Today has been a long day with a bus journey from Antakya to Adana and stops at two sites where we were out in the sun.
This report will be mostly pictures, but I will follow up with more information in the future with many of the sites we visit on the trip.
We were driving very close to the Syrian border. We came to a checkpoint and found that we had missed our turn for the site we were going to visit. We could tell that we were near the border as there was significant military presence in the area.
Our first stop was at Tel Ta’yinat. The tel is in a bend of the Orontes river and was the home of Neo-Hittites. The main feature of the site is a temple that is very similar in size and construction as Solomon’s Temple.
If you look closely you can see the layout of the temple in the picture above.
Osmaniye is known for peanuts and several of us bought them from a nut shop.
We then went to Karatep Aslantas which is another Neo-Hittite site. Here we looked at reconstructions of the city gate areas. The remains are full of writing and this was fortunate as they were the key to unlocking the Luwian language that was spoken by the Hittites. The inscriptions are both in Phoenician and Luwian.
There was also a large statue of what the guides called a Storm God. The statue is standing on the back of two bulls.
Just to be sure, the Storm God is the one on the left side of the picture.
The site was initially know as Kastabala and Alexander the Great stopped here on his way to the Battle of Issus. The city was later re-established as a Hellenistic city by Antiochus IV.
It has been a very long day and I am really tired. We had a good meal and then went out for dessert to a baklava shop. It was wonderful.
I have been fighting with the network connections for too long now, and it is time to send this off and get some sleep.
Remember to check out my Turkey page for links to more posts.