Located more than 500 miles away from the crowded streets of Istanbul, is Sanliurfa in Southeastern Turkey. There, in 1994, on a dusty hilltop, a local shepherd noticed the tip of a stone sticking out of his field. He began to dig, eventually unearthing a 19-foot pillar. Its edges were precise and rising from its center was a relief carving of a strange animal. Upon closer examination, it appeared that the finely chiseled stone had been fashioned by talented stonemasons, working with advanced tools. When word of the discovery reached the scientific community, one fact became obvious. A Kurdish shepherd had stumbled upon what is perhaps the most astonishing archaeological discovery in modern times, a site known as Gobekli Tepe.

“For 13 years, a German archaeology team has been meticulously going into a hill, and they have been doing carbon dating as deep as they go. And it has taken them 13 years to uncover only five percent of a gigantic civilization. They know what’s under the ground. Circles upon circles upon circles. Perfect circles in stone. And rising up out of those stone circles are huge, sculpted columns, 19 feet high, 15 tons per column.”

– Linda Moulton Howe
(Author / Investigative Journalist, Earthfiles)

Test results have supported the idea that Gobekli Tepe is nearly 12,000 years old, almost 7,000 years older than Mesopotamia’s Fertile Crescent, long heralded as the Cradle of Civilization.

“Gobekli Tepe, the oldest advanced site now on our planet. We know of no other site that is this advanced. It has now doubled the history of humanity.”

– Linda Moulton Howe
(Author / Investigative Journalist, Earthfiles)

“And right there is this gigantic site with huge, megalithic, circular structures. It just stands there, a mystery, asking us to go figure, “How was this done?” “What’s the background to this?” We don’t know who made them. They just come out of the darkness of the last Ice Age, where we know nothing, and enter the stage of history, already fully formed. And to my mind, this is indicative of a major forgotten episode in human history.”

Graham Hancock (Author, Fingerprints of the Gods)

Could the discovery of Gobekli Tepe radically change our understanding of human history?  And might proof of an ancient civilization provide evidence that mankind’s most puzzling myths might actually be based in fact?

“A lot of myths, a lot of legends suggest that there were past civilizations of astounding sophistication at incredibly early periods. I think we have little glimmers, little suggestions around the world that there was something going on, much higher, much more sophisticated at a much earlier period of time.”

Robert M. Schoch, Ph.D.
(Geologist / Author, Forgotten Civilization)

“To put things into perspective, Gobekli Tepe is 12,000 years old. That is several thousand years earlier in age than Stonehenge and the Great Pyramid. And indeed, according to biblical tradition, the world really began in 4000 BC. And yet, that is 8,000 years later than the foundation of Gobekli Tepe. So, clearly, we have here something that contradicts our normal understanding of the evolution of civilization.”

– Andrew Collins (Author, Gateway to Atlantis),
(The Cygnus Mystery), (Beneath the Pyramids),
(Göbekli Tepe: Genesis of the Gods)

Curiously, after 13 years of digging, archaeologists investigating the ancient site have failed to recover a single stonecutting tool. Nor have they found any agricultural implements.

“How in the world can you contemplate 19-foot-tall, perfectly-sculpted columns that are 11,000 to 12,000 years old, and no tools?”

– Linda Moulton Howe
(Author / Investigative Journalist, Earthfiles)

The mystery of Gobekli Tepe is further compounded by the ancient stone carvings found throughout the site. They depict creatures like armadillos, wild boars and geese – animals not indigenous to the region.

“We see various types of creatures, different animals, birds, insects, and even abstract human forms that seem to come together to create this very weird menagerie which has totally baffled the archaeologists who have uncovered this site. Now what they represent is a matter of speculation, but it’s my intuition that they may even represent an ark in stone.”

– Andrew Collins (Author, Gateway to Atlantis),
(The Cygnus Mystery), (Beneath the Pyramids),
(Göbekli Tepe: Genesis of the Gods)

Located less than 350 miles from Mount Ararat, the site many biblical scholars believe to be the resting place of Noah’s Ark, the animal carvings of Gobekli Tepe suggest a time in the region’s history when the indigenous animal population may have been of a totally different anthropological origin. But do these carvings actually provide historical proof of the great flood that was described in the Bible?

“Archaeologists are aware that there are more than which destroyed an earlier civilization.”

Graham Hancock (Author, Fingerprints of the Gods)

Some researchers theorize that the events of a cataclysmic flood and a story similar to that told of Noah’s Ark was recorded on the stone pillars of Gobekli Tepe. If true, that would push the date of the great flood back to the end of the last Ice Age, far earlier than the biblical period.

“There is evidence that this may have ended quite catastrophically. There was a lot of things happening. A lot of migrations. Possibly waters rising up very quickly. A lot of rapid changes in lifestyles.”

– Andrew Collins (Author, Gateway to Atlantis),
(The Cygnus Mystery), (Beneath the Pyramids),
(Göbekli Tepe: Genesis of the Gods)

But another, perhaps even more profound, question remains. Who built Gobekli Tepe? For what purpose? And how did such an ancient site remain in nearly pristine condition for more than 10,000 years?

“In the case of Gobekli Tepe, we find that the site was carefully placed underneath sand. This site was buried. It appears as if somehow the usage of Gobekli Tepe was no longer there, and that people moved on, but had such a reverence to this important site that rather than destroy it, they put it to peace by burying it.”

– Philip Coppens
(Author, The Ancient Alien Question),
(The Lost Civilization Enigma)

But why would the area’s inhabitants carefully bury their monuments under 20 feet of sand?  Is it possible that Gobekli Tepe was deliberately buried in order to protect it from invaders? Or might the intention have been to preserve it, in hope, someday, to return?

“You have to ask yourself, why is someone building these massive structures all over the world? And many of them are very similar. It leaves us to think that there is some connection between all these ancient sites. That the builders were all doing it for a similar purpose.”

David Childress (Author, Technology of the Gods)

“I do see a similarity across the globe from megalithic sites where these past cultures explain that they were built by the gods. But were they really gods? Or could they have been extraterrestrials?”

– Jason Martell
(Founder, AncientSchool),
(Author, Knowledge Apocalypse)

Perhaps the answers can be found by examining another ancient site, one located half a world away in the mountains of Peru.


Previous: Introduction | Next: Cuzco



[1] Prometheus Entertainment. (2010). Ancient Aliens: Season 2. [DVD Back Cover]. Los Angeles, CA: A&E Networks, LLC / History™.

[2] History™. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.1 – Mysterious Places. [Episode Description]. Retrieved: October 28, 2010, from http://www.history.com/shows/ancient-aliens/season-2.

[3] History™. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.2 – Gods & Aliens. [Episode Description].  Retrieved: November 4, 2010, from http://www.history.com/shows/ancient-aliens/season-2.

[4] History™. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.3 – Underwater Worlds. [Episode Description]. Retrieved: November 11, 2010, http://www.history.com/shows/ancient-aliens/season-2.

[5] History™. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.4 – Underground Aliens. [Episode Description]. Retrieved: November 18, 2010, from http://www.history.com/shows/ancient-aliens/season-2.

[6] History™. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.5 – Aliens & the Third Reich. [Episode Description]. Retrieved: November 25, 2010, from http://www.history.com/shows/ancient-aliens/season-2.

[7] History™. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.6 – Alien Tech. [Episode Description]. Retrieved: December 2, 2010 from http://www.history.com/shows/ancient-aliens/season-2.

[8] History™. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.7 – Angels & Aliens. [Episode Description]. Retrieved: December 9, 2010, from  http://www.history.com/shows/ancient-aliens/season-2.

[9] History™. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.8 – Unexplained Structures. [Episode Description]. Retrieved: December 16, 2010 from http://www.histoy.com/shows/ancient-aliens/season-2.

[9a] Prometheus Entertainment. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.8 – Unexplained Structures. [DVD Footage: Introduction]. Los Angeles, CA: A&E Networks, LLC / History™.

[9b] Prometheus Entertainment. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.8 – Unexplained Structures. [DVD Footage: Gobekli Tepe]. Los Angeles, CA: A&E Networks, LLC / History™.

[9c] Prometheus Entertainment. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.8 – Unexplained Structures. [DVD Footage: Cuzco]. Los Angeles, CA: A&E Networks, LLC / History™.

[9d] Prometheus Entertainment. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.8 – Unexplained Structures. [DVD Footage: Carnac]. Los Angeles, CA: A&E Networks, LLC / History™.

[9e] Prometheus Entertainment. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.8 – Unexplained Structures. [DVD Footage: Armenian Stonehenge]. Los Angeles, CA: A&E Networks, LLC / History™.

[9f] Prometheus Entertainment. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.8 – Unexplained Structures. [DVD Footage: Homestead]. Los Angeles, CA: A&E Networks, LLC / History™.

[10] History™. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.9 – Alien Devastations. [Episode Description]. Retrieved: December 23, 2010 from http://www.history.com/shows/ancient-aliens/season-2.

[11] History™. (2010). Ancient Aliens: 2.10 – Alien Contacts. [Episode Description]. Retrieved: December 30, 2010 from http://www.history.com/shows/ancient-aliens/season-2.


Who were they?… Why did they come?… What did they leave behind?… Where did they go?… Will they return?…

%d bloggers like this: