is the best-preserved Roman city in
the Mediterranean region (map),
and one of Turkey's top sights along with Istanbul and Cappadocia,
but the Ephesus
archeological site is
not the only reason to visit this region.
the town 3 km (2 miles) east of the Ephesus
archeological site, lies at the
foot of Ayasoluk Hill, topped
by a Byzantine-Ottoman fortress.
On the slope are the St
John Basilica and İsa
both worth a visit, and below them the scant remains of the renowned Artemision, the famous Roman Temple of Artemis. The fine Ephesus Museum holds the excavation treasures. More...
Selçuk has a big weekly market on Saturday, rivaling the famous weekly market
at Tire (TEE-reh), a town 42 km (26 miles) northeast of Selçuk.
Good beaches are at Pamucak, Kuşadası and Altınkum,
or you can take a day-trip for beach and windsurfing to charming Alaçatı.
can see the Ephesus archeological site on a flying day-trip from Istanbul, but you could easily fill two, three or four
days in this area,
visiting the ancient cities of Priene, Miletus and Didyma on
excursion, and Aphrodisias, the Belevi Monumental Tomb, the
hot mineral water spa of Pamukkale,
and taking a day-trip or overnight excursion
via Euromos to Bodrum.
Hotels & Guest Houses
Three area towns have plenty of hotel choices:
The town next to Ephesus has a good collection of small, charming boutique hotels and thrifty guest houses. Selçuk has the best transport, and you can walk to many of the sights when you stay here. More...
This beautiful, historic Ottoman village a few kilometers east of Selçuk in the hills reminds me of Tuscany—Ottoman-style. Historic houses and mansions have been restored as atmospheric inns, with the bonus of panoramic views over vineyards and olive orchards. Transport is by hire/rental car or minibus. More...
A seaside resort and cruise ship port, Kuşadası has grown almost to city size (pop. 95,000), giving it bustle and traffic, but its seaside promenade and beaches still draw visitors. Large resort hotels line the beaches, but the town has smaller, less expensive modern hotels, and even a few boutique hotels. More...
information, for the Ephesus
region, my İzmir
Region Transport Map, and distances
and travel times to/from
other Turkish towns and cities.
how to drive between İzmir's Adnan
Menderes Airport (ADB) and Selçuk,
Şirince, Ephesus and Kuşadası.
can drive from Istanbul to
Ephesus (770km/478 miles), seeing the Dardanelles (Hellespont), Gallipoli
battlefields, ancient Troy and Pergamum (Pergamon,
Bergama) and other sights along
the way. Argeus
Travel & Events can
set you up with a 6-day
self-drive tour covering Troy,
battlefields, Pergamum and Ephesus.
A Bit of History
you want to visit a place where you
can really get a feel for what
life was like 2000 years ago during
the glory-days of Greece and Rome, Ephesus is
the place. In terms of ruins, it's better
than Rome itself.
Paul's New Testament Epistle
to the Ephesians was written
to the citizens of Ephesus. St
John is believed to have
written his Gospel here, and to
have been buried in the St
John Basilica. More...
Mary is believed to have
spent her last days on earth here,
and you can visit the reconstructed House
of the Virgin Mary (Meryemana) on
a mountaintop to the south of the
Ephesus archeological site. More...
—by Tom Brosnahan