World Heritage

Last year, Türkiye’s 20th cultural property asset, the magnificent ancient city of Gordion in Ankara's Polatli district, was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Continuously inhabited for approximately 4,500 years, the area of Gordion, Phrygia's political and cultural capital, was also home to the legendary King Midas. According to mythology, King Midas' was afflicted with the "golden touch". His tumulus (burial mound) is considered the "third largest tumulus in the world."


In the Presence of the Immortal Leader

One of the most important landmarks in Ankara is Anıtkabir, the final resting place of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the Republic of Türkiye. Located in Anıttepe in the heart of Ankara, this stately mausoleum complex extends over 750,000 square metres. Consisting of three main sections, the Lion Road, the Ceremony Square and the Atatürk Mausoleum, Anıtkabir also houses the Atatürk and War of Independence Museum, where you can witness the development of a modern nation.


Landmark Sanctuary

The Ahi Şerefeddin Mosque in Ankara is among Türkiye’s 21st cultural heritage monuments inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List. One of five mosques designated as "World Heritage" under the title "Mediaeval Wooden Pillar and Beam Mosques of Anatolia," the Ahi Şerefeddin Mosque is among Türkiye’s oldest surviving mosques. Entering the mosque, you’ll see 24 majestic timber poles with spolia marble column capitals, signalling the harmony inherent in the rest of the structure.


Exploring the Old Town

After visiting Ahi Şerefeddin Mosque, climb the nearby Ankara Castle to enjoy panoramic views of Ankara. The castle, originally built as a garrison, is a popular tourist destination that provides views of the city as well as hosting the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations, ancient Ankara houses, mosques, and other historical landmarks. The area within the confines of Kaleiçi Neighbourhood is also worth visiting, featuring two- to three-story wooden, adobe and brick Ankara-style houses lining narrow streets. Most of these venerable structures have been converted into hotels or souvenir shops, along with cafes and restaurants presenting the city's distinctive flavours.


On the Trail of the Past

Many structures have shaped Ankara's skyline, particularly those built during the Republic's construction boom. You can take a tour of the iconic Republican buildings that now house the Ethnography Museum and the Painting and Sculpture Museum. If you only have time to visit one museum to learn about Anatolia's fascinating cultural history, consider the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations. The stunning collection of the museum, housed in two historic Ottoman buildings that have been renovated and repurposed, comprises artefacts unique to the Anatolian region that are displayed chronologically, beginning with the Palaeolithic Age. In 1997, the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations was named "Museum of the Year in Europe" and is considered one of the world's leading museums. In addition, it is an excellent place to learn about Anatolia's rich cultural history. 


Glorious Roman Heritage

Ankara also features numerous Roman-era sites, including the Julianus Column, believed to have been erected in honour of Roman Emperor Julianus' (361-363 AD) visit to Ankara. As well you can see the Roman Baths, built in the 3rd century by Roman Emperor Caracalla, the son of Septimius Severus, in the name of Asclepius, the God of Health, and the Temple of Augustus, named after the Roman Emperor. 




Cultural Oasis 

Ankara, a cultural hub, is also home to significant buildings such as the Ankara Opera House, the Presidential Symphony Orchestra (CSO Ada) and CerModern. Visit the modern CSO Ada building in the city's heart, between Ankara Castle and Anıtkabir, for a concert, or head to the CerModern in the south to experience the city's modern face.