With its inclusion in the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List last year providing a boost in promotion, Karatepe Aslantaş Open Air Museum and National Park has been preparing to host local and foreign visitors for the upcoming tourist season following the completion of two new viewing terraces and the installation of ramps for disabled people.
Karatepe Aslantaş Open Air Museum, located within the borders of the Kadirli district of southern Turkey's Osmaniye province, is one of the most significant open-air museums in Turkey with its historical artifacts dating back to the eighth century B.C.
Recent renovations at the site saw the construction of two new viewing terraces aimed at enhancing the visual experience of guests, and also ramps that should make it easier for people with disabilities to visit the museum and the national park.
Further planned additions include a library and cafeteria which will be built next to the museum.
Meanwhile, the general cleaning and infrastructure work around the Karatepe Aslantaş Open Air Museum and the National Park, have been completed for the most part.
Osmaniye Museum Director Mehmet Çavuş told Anadolu Agency (AA) that the artifacts in the Karatepe Aslantaş Open Air Museum originate from the late Hittite period of the eighth century B.C.
Stating that thousands of local and foreign tourists visit the museum yearly, Çavuş said that the open-air museum's main attraction is that it joins together natural beauty and history at the same place and time.
"We have completed all kinds of preparations so that our guests can experience our cultural fabric and wander the surrounding natural area, more easily. We have two observation terraces built so that visitors can see the natural beauties better,” Çavuş said.
“We have completed our infrastructure works so that our visitors can easily visit the museum and meet all their needs. Our library cafe, where visitors to the museum can rest and have a drink, will be opened very soon."
Çavuş stated that the inclusion of the Karatepe Aslantaş Open Air Museum in the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List was a very important development in terms of the presentation of the museum, adding that they are planning to see its contribution in the near future.
"As a result of the application we made in 2020, our museum was included in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Tentative List. Thus, photos and information about our museum were included on the official website of the UNESCO World Heritage Center,” he said.
“This year, we expect an increase in the number of foreign visitors to our museum thanks to this promotion. As the provincial directorate of culture and tourism, we have made all kinds of preparations.”
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