Göreme, located among the “fairy chimney” rock formations, is a town in Cappadocia, a historical region of Turkey. It is in the Nevşehir Province in Central Anatolia and has a population of around 2,000 people.
Among Göreme’s historically important sites are Ortahane, Durmus Kadir, Yusuf Koc and Bezirhane churches, in addition to the richly decorated Tokali Kilise, the Apple Church, and a number of homes and pigeon houses carved straight into the rock formations in the town.
(Pictures taken in 1997)
The Topkapi Palace is a large museum in Istanbul, Turkey. In the15th century, it served as the main residence and administrativeheadquarters of the Ottoman sultans.
Construction began in 1459, ordered by Mehmed the Conqueror, six years after the conquest of Constantinople. Topkapı was originally called the “New Palace” to distinguish it from the Old Palace in Beyazıt Square. It was given the name Topkapı, meaning Cannon Gate, in the 19th century. The complex was expanded over the centuries, with major renovations after the 1509 earthquake and the 1665 fire. The palace complex consists of four main courtyards and many smaller buildings. Female members of the Sultan’s family lived in the harem, and leading state officials, including the Grand vizier, held meetings in the Imperial Council building.
After the 17thcentury, Topkapi gradually lost its importance. The sultans of thatperiod preferred to spend more time in their new palaces along theBosphorus. In 1856, Sultan Abdulmejid I decided to move the court tothe newly built Dolmabahçe Palace. Topkapi retained some of itsfunctions including the imperial treasury, library and mint.
Following the end ofthe Ottoman Empire in 1923, Topkapi was transformed into a museum bya government decree dated April 3, 1924.
Hagia Sophia, “Holy Wisdom”; is the former Greek Orthodox Christian patriarchal cathedral, later an Ottoman imperial mosque and now a museum in Istanbul, Turkey. Built in 537 AD at the beginning of the Middle Ages, it was famous in particular for its massive dome. It was the world’s largest building and an engineering marvel of its time. It is considered the epitome of Byzantine architecture and is said to have “changed the history of architecture”
Sultan Ahmet Mosque
The Sultan Ahmet Mosque is a historic mosque located in Istanbul,Turkey. A popular tourist site, the Sultan Ahmed Mosque continues tofunction as a mosque today; men still kneel in prayer on the mosque’slush red carpet after the call to prayer. The Blue Mosque, as it ispopularly known, was constructed between 1609 and 1616 during therule of Ahmed I. Its Külliye contains Ahmed’s tomb, a madrasah and ahospice. Hand-painted blue tiles adorn the mosque’s interior walls,and at night the mosque is bathed in blue as lights frame themosque’s five main domes, six minarets and eight secondary domes.Itsits next to the Hagia Sophia, another popular tourist site.
Hierapolis was an ancient city located on hot springs in classical Phrygia in southwestern Anatolia. Its ruins are adjacent to modern Pamukkale in Turkey and currently comprise an archaeological museum designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The hot springs have been used as a spa since the 2nd century BC, with many patrons retiring or dying there. The large necropolis is filled with sarcophagi, most famously that of Marcus Aurelius Ammianos, which bears a relief depicting the earliest known example of a crank and rod mechanism.
The great baths were constructed with huge stone blocks without the use of cement and consisted of various closed or open sections linked together. There are deep niches in the inner section, including the bath, library, and gymnasium.
Ephesos was an ancient Greek city on the coast of Ionia, three kilometres southwest of present-day Selçuk in İzmir Province, Turkey. It was built in the 10th century BC on the site of the former Arzawan capital by Attic and Ionian Greek colonists. During the Classical Greek era it was one of the twelve cities of the Ionian League. The city flourished after it came under the control of the Roman Republic in 129 BC.
The city was famed for the nearby Temple of Artemis (completed around 550 BC), one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Among many other monumental buildings are the Library of Celsus, and a theatre capable of holding 25,000 spectators.
Ephesos was one of the seven churches of Asia that are cited in the Book of Revelation. The Gospel of John may have been written here. The city was the site of several 5th-century Christian Councils
The city was destroyed by the Goths in 263, and although rebuilt, the city’s importance as a commercial centre declined as the harbour was slowly silted up by the Küçükmenderes River. It was partially destroyed by an earthquake in 614 AD.
The Library of Celsus was built in honour of the Roman Senator Tiberius Julius Celsus Polemaeanus, completed between circa 114–117 A.D. by Celsus’ son, Gaius Julius Aquila (consul, 110 AD). The library was “one of the most impressive buildings in the Roman Empire” and built to store 12,000 scrolls and to serve as a mausoleum for Celsus, who is buried in a crypt beneath the library in a decorated marble sarcophagus. The Library of Celsus was the “third-largest library in the ancient world” behind both Alexandria and Pergamum.]
The interior of the library was destroyed, supposedly by an earthquake in 262 A.D., (though other evidence points to a fire during a Gothic invasion in that same year) and the façade by another earthquake in the tenth or eleventh century A.D. It lay in ruins for centuries, until the façade was re-erected (anastylosis) by archaeologists between 1970 and 1978.