By Kemal Karagoz
More than 50,000 tourists visited the historic Mount Nemrut in southeastern Turkey in the first nine months of this year, a Turkish Culture and Tourism Ministry local official said Thursday.
Mustafa Ekinci, the provincial head of the Culture and Tourism Ministry, said 52,000 tourists, including 2,000 foreigners, had visited the site.
Mount Nemrut, located in Adiyaman province’s Kahta district, has been preserved as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987.
It attracts tourists from around the world with its 50-meter high and 150-meter wide temple-tombs and deities.
Statues of Greek and Persian gods are also located on the site. A lion and an eagle statue at each end accompany the giant sculptures as guardians.
The monuments were erected on the orders of late Hellenistic King Antiochus I, during Commagene Kingdom, in the first century BC.
Some legends say the Biblical King Nimrod was buried in the mountain.
Several Islamic and Jewish traditions state Prophet Abraham confronted the evil King Nimrod and defeated him.
The site is also famous for its beautiful sunrises and sunsets.
Reporting by Kemal Karagoz; Writing by Sena GulerAnadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.