Alanya Castle, which was included on the UNESCO Tentative List in 2000, welcomes around 140,000 visitors a month. The castle in the southern province of Antalya’s Alanya district was built in the Hellenistic era on an area of 10 hectares and is surrounded with six kilometers of walls. It hosted the Roman, Byzantine, Seljuk and the Ottoman civilizations for many years.
Now, the castle is one of the most popular tourist spots in the district.
Archaeological excavations have been ongoing in the castle for 30 years and are now headed by Akdeniz University Fine Arts Faculty Dean Professor Osman Eravşar.
Speaking to state-run Anadolu Agency, Eravşar said works had been carried out in the castle’s Inner Fortress (İç Kale) for 30 years. This year’s excavations have recently been finished, he said.
The professor said they had found big structures inside the castle.
“There were the remains of a small structure in this year’s work. We did not know what it was and tried to understand the structure by pursuing the remains. The remains were surrounded with a big wall. As we excavated it, we found a bath from the Seljuk era. Some walls of the bath had collapsed. We believe it had served the palace members. The wall around it continues as it is connected to the palace. There is the cooker and a water depot. Behind are washing rooms,” he said.
Eravşar said more than half of the bath was unearthed during this year’s works, adding it would be completely unearthed next year and restorations would begin.
The castle hosts hundreds of thousands of visitors every month, he said.
“Walking routes have been established in the castle over the past years. Everyone is able to visit the castle easily. The other sections need walking routes too,” said the professor.
He said the scene was as impressive as the castle itself and Seljuk Sultan Alaeddin Kayqubad I had built his palace here after he seized the castle.
“I believe this castle is one of the 10 places one should see in a lifetime,” he said.