Aksu River (Turkey)

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The Aksu (ancient name in Greek Κεστρoς, Kestros), is a river of Antalya Province (southwestern Turkey), which rises in the mountains of Toros. The course of the Aksu is between the Düden to the west and of the Köprüçay to the east.


A treaty between the Hittite Great King Tudhaliya IV and his vassal, the king of Tarhuntassa, defined the latter's western border at the "Kastaraya River", near "Parha". Parha is likely the future Perga.[1]

As Kestros, the river is mentioned by Pomponius Mela as navigable, as far upriver as Perga, 60 stadia (about 11.1 kilometres (6.9 mi)) from its mouth, according to Strabo. It silted up over the Byzantine era, and Perga declined as a result.[2]


The Aksu is 100 metres (330 ft) wide at its mouth, and 3 metres (9.8 ft) deep within the bar, which extends across the mouth, and so shallow in places in its delta as to be impassable to boats that draw more than 1 foot (0.30 m) of water. The swell from the sea meeting the stream generally produces a violent surf.

At its headwaters is the Kovada Lake and just below that the Karacaören Dam reservoir.


  1. G. Beckman (1996). Hittite diplomatic texts. Atlanta.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>, no. 18C
  2. http://www.anatolia.luwo.be/destinations/perge.html

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