About the Region
The CRANE Project focuses on the Orontes Watershed, located in southeastern Turkey and northwestern Syria.
The Orontes River originates in Lebanon and flows north through northwestern Syria and into the Amuq valley or “Plain of Antioch” in the Hatay Province of Turkey. Here, it is joined by the Karasu and Afrin tributaries. The river then bends to the southwest, eventually emptying into the Mediterranean Sea. The river system is some 500 km in length and drains a total area of around 24,000 km.
The valleys and plains of the Orontes Watershed have long been vital communication routes and their fertility made them attractive locations for settlement. Over a century of archaeological survey and excavation in this region shows continuous habitation dating back at least to the Paleolithic.
Intermountain valley in the Amanus mountains.
Nouria on the Orontes river in Hama.
Unfinished statues from the Iron Age site of Yesemek in the Islahiye valley.
Kel Dağ or Jebel Aqra seen from the town of Samandağ at the mouth of the Orontes river.
The Amuq Valley seen from Baqras Castle.
The Afrin Valley from 'Ain Dara.
Tilmen Höyük in the Islahiye plain.
The Orontes river in Hama.
The city of Antakya, ancient Antioch on the Orontes.
The Orontes river valley from Samandağ.
The Afrin Valley, tributary of the Orontes.
The Yarşeli Dam in the Avsuyu Valley of the Amuq Plain.
The Amuq Plain from the Amanus mountains.