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Tilbeşar Castle

The Tilbeşar Castle in the village of Gündoğan, 3 kilometers southeast of Yakacık, is situated atop the Tilbaşar Tumulus which was first inhabited in the Bronze Age. It is a 5-minute climb to the top to see the ruins.

The earliest evidence of settlement on the Tilbeşar dates from the Neolithic Age, and there are some levels dating from the Chalcolithic. The height of the mound is approximately 40 m.  

The Tilbeşar Tumulus commanded important trade routes and strategic junctions during the Crusades in the 11th and 12th centuries, and a wall was built around the city that developed near the mound, and a well-fortified castle erected on the top. The castle here was mentioned in Assyrian sources, and it most probably dated from the Hittite period. The castle was captured by the Seljuks in the 12th century.

The nearby settlement called Abara was inhabited from prehistoric times and through the Classical ages. Excavations on the sides of the tumulus have revealed signs of settlement during the Early Bronze Age, Byzantine, Ayyubid period and the Crusades. Today, only some fragments of the Tilbeşar castle walls and towers remain.

Okunma 1940 defa
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The contents of this publication, which has been prepared by the 2013 Economic Development Financial Support Programme of the Silk Road Development Agency does not represent the views of the Silk Road Development Agency and/or the Ministry of Development. Sole responsibility for the content lies with Neva Bilgi Teknolojileri Medya ve Danışmanlık Hizmetleri San. Tic. Ltd. Şti.

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Carchemish Tour and Alternative

  • Kayacık Dam Reservoir

    The Kayacık Dam Reservoir is 5 km south of Tilbeşar Castle. 

    The lake is surrounded by wheat fields, and is a popular picnic area for local people. Water from the dam irrigates an area of 13,680 hectares. 

     

     

     
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  • Abara Bridge

    Travelling 2 km southwest from Karpuzatan, along wonderfully scenic, narrow roads bordered by thick trees, you will arrive in the village of Altunyurt, at the entrance to which is the Abara Bridge. 

    The trees are so dense the bridge is difficult to discern among them. The bridge is built of stone over the Sacur Stream. It has a single arch, and there is a concrete water channel on it. The arch is considerably damaged, and the bridge is no longer in use.

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  • Gaffur Baba Tomb

    The first stop on the Karkamış tour is the Orta Camii in the town of Oğuzeli. However, should you wish to stop at the shrines on the way to the town, here is a little information about them.

    The Tomb of Gaffur Baba is on top of the hill to the northwest of the road from Gaziantep to Oğuzeli. The pine tree clad hill is also known as Gaffur Baba Hill. 

    The shrine is in a natural cave, and its entrance and green dome were later additions. It contains two tombs, and areas for prayer. 

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  • Hadji Hamza Tomb

    The Hadjı Hamza Tomb is in Oğuzeli, on İsmet İnönü Boulevard in the central shopping area. It is constructed of cut stone, and has a disproportionate dome on a square base.

    The dome is topped with an alem – crescent decoration. The mausoleum has been covered with concrete. You must bend over to enter through the small door.  Nothing is known about the person entombed here.

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  • Muhammed Esad Efendi Tomb

    This tomb is also in the town, 100 m southwest of the tomb of Hadji Hamza. Buried here is Muhammed Esad Efendi, also known as Hadji Hoca, who lived from 1840-1935. He was descended from Imam Hüseyin, and was a mentor of the Halisiye branch of the Kâdiri order of dervishes.

    He was of great service to Oğuzeli, providing financial and moral support to the district during the Turkish War of Independence.

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  • Karpuzatan Recreation Area

    The Karpuzatan Recreation Area is 2 km southwest of the Orta Mosque. Surrounded by pomegranate orchards, it is a very pleasant, relaxing, natural green area with plenty of water.

    This 25 km2 area is easily accessible, and contains a swimming pool, children’s playgrounds, picnic areas, areas for washing wool, restaurant and trout farm.

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