iğdır Provincial Culture and Tourism Director Osman Engindeniz said the rock house was formed by an emperor in the Urartian period. 

He said that the structure was a rare historical artifact, adding, “This is where the Urartian kings lived. Due to security reasons, it was formed on a high rock. Its entrance faces the south in order to benefit from the sun. There are some Urartian symbols and niches in the western part of the rock. Another characteristic of this place is that it is located on the Aras Basin. The Urartian people always settled on high hills in order to gain dominance on the Aras Basin.”

Engindeniz said the rock house dating back thousands of years was a place worth seeing in the region, and continued: 

“The entrance of this rock house is a big hall with a section for the king to sleep. Right below this section, there are stairs downward. Here we see many historical symbols left by various civilizations. It is possible to see settlement ruins from 10,000 years ago here. We will make environmental arrangements and open this place to guests.” 

Overlooking the Aras Basin 

Engindeniz said the rock house established on the skirts of the Aras Mountains overlooks one of Turkey’s biggest basins and that tourists would be able to see the entire basin from the top of the house. 

A local villager named Umut Kayıtmaz said there were some legends about the rock house told by the old people of the village, and called for officials to make scientific research on the structure and reveal the truth about it.