Travel Program: Archaeological Treasures of Eastern Turkey

Archaeological Treasures of Eastern Turkey May 18 – June 3, 2013 (17 days) Led by Dr. Gil Stein, Professor of Near Eastern Archaeology; Director, Oriental Institute Dear Members and Friends of the Oriental Institute: For over seventy-five years, the Oriental Institute has been at the forefront of the study of Anatolia (modern Turkey). Starting in the 1920s we have excavated major sites in Turkey, and have continued up to the present with our two ongoing excavations at Kerkenes and Zincirli. Our archaeologists have explored virtually every major period in Turkey’s incredibly rich history- from the origins of the first Neolithic villages 10,000 years ago up through the Islamic and Ottoman periods. Scholars from the Oriental Institute played a major role in establishing the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations in Ankara. One of our most lasting contributions to Anatolian studies is the compilation of the great Chicago Hittite Dictionary. Our tour sets itself apart from other trips to Turkey by focusing on the great civilizations and monuments of central and eastern Turkey. I have conducted research in eastern Turkey for more than twenty years, and I am eager to share with you the fascination and the sheer beauty of its archaeological treasures. The tour will start in the Anatolian heartland of the Hittites and the Phrygians. You will have the opportunity to tour the Hittite capital Hattusa, and Gordion – the capital of the fabled King Midas. From there we will head east to visit some of the earliest temples ever erected on earth – the enigmatic shrines of Gobekli. We will make our way to Nemrut Dag - the 2000 year old mountaintop tomb of king Antiochus of Commagene. Heading further east, we will visit the stunningly beautiful 9th century AD church of Aledamar on an island in the middle of Lake Van, and will explore the fabled ruins of Ani, the medieval capital of Armenia. Throughout the program, you will be able to observe the contrasts-and contacts-between these ancient people, and how they made ancient Anatolia one of the great cradles of civilization. This is a very special tour to ancient cities and monuments that are off the beaten track for most visitors. Even if you have visited Turkey this program will give you new perspectives. Space is limited. I urge you to join us for this extraordinary program. Gil J. Stein Director Download the brochure for the 2013 Turkey tour For additional information about the tour, call the Oriental Institute on (773) 834-9777 or email For questions about bookings, call Archaeological Tours at (866) 740-5130 or email To join our e-mail notification list for Oriental Institute Travel Programs, please send your name and e-mail address to View last year trip photos at our Oriental Institute Facebook page