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Byzantine church, tombs unearthed in ancient city of Kaunos in Turkey

Byzantine church, tombs unearthed in ancient city of Kaunos in Turkey

The Byzantine church, tombs, and inscriptions were found during the excavations carried out in western Turkey’s ancient city of Kaunos that was included on the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List in 2014.

The ancient city is located in the town of Dalyan and on the right bank of the Dalyan Stream that connects Koycegiz Lake to the Mediterranean Sea.

According to UNESCO, it was the capital of the “Kaunos region” between Caria and Lycia until the beginning of the 4th BC.

In today’s context, the coastal area starting from the south plains of the Aegean resort province of Mugla and extending till the mountains between Mugla and the Mediterranean Antalya province was under the sovereignty of Kaunos that kept these borders until the 4th century BC but then lost its statue of the sovereign state after the Persian invasion.

The city was constructed on terraces — significant religious structures like Baselius Kaunios Temple, Apollon Sanctuary, and Demeter Sacred Rocks on one side and bath, theatre, and other structures including Palaestra on a large terrace called the Upper City, on the other.

Following a 10-minute journey by tour boat and walking for 15 minutes through the woods, the visitors can reach the place that opens the doors of the 3,000-year-old civilization.

The 2,400-year-old rock tombs and a 5,000-seat ancient theater welcome the visitors to the area.

Visitors walking around the basilica, bath, and agora can also examine the 1,300-year-old mosaics and take photos at the sacred Temple of Demeter.