Ankara is the capital of Turkey and one of Turkey’s most diverse tourist destinations which is filled with modern and ancient history. Museum of Anatolian Civilization which is one of the most important museums to visit in Turkey is located in this city. Ankara is also a great place to take as a base if you are planning to visit Gordion and Hattusas. In this itinerary we have planned a very intense program where you can visit the modern capital of Turkey with its modern and historical sites and will be able to visit the nearby Ancient sites.
Day 1 – Take the early flight from Istanbul and arrive to Ankara. Your local guide will meet you at the Airport and you will start your day tour of Ankara. Those are the sites you will be visiting;
Museum of Anatolian Civilization – Established in 1921 with the orders of Kemal Ataturk this is one of the most important museums of Turkey. The Museum displays many pieces from Stone Age to present day. The most important finds from Hattusa and Yazilikaya are also in display here.
Ankara Castle – Ankara Castle dates back to 3000 years. Ankara Castle is an ideal place to visit to get to know the culture and history in a short time When visiting Ankara Castle where you have a chance to see Roman Theatre as well.
Rahmi Koc Museum – Within five minutes’ walk of the castle is the Rahmi Koc Museum. Rahmi M. Koç Museum is Ankara’s first industrial and transport Museum and is opened in 2005. The museum is housed in two historic caravanserais, namely Çengelhan and Safranhan, across the Ankara Citadel, very near the site of the former horse market, or At Pazarı, and the present antiques bazaar.
The Roman Bath Museum – This is one of the other tourist attractions of the city. The Museum displays the Roman Bath Complex.
Anitkabir Mausoleum of Kemal Ataturk – This is one the most important iconic locations of Turkish Republic. The site of the ancient burial mound connects the distant past with the present Turkish Republic, here literally embodied by its founder’s mortal remains. Mausoleum is used by the government to mark important days associated with the Republic of Turkey for mass rallies. Within the Mausoleum there is also a Museum of War and Independence with a large collection of Ataturk memorabilia.
Overnight in Ankara
Day 2 – After breakfast in the hotel with an early start drive to Hattusa which will take about 3 hours. Hattusa is sandwiched between Yozgat and Corum, in a part of the country which sees relatively few tourists. That’s a great shame because the ruins here are extensive and unusual. What’s more the surrounding countryside is very beautiful and the neighboring small village of Boğazkale a bite-sized taste of rural Anatolia.
After approximately 3 hours’ drive, we arrive in Yazılıkaya where we will discover the beautiful rock carvings of Hittites Gods and Goddesses. Once a place where a freshwater spring bubbled forth, it is thought to be a holy place of worship.
After lunch we drive to Boğazkale and Hattusa. The impressive city of Hattusa, now all in ruins – was once the capital of the great Hittite empire.
Our first destination is Great Temple then the city ruins including Lions Gate, King’s Gate, The Tunnel, Summer Palace and City Walls.
Drive back to Ankara and overnight
Day 3 – After breakfast in the hotel you will check out and will be heading to Polatli to visit the Ancient site of Gordion. This will be about an hour’s drive about 96 km South West of Ankara. Situated on natural route from the sea to the central Anatolian plateau, it was already settled in the Early Bronze Age and throughout the Hittite period it was evidently an important provincial town. It reached its greatest development in Phrygian times during the Dark Age following the fall of the Hittite Empire (9th and 8th c. B.C.).
The number one attraction of a sightseeing trip to Gordion is the so-called Midas Tomb which was erected at the beginning of the 7th century BC at the earliest. It was built from wood (mainly cedar) and buried in a tumulus (an earthen man-made burial mound), which measures 53 meters high and 250 meters in diameter, making it the largest of its kind in Anatolia. It towers over the flat surrounding farmland.
Other smaller mounds nearby contain tombs from the periods of 725 to 550 BC. The so-called Child's Tomb to the southeast of the museum yielded some rather special treasures, including wooden furniture, ivory reliefs, and boxwood carvings.
Gordion Museum - The small Gordion Museum, opposite the Midas Tomb, displays finds from the site, including bronze statuary, glass jewelry, and an extensive coin collection.
At the end of the tour drive back to Ankara Airport and take the afternoon flight back to Istanbul