Hot air balloons soar into sky in ancient Göbeklitepe
The first hot air balloons of the season soared into the sky on July 12 at the famed ancient site of Göbeklitepe in the southeastern province of Şanlıurfa, heralding the festive season.
The rides in Göbeklitepe, which was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in June 2018, resumed after a long break due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The visitors enjoyed the beautiful aerial view of Göbeklitepe, Harran Plain and Şanlıurfa city center when three balloons took off at the same time.
Şanlıurfa Mayor Zeynel Abidin Beyazgül told reporters they aimed to make the city the second largest hot air balloon center after Cappadocia, which is home to fabled fairy chimneys and stunning balloon rides.
“Tourists will find traces of every civilization here, see the first indigenous people, the places where the prophets lived, and taste traditional gastronomy and music related to them,” Beyazgül said.
He hopes commercial flights will begin after Eid al-Adha holiday and Şanlıurfa will become the center of tourism.