There are different historical ruins, sites and ancient cities in Turkey, the country shares a border with eight countries namely; Greece, Bulgaria, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Iran, Iraq, and Syria. The Republic of Turkey as the country is officially known as a transcontinental country in Eurasia, located mainly in Western Asia, with a smaller portion on the Balkan peninsula in Southeast Europe. Turkey is surrounded by seas on three sides, the Aegean Sea to the west, the Black Sea to the north, and the Mediterranean Sea to the south.


  • Istanbul

The largest city in Turkey is the only city in the world that sits on two continents. The Ottoman Turks captured the present-day Istanbul which was formerly known as Constantinople and before that as Byzantium in the year 1453. The city of Istanbul lies on both sides of the Bosporus channel and the Sea of Marmara, which connects the Black Sea to the Mediterranean.

Ephesus – Historical Places In Turkey
  • Ephesus

Ephesus is a Turkish city that was built in the 10th century BC and flourished under the Roman Empire. It was a commercial period during that period because of its port. The city is located in Angean Turkey and is one of the largest cities in the country. One of the seven wonders of the Ancient World, the Temple of Artemis is found here. Also, there is a massive theatre, a Celsius library which is a two-story building and the temple of Hadrian. All these provide an attraction for tourists. The ruins of this ancient cities are well preserved and attract thousands of visitors yearly.

  • Aizanoi

The city of Aizanoi is located in western Anatolia. It has many universally valuable relics and was one of the most important cities during the Roman rule. Places to visit in this city include; the museum of Kutahya, the Temple of Zeus, the Macellum and the Complex of Stadium Theatre.

Aphrodisias – Ancient Sites In Turkey
  • Aphrodisias

This city despite its very beautiful artifacts from philosophers and artists gets very little admiration and exposure which is pretty unfair. The city was formerly called The City of Sculptures due to the timeless masterpieces dating to the Roman era found there.

  • Side

This is a historic port city located on the Southern Mediterranean coast of Turkey. This city is like a resort and is known for its long beaches and classical ruins. There’s plenty to feed the eyes within Side from sightseeing to an amazing nightlife. Some of the major historical attractions in Side include; the Pamukkale bath, the Roman ruins, the Aspendos, the temple of Apollo and several others. The site also offers a visitor the opportunity to scuba dive, parasail as well as rafting and jeep safari. Surely, Side is worth visiting.

  • Aspendos/Aspendus

Aspendos was an old Greco-Roman city located in the modern-day Antalya province of Turkey. The city is located 7 kilometers (4.3 mi) northeast of central Serik. It was an old city in Pamphylia, Asia Minor, that is located about 40 km east of the modern city of Antalya, Turkey. The city was situated on the Eurymedon River some 16 km inland from the Mediterranean Sea. The city of Aspendos shared a border and was hostile to Side.

  • Perga/Perge

Perga/Perge was a historical Anatolian city in modern day Turkey. It was once the capital city of Pamphylia Secunda now in Antalya province on the southwestern Mediterranean coast of Turkey. Today, the city is a large site of ancient ruins 15 kilometers (9.3 mi) east of Antalya on the coastal plain. An acropolis that is located there dates as far back as the Bronze Age.

  • Hierapolis

Hierapolis was an ancient city that was located on hot springs in classical Phrygia in the southwestern area of Anatolia. The ruins of Hierapolis are adjacent to modern Pamukkale in Turkey and currently comprise an archaeological museum designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

  • Gobeklitepe

The ancient city of Gobeklitepe is located in Southeastern Anatolia Region of Turkey, approximately 12 km (7 mi) northeast of the city of Şanlıurfa. The area was excavated from 1996 till 2014 by a German archeological team. In 2018, it was designated a UNESCO world heritage site.

  • Hattusa

Hattusa was the capital city of the Hittite Empire during the late Bronze Age. The ruins of Hattusa lie near modern-day Boğazkale, Turkey, within the great loop of the Kızılırmak River.

Still On The Historical Sites And Ancient Cities In Turkey

  • Catalhoyuk

Catalhoyuk was a very large Neolithic and Chalcolithic proto-city settlement in southern Anatolia that existed between to 5700 BC to 7000 BC. The city flourished around 7000 BC. In the month of July 2012, it was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

  • Assos

Assos, also called Behramkale or Behram for short is a small historically rich town in the Ayvacık district of the Çanakkale Province, Turkey. The city of Assos is believed to have been founded between 1000 to 900 BC by Aeolian colonists from Lesbos, who specifically are said to have come from Methymna.

  • Troy

Troy was a city located in the far northwest of the region known in late Classical antiquity as Asia Minor. The region is now known as Anatolia in modern Turkey, near the southwest mouth of the Dardanelles strait and northwest of Mount Ida. The present-day location of Troy is known as Hisarlik. Troy was where the Trojan War described in the Greek Epic Cycle, in particular in the Iliad, one of the two epic poems attributed to Homer took place.

  • Ani

Ani is one of the ancient cities in Turkey, a ruined medieval age Armenian city that is now located in the province of Kars, close to the closed border with Armenia. Ani was the capital city of the Bagratid Armenian kingdom that covered much of present-day Armenia and Eastern Turkey between 961 and 1045. Ani was called the City of 1001 Churches and stood on various trade routes. Its many religious buildings, palaces, and fortifications were amongst the most technically and artistically advanced structures in the world during that period. At the height of the powers of this city, the population of Ani was estimated to be about 100,000.

  • Demre

Demre, a town and as well as its surrounding district in the Antalya Province on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey, is named after the river Demre. The city of Demre is the Lycian town of Myra, home of Saint Nicholas of Myra, the historical man that later developed into the figure of Santa Claus. The district of Demre was known as Kale until it was renamed in 2005.

  • Olba

Olba was an ancient city situated in the Roman province of Isauria, in present-day southern Turkey. Olba was a city of Cetis in Cilicia Aspera, that later formed part of Isauria. The city had a temple of Zeus, whose priests were once kings of the country.

  • Kibyra

Kibyra is an old city and archaeological site located in south-west Turkey, close to the modern town of Golhisar, in the Burdur Province. It was the main city of the district Cibyratis.

  • Sardis

Sardis is also of the ancient cities in Turkey, located in modern-day Sart in the Manisa Province. It served as the capital of the ancient kingdom of Lydia, one of the very important cities of the Persian Empire. It was the seat of a proconsul under the Roman Empire, and the metropolis of the province Lydia in later Roman and Byzantine time.

  • Knidos/Cnidus

Knidos is a historical Greek city of Caria and part of the Dorian Hexapolis, in south-western Asia Minor located in modern day Turkey. The city was situated on the Datça peninsula, which forms the southern side of then Sinus Ceramicus, now known as Gulf of Gökova.

  • Anazarbus

Anazarbus was an ancient Cilician city. It was situated in Anatolia region of modern Turkey, in the present Çukurova about 15 km west of the mainstream of the present Ceyhan River and near its tributary the Sempas Su.



Turkey is a historical country that is home to many ancient civilizations. Discussed here are some of the cities of old that forms part of the history of Turkey. Some of the cities have been rebuilt and renamed while others still lay as ancient ruins.

Tags: Ancient Ruins In Turkey, Historical Places In Turkey

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