Perge and Antalya
Trip Start Aug 11, 2007
68Trip End Nov 08, 2007
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And it is a major site. And one that has had considerably archaeological attention. The site has been settled for well over 10,000 years and mention of it as a significant city is made in Hittite writing 5,000 years ago. Like most of the ruins we have visited, the Romans took the city that was there and completely renovated it, so most of the ruins date from around 100 AD
But it was another hot day, with hardly a breeze to disturb it and the dust and grit in our sandals and the sweet trickling down our faces and spines meant we didn't linger. Back in the car for some welcome aircon and shade!! We were headed back to Antayla, but our book of maps indicated that instead of retracing our route, we could continue on the road past Perge, join up with another in a short time and then get back to Antalya by a different route and maybe see a bit more of the local country side. We certainly saw more of the country side and it was pretty interesting, but we didn't find the promised road to Antalya for about an hour! The road we were on was sealed, but got narrower and narrower. We were driving though very intensively cropped land - glass house and plastic houses everywhere and in between crops of all sorts of vegetables. And reasonably profitable too by the standard of houses we saw. But still no road to Antalya, infact no other roads at all for quite sometime, and the road we were on was getting more and more local - it started to dip down in places to allow for fords of streams or irrigation canals if necessary and at one point we did have to cross one with a reasonable amount of water in it
From there we made our way to the Antalya museum, which didn't look that great from the outside, paid our money and entered. Looks were definitely deceiving - this is a large museum with an extensive and excellent collection, well set out and in the most part informatively labeled in English as well as Turkish. It shows finds from major sites in the area, dating as far back as Paleolithic, through Bronze Age and on. There are significant displays of statues and carvings from the Perge site and of sargophagi and other burial rituals form the area. And finally there are some great displays of local Turkish costumes and artifacts from everyday life from the years before the formation of the republic. This is a museum that is well wort a visit if you are in this area
By the time we had finished at the museum, it was 4pm - too late for any further exploration of the city
Back at the hotel, we had enough stories to keep our dinner companions - a really nice couple, Martin and Deb, from north Wales - entertained for most of the night!