The Seljuk Empire, an exceptional period of politics,
commerce and art, flourished from the 11-13th centuries in Turkey. The
short but golden era was situated between the Crusades and the Mongol invasions,
and was led by the Seljuk Sultans from their capital at Konya. The Seljuk
Period (1071-1306) is especially famous for its architecture and decorative arts.
Some of the most outstanding architectural works of the Seljuk Period are caravanserais.
More commonly called by their Turkish name, "hans", these buildings were used as trading posts and
overnight inns. They facilitated trade and were responsible in part for the
prosperity of this glorious period of Turkish history. There are
approximately 170 still standing, and they represent some of the most impressive
constructions in the entire history of Islamic architecture. This website is dedicated to this distinctive set of buildings.