Anatolia is home to some of the oldest man-made architecture in the world and, as it turns out, it is also surrounded by ancient underwater treasures. Recently discovered offshore from Antalya, a new sunken treasure has just changed the historical course of maritime archaeology. The treasure was announced at a conference held at the UNESCO HQ in Paris. It dates back 3,600 years and is believed to be “the Gobeklitepe of underwater archaeology”.
As Turkish waters have served as the sea routes for many seafaring nations since ancient times, they have been deemed to be the starting point for marine archaeology in the world of science. The routes across the Black Sea, the Aegean and the South Mediterranean seas had been used over a very long period of time by both passenger vessels and explorers. Ancient Egyptian trade figures dating back to 2000 B.C. have been accepted as indicators that the Anatolian shores have played an important role in the birth and development of maritime trade. On the other hand, the excavations carried out by the Eastern Mediterranean University in 1999 in the offshore areas of Akanthou, Cyprus, proved that Anatolians proved that the inhabitants of Anatolia used the sea and travelled in small boats.. The obsidian (volcanic glass) tools found in the Akanthou excavations dating back 11,000 years and identified as belonging to the Nevsehir region, also supported the argument that trade was widely conducted along the Anatolian coast.