Çorum is inland in the central Black Sea Region of Turkey. Çorum is primarily known for its Phrygian and Hittite archaeological sites, its thermal springs, and its native dried chick-pea snacks known nationally as leblebi.
The history of the area around the present-day city is known to go as far back as the Paleolithic ages. The town also has been home to Assyrians, the Hittites (1650-1200 BC), the Phrygians, Medes, the Persians, Macedonians, Galatians, the Romans, the Byzantines, the Seljuks, and ultimately the Ottomans in the fourteenth century.
Time has come to discover the Hittite sites… Let’s start with Alacahoyuk :
Alacahoyuk is an important archaeology site of a Neolithic and Hittite settlement.
The mound at Alacahoyuk was the center of a flourishing Hattian culture during the Early Bronze Age. The mound was a scene of settlement in a continuous sequence of development from the Chalcolithic Age, when earliest copper tools appeared alongside the use of stone tools. It has been continuously occupied ever since, until today's modern settlement in the form of a small village. The standing and distinguishing remains at Alacahöyük, however, such as the "Sphinx Gate", date from the Hittite period that followed the Hatti, from the fourteenth century BC.
Thirteen "Royal Tombs" (ca. 2350-2150 BC) in Alacahöyük contained the richly adorned dead in fetal position facing south. Many of the artifacts discovered at Alacahöyük, including magnificent Hattian gold and bronze objects found in the Royal Tombs, are housed today in the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations in Ankara.
A dam, dating from 1240 BC, was ordered by King Tudhaliya IV in the name of the goddess Hebat. According to ancient Hittite tablets, a drought struck Anatolia in 1200 BC, prompting the King to import wheat from Egypt so that his land would avoid famine. Following this, the king ordered numerous dams to be built in central Anatolia, all but one of them becoming non-functional over time. The one in Alacahöyük has survived because the water source is located inside the dam's reservoir.
This small town (basically one street of shops) is best known as the site of Hattusa and Yazılıkaya and the area attracts visitors in the summer and there are restaurants near the historical sites, and stalls selling local handicrafts. Boğazkale is the site of the ancient Hittite city of Hattusa.
Hattusa was the capital of the Hittite Empire in the late Bronze Age.
Before 2000 BC, a settlement of the apparently indigenous Hatti people was established on sites that had been occupied even earlier, and referred to the site as Hattush. The earliest traces of settlement on the site are from the sixth millennium BC. In the 19th BC, Assyrian merchants established a trading post here, setting up in their own separate quarter of the city. Business dealings required record-keeping and cuneiform writing was introduced by the Assyrians.
A carbonized layer apparent in excavations attests to the burning and ruin of the city of Hattusa around 1700 BC.
Only a generation later, a Hittite-speaking king “Hattusili” had chosen the site as his residence and capital and so marked the beginning of a non-Hattic-speaking "Hittite" state, and of a royal line of 27 Hittite Great Kings.
The city was destroyed, together with the Hittite state itself, around 1200 BC, as part of the Bronze Age collapse. The site was subsequently abandoned until 800 BC, when a modest Phrygian settlement appeared in the area.
Yazilikaya was a holy site for the Hittites, located within walking distance of the gates of the city of Hattusa. It had two main chambers formed inside a group of rock outcrops. Most impressive today are the rock-cut reliefs portraying the gods of the Hittite pantheon. Most of the rock carvings date to the reign of the Hittite kings Tudhaliya IV and Suppiluliuma II in the late 13th century BCE, when the site underwent a significant restoration.
At the end of this day full of discoveries, we return to Çorum for a well deserved sleep ! Accommodation: