Lower City & Temple

Central Anatolia

This vast complex, dating from the 14th century BC and destroyed around 1200 BC, is the closest archaeological site to the entrance gate and the best preserved of Hattuşa's Hittite temple ruins, but even so you'll still need plenty of imagination.

As you walk down the wide processional street, the administrative quarters of the temple are to your left. The well-worn cube of green nephrite rock here is thought to have played a significant role in the Hittite religion.

The main temple, to your right, was surrounded by storerooms thought to be three storeys high. In the early 20th century, huge clay storage jars and thousands of cuneiform tablets were found in these rooms. Look for the threshold stones at the base of some of the doorways to see the hole for the hinge-post and the arc worn by the door's movement. The temple is believed to have been a ritual altar for the deities Teshup and Hepatu; the large stone base of one of their statues remains.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Central Anatolia attractions

1. City Wall Reconstruction

0.16 MILES

As you climb out of Boğazkale to the site, an evocative reconstruction of a section of city wall comes into view allowing you a sense of what the…

2. Büyük Kale

0.33 MILES

Although most of the Büyük Kale site has been excavated, many of the older layers of development have been re-covered to protect them, so what you see…

3. Mosque

0.37 MILES

Boğazkale's small mosque is a good landmark in the village (though it's extremely difficult to get lost in Boğazkale).

4. Güney Kale

0.41 MILES

Immediately opposite Nişantaş, a path leads up to the excavated Güney Kale with a fine (fenced-off) hieroglyphics chamber with human figure reliefs.

5. Nişantaş

0.47 MILES

At Nişantaş a rock with a faintly visible Hittite inscription cut into it narrates the deeds of Suppiluliuma II (1215–1200 BC), the final Hittite king.

6. Sarı Kale

0.48 MILES

About 250m south of the lower city and temple ruins the road forks; take the right fork and follow the winding road up the hillside. On your left in the…

7. Hattuşa

0.62 MILES

In the Bronze Age, the Hittite kingdom encompassed an area that stretched west to the Aegean Sea and south into Syria with its command centre here in the…

8. Boğazkale Museum

0.63 MILES

Excellent information boards provide a thorough grounding in both Hittite history and culture while the pieces on display – all unearthed at Hattuşa –…