Karatape Aslantaş ready for tourism season
The Karatepe Aslantaş Open Air Museum, located within the borders of the Kadirli district and one of the significant open-air museums in Turkey, attracts the attention of tourists with its historical artifacts dating back to the eighth century B.C. and the National Park with its unique natural beauties.
The museum, included in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Tentative List in 2020, has completed preparations for the new tourism season that started on April 1.
With the two viewing terraces set up next to the museum, the visitors will be able to see the historical artifacts better, while the ramps will make it easier for the disabled to visit the museum and the national park.
As part of the preparations, a library and cafeteria, set to be established next to the Karatepe Aslantaş Open Air Museum, will be ready soon for the new season.
The general cleaning and infrastructure work around the open-air museum and the national park have also been completed to a great extent.
Speaking to the state-run Anadolu Agency, Osmaniye Museum Director Mehmet Çavuş said the artifacts in the Karatepe Aslantaş Open Air Museum were from the late Hittite period in the eighth century B.C.
Stating that thousands of local and foreign tourists visit the museum every year, Çavuş said that the museum offering nature and history together in the same environment plays an important role in this.
Noting that 90 percent of the work carried out in the museum for the new tourism season has been completed, Çavuş said: “We have completed all kinds of preparations so that our visitors can visit the cultural fabric and the surrounding nature more easily. We have two viewing terraces built so that they can see the natural beauties better.”
“At the entrance of the museum, we made a series of arrangements for visitors to have a comfortable entrance and exit. In addition, we have also completed the infrastructure works so that disabled visitors can easily visit the museum and meet all their needs. The library café, where visitors to the museum can rest, eat and drink, will be opened very soon too,” he added.
Çavuş stated that the inclusion of the Karatepe Aslantaş Open Air Museum in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Tentative List would show its contribution to the region in the near future.
[HH] Discovered in 1939
The history of the discovery of the Karatepe-Aslantaş archaeological site dates back to 1939.
The archaeological works that have been carried out in the area since 1946 unearthed an inscription belonging to the late Hittite period ruler Asativatas, sculpture and tools used by people of that period.
The most important feature of the region was the presence of a key that allowed the reading of the Hittite hieroglyphs, which were found during the excavations and which were not fully resolved before.
Thanks to the key, while Hittite writings can now be read in the world, all of the hieroglyphic writings dating back to 2,000 B.C. in Anatolia could also be read with this key.