Insider's Guide to Ankara

Major attractions, tips and our top things to see and do.

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The capital of the Hittite Empire during the late Bronze Age, Hattusas is one of the best sites of ancient ruins in Turkey. During its heyday, it was an impressive city with spectacular structures, but now consists mostly of reconstructed foundations, walls, and rock carvings. Do not let the relatively modest sounding attractions deter you, however. Lovers of ancient history will be more impressed by the site's almost eerily enchanting atmosphere, which conveys the historic antiquity of a place long forgotten by time.

Admission to Hattusas affords fantastic up-close views of numerous ancient relics, from Buyuk Mabed (its name meaning Great Temple, one of the best preserved Hittite temples left today) to San Kale (Yellow Castle, it may have been a Phrygian fort). Wander around for the afternoon and you will see many other ancient temples, forts, castles, gates, and tunnels, which truly transport visitors back to the time of the Hittite Empire.

Practical Info

Located about 208 km (129 mi.) outside of Ankara, Hattusas is a bit of a trek, but well worth the visit.

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