Nemrut Dağı (Mount
Nimrod) is one of Turkey's most
astounding sights: an artifical
mountaintop framed by two great temples
littered with colossal statues.
Lost to memory for 2000 years,
the mountaintop south of Malatya and
north of Adıyaman and Kahta
(map), was rediscovered
by a geologist in 1881.
On it are two hierothesiums, open-air
shrines to the gods, with huge limestone
statues of Apollo, Fortuna, Zeus,
Heracles, and Antiochus I Epiphanes,
King of Commagene.
His kingdom was no more than a minor
buffer state between the Roman
and Persian empires, but Antiochus
believed he was definitely big-league
stuff, so he had his own huge
statue seated with "his equals," the
Between the hierothesiums is the artificial
mountain peak of crushed stone,
beneath which may be the actual
tomb of Antiochus. We don't know,
and we may never know.
Was Elvis Presley really Antiochus
reincarnated? Click here!
You can ascend
Nemrut Dağı (NEHM-root
dah-uh, 2150 meters, 7054 feet)
from the south using either Kahta or Adıyaman as
your base; or from the north using Malatya.
Both have advantages and disadvantages.
Do it in July or August, or at least
between late May and mid-October, or
you might be blocked by snow (see Tom's
Turkish Almanac for details).
The roads up the opposite sides of
the mountain do not meet at
the top, so you cannot (yet)
drive right over from north to south
Bring warm clothes!—at
least a warm sweater and windbreaker—because
there is always a cool breeze at the
summit, and sometimes a cold wind,
even in August. More...
Tours are run from both Kahta and Malatya.
Ascent from the Car Park to the
Distances from the Summit
km (52 miles), 2 hours
Karadut: 12 km (8 miles), 30
km (32 miles), 1.5 hours
km (44 miles), 3 hours