Explore The Euphrates and Tigris basin
Karkamış, the ancient Hittite city of Carchemish, 25km south of the highway, lies in a military zone right on the Syrian frontier and is off-limits at present. Many of the reliefs unearthed here by British archeologist Leonard Woolley, along with T.E. Lawrence, in the early twentieth century, can be seen in the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations in Ankara.
From Nizip, on the same highway, it’s 9km north to the waterside excavations at Hellenisitic/Roman Zeugma. The once-rich city was strategically founded on a major crossing point of the Euphrates by one of Alexander the Great’s generals. The Birecik Dam waters submerged most of the ancient villas here but an international archeological rescue mission in 2000 recovered many mosaics, now on diplay in Gaziantep. Set to become an open-air museum, the site was off-limits at the time of writing due to ongoing excavations. For the latest on both sites ask at Gaziantep’s archeological museum.