Located in the Southeastern Turkey and standing at 7,001 ft, Mount Nemrut is one of the places that have become popular in Turkey even for those who are looking for just the 5 best places to see in Istanbul. King Antiochus I Theos of Commagene built a tomb sanctuary back in 62 BC that was surrounded by colossal statues of animals, two eagles, himself, two lions, Greek and Persian gods such as Apollo– Mithras, Zeus– Oromasdesand Heracles– Artaganes at the top of the mountain. The King is seated among the gods. The main aim for the king to have the 10 statues that measured 10 meters each was so that people would come to pray to him. The king authorized that his birthday and coronation should be held every year at the site to a point that he even appointed priests who would conduct sacrifices and make offerings. He chose the food that was to be served, the prayers that were to be recited and even the music that was to be played. Over the centuries that the statues have been there, bad weather, earthquakes and other challenges have made them to break off and pieces scattered at the top of the mountain.
For a long time, the site where the self-styled god wanted to be buried had not been discovered as this was only done back in the year 1881 and close to seventy years after the rediscovery, excavation started. The statues are very well preserved. It is by mere coincidence that a German engineer got to discover the site as he was working on a road construction. Bas reliefs, most of the broken heads as well as inscriptions and temples have been found. As you follow this link http://www.travelvenu.com/top-5-tourist-attractions-in-turkey/, you get to learn more about Antiochus, the Commagene Civilization and the Mount Nemrut Archaelogical Site as it is known today. Terraces surround a tumulus on the monumental tomb and here there lie Greco Persian statues as well as a Fire Altar at the eastern terrace and steles. Out of the three terraces, the Eastern one is considered as having been the most important of this sanctuary that is said to date back 2000 years ago.
Seeing the broken statues is not only the main reason thousands head to the summit of Mount Nemrut, but the spectacular views that it has to offer has also contributed into it being one of the Turkey best tourist attractions. Visitors get to see the surrounding mountains, the breathtaking environment and also the Ataturk Dam especially when the weather is clear. One of the most rewarding moments to visit the site is during sunrise as the sun gives the headless statues that orange hue as they face the sunrise. It is quite interesting how this can change the appearance especially between the month of April and October. Due to its cultural, historical and religious importance, Nemrut Dagi or Hierothesion as the king would call it was declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.