This magnificent Artukid ruined settlement located on the banks of the Tigris and built on a rocky outcrop has remains of Seljuk, Arabic and Kurdish origins. The area was first settled by the Romans who established it as their eastern stronghold of Asia Minor, and it went on to become the Byzantine bishopric of Cephe, a citadel for the Ayyubids and then taken by the Ottomans in the 15th century.
The ruins cover 2 square kilometres of the cliff top which overhang the right bank of the Tigris River and points of interest here include the 12th century palace of the Artukid kings, a well preserved mosque and some domed tombs, the insides of the ruined houses have intricate decorative features and the Artukid bridge with its four pillars that in its time was the finest in all Anatolia. The large cylindrical onion domed building of the 15th century Zeyn El-Abdin Türbesi is believed to be the most Timurid-influenced monument in all Turkey , is made of red brick and covered in glazed turquoise tiles and is well worth a visit.
Hasankeyf Ruins and Places to VisitFor many years the ruins have been under an on-going threat from the construction of the Ilisu Dam that crosses the Tigris and if it goes ahead it will submerge the village, bridge and lower section of the site.
Getting to HasankeyfDolmuş minibuses run from Diyarbakir via Batman but the services finishes at 18:00 and Hasankeyf offers some very basic accommodation and it’s recommended to stay overnight especially for photographers for the fabulous morning and evening light effects at the site.
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