AKSARAY MUSEUM (ZİNCİRİYE SCHOOL) AND RELATED RUINS
The museum is located in Zincirli District of Aksaray. It was built in 1969 in "Zinciriye Madras", which was established by the Kahramanoğulları Government in the 14th century and its activities continued in the same building.
Zinciriye Madras [Islamic school of law and theology] is made of stone and brick in terms of its plan. It has an open courtyard, four vaulted recesses and a pavilion. The entrance is from the Crown Door at the east. There are eight rooms covered with cupolas and a vault. The building served as a school until the beginning of the 20th century, and was used as a prison from 1940. It has been serving as a museum since 1969.
There have been 6134 monuments in the museum since 1997 obtained by means of purchase, donation and archaeological diggings carried out within the borders of Aksaray.
Archaeological Old Monument Section
There are 2022 archaeological artefacts in total.
The Artefacts of the Neolithic Age
Aşıklı Tumulus: 367 artefacts in total have been obtained as a result of the diggings for the museum. These artefacts include stone axes, human figurine bone sticks, belt clasps, spatulas and barbs made of obsidian and bull figurines made of earthenware which all belong to humans who lived more than 10.000 years ago.
Musular Region: 24 monuments have been brought to the museum as a result of the archaeological diggings carried out since 1996 in Musular, which belongs to Neolithic Age, located in Kızılkaya village of Gülağaç County of Aksaray. These artefacts include sticks, beads and dolls made of bone, stone axes and cutting tools made of obsidian.
The Artefacts of the Calcolithic Age
Güvercinkayası Region: 24 artefacts have been brought to the museum as a result of the archaeological diggings carried out since 1996 in this region, which belongs to the fifth millennium B.C., located near Mamasun Dam Lake, 1 km west of Çatalsu / Apsarı Village of Gülağaç County of Aksaray.
Among the findings of this region, which reflect the Chalcolithic Age of Central Anatolia, are cutting tools made of obsidian, vessels, rubbing and grinding stones, sticks and ornaments made of bone, animal and human figurines made of earthenware.
The Artefacts of the Assyrian Trade Colonies Period
Acemhöyük: In total, 819 artefacts have been brought to the museum as a result of the diggings carried out to date. Among the artefacts which best reflect the characteristics of the period there are rhytons, jugs made of earthenware; glazed vases; spindle whorls; stamps, seals and bulla; tools, stamps and wall-lights made of bone; stone axes; animal figurines made of faience and earthenware; objects made of rock crystal and silver ingots; small findings of gold as well as bronze needles.
There are 11 artefacts of Seljuk times and many artefacts of various times in the museum, found in the diggings made in Darphane (Melik Mahmud Gazi Hangahı).
Ethnographic Monuments Section: This section includes 584 artefacts including various clothes (such as three-layered skirts, velvet embroidered with flowers, short jackets with slit sleeves, caftans), ornaments, carpets, socks, money bags, swords and weapons collected from the environs of Aksaray.
Coin Section: There are 3528 golden, silver, bronze and copper coins belonging to Hellenistic, Rome, Byzantine, Seljuk and Ottoman Times.
The tumulus is located in Kızılkaya village 25 km south-east of Aksaray and one side of the tumulus overlooks the Melendiz River, and the other side looks upon the arable fields. It is erected on an agricultural location close to the river.
It is 13 km north-west of Aksaray. It is located in Yeşiloca County. It is an oval shaped tumulus 700m x 600m in dimension. It is one of the biggest tumuli of Anatolia, beside Aşağı Şehir. The data obtained from the archaeological diggings show that the tumulus was erected in BC 3000 and the most successful period of the tumulus was seen in the Assyrian Trade Colonies Period that is in BC 1800. In the Colony Period, Aşağı Şehir was also a large settlement area beside the tumulus. It is the centre of one of Anatolia's important kingdoms in this period. At the end of this period, both the tumulus and Aşağı Şehir were deserted. However, settlement occurred in the tumulus in the Early Hellenistic and Rome Periods. The tumulus was completely deserted at the beginning of the 3rd century A.D. 3 nomad families, who came from Hoy City of Azerbaijan / Iran in 1517, settled at the foot of the tumulus and founded today's Yeşilova.
Two palaces found in the 3rd level belonging to the Colony Period, the most successful period of the city, are not only important for Acemhöyük, but also for Anatolian architectural history. The palace at the south side of the tumulus is called Sarıkaya, and the one at the north-west is called Hatipler Palace.
Ancient Nora City
The city is within the borders of Helvadere District of Aksaray. There are ancient city ruins of Roman and Byzantine Periods at the foot of Hasan Mountain (Argaios) and on the Royal Road.
It is a 4-5 km valley within the borders of Güzelyurt County, a place of natural beauty, 50 km east of Aksaray. It has a view of "Small Ihlara" with 28 churches with rock engravings reflecting the best characteristics of the period and with underground cities.
Many churches and underground cities such as Sivişli Church, Big Church Mosque, Priest House, Kalburlu Church, and Kömürlü Church belong to our cultural and natural heritage.
It is located in the Ihlara County of Aksaray and north-east of Hasan Mountain. The Melendiz Stream, which passes through the 14 km Ihlara Valley, the older name of which is "Peristremma", and forms a canyon of 100-200m depth, first flows to Selimiye County in the north-east, then to Tuz Lake and the wide valley where Yaprakhisar and Belisırma villages and the Ziga thermal springs lie. Rather than a settlement region, Ihlara Valley is especially a religious centre.
Many closed or open churches with a Greek cross ground plan and chapel-like churches, reflecting the religious understanding of the period with their descriptions and architectures, with frescos or without frescos, with single and double naves are located on the steep slopes of the valley and combine with the waters of Melendiz Stream. In terms of its natural structure, the valley was used as a hermitage and place of worship by the Christian priests and monks since the 9th century. It was also used as a sanctuary and a hiding place during the war.
There are frescos in the churches of the valley reflecting such subjects as the Nativity, the Gospel, the Epiphany, the Exodus, and the Last Supper.