From Selçuk and Ephesus,
you can tour the three fascinating
sites of Priene, Miletus and Didyma in
a long morning or afternoon or, more
comfortably, make it a full day (map).
your own transport,
either a rental
car or a taxi hired
for a half-day. You can easily rent
a car from Anker Travel.
If a taxi, ask at
your hotel for a driver recommendation,
to the Selçuk otogar (bus station) and haggle with a driver
or two for a four- or five-hour rate
taking you to Priene, Miletus and Didyma,
with about an hour waiting
time at each site, more time if you
like taking your time and looking at
every feature and building of a site.
In summer, minibus tours of
these three sites run from the Selçuk otogar,
departing at 09:00 am, spending an
hour at Priene,
an hour and a half at Miletus,
2-1/2 hours at Didyma (you
only need an hour to see the temple,
but you can also have lunch), then
1-1/2 hours at Altınkum
just south of Didyma, for a swim, before
returning to Selçuk by
18:00 (6 pm).
If you do it on your own, allow
at least four hours (five
is better) for this tour, not counting
simple restaurants available
near all three archeological sites,
but you might want
pack your own snacks and picnic
Also bring water in
the summer months to avoid dehydration.
You can buy drinks along the way, but
you should also have your own water
Drive south 35 km (22 miles) from Selçuk or
southeast 20 km (12.5 miles) from
signs for Güllübahçe
(10 km, 6 miles)
one km farther along.
If you need services (drinks, restaurant,
shops, simple lodgings), you can find
them in Güllübahçe.
After your visit to Priene,
drive 22 km (14 miles) to Miletus
(Milet, Balat), west along
the northern edge of the
Meander River (Menderes
plain, then south to cross
the broad, level flood plain, planted
mostly in cotton. At this point, near
where it empties into the Aegean
the once-mighty river is a mere trickle
of its former
mighty self, constrained in a few narrow
channels, its precious liquid already
spread over the vast expanse of fertile
land along the Meander's course.
The huge theater
at Miletus rises
to greet you as you reach the southern
edge of the flood plain. Turn left
to reach the theater and, in front
of it, a copse of trees with a parking
lot, restaurant, drinks and snack shop,
and toilets. The Miletus Museum is
about one km south along the side road
Miletus, go 4.5 km (3 miles) south
on either the old road (passing the
Miletus Museum) or the newer highway
to the west.
South of Akköy,
follow signs for Yenihisar (Didim/Didyma),
driving 14 km (9 miles) to its gigantic
of Apollo. There are restaurants,
drinks and snack stands, and lodgings
right around the temple.
km (2.5 miles) south of Didyma, is
very busy in summer, with a significant
population of British and European
Retrace your route from Didyma to
return to Selçuk (86
km, 54 miles) or Kuşadası
(71 km, 44 miles).
If you're heading onward to Bodrum,
you can drive eastward from Yenihisar or Akköy to
join the highway to Milas,
south of which you turn right and
climb into the mountains on your
way to Bodrum.
—by Tom Brosnahan
set dramatically beneath
tunnels at Didyma.
Above, the Great
Theater at Miletus.