Meet your professionally trained guide and drive to Ephesus, approximately 30 minutes from Kusadasi. Famous in antiquity for its Temple of Artemus during the years of the Roman Empire, the Greek port of Ephesus became the greatest city in Asia Minor. You will start your 90 minute Ephesus walking tour at the upper Magnesia Gate, and work your way down through the city, ending near the ancient Harbor.
Along the way you will see the Forum, the Odeon, the Library of Celsus, the Thermal Baths of Scolastika and the Great Theater, built in the Greek era and reconstructed in the Roman period. It has played host to programs as varied as Paul and his sermons to the Ephesians, to concerts by Sting, in part due to its remarkable acoustics.
You will walk along the Arcadian Way, where once Mark Antony and Cleopatra rode in procession. You will hear stories of Alexander the Great, the Virgin Mary, and many other famous visitors who walked the same marble streets that you are walking. As you depart the Ephesus site, you will be able to view the hilltop ruins of the Basilica of St. John in the distance, which was erected over his grave in the 6th century A.D. by Emperor Justinian.
Returning to the town of Kusadasi, guests will have the option to end their tour in the shopping area, where they can attend a Turkish carpet explanation and explore the shops filled with jewelry, carpets, leather ware, and copper goods, or both. Turkish salespeople expect you to haggle and quite often you can get 10-15% off the listed price. Treat it as an adventure. The cruise pier is a 5-10 minute walk from the main shopping area.
Guests not wishing to attend the optional carpet shopping should stay on the bus and they will be taken directly back to the pier.
Please Note: Entrance to the Library of Celsus is included.
Reviewer: Sandra Doncaster
Our guide normally escorts a higher level of tour. He was extremely knowledgeable, suggested best spots for photos, tried to make sure we were in the shade when he was giving us extra information, and was personable. Ephesus is a must see, and he made it worth our while.
We did the afternoon tour and it was perfect. Ephesus was not crowded, our tour guide was fantastic and the weather was lovely. A wonderful way to see a magnificent place.
Reviewer: Donald Wilt
One of the best surprises and best excursions of our 10-day cruise. The guide was very informative and personable. Turkey is one of the best kept secrets of the middle east!
Not knowing what to expect in Turkey given it's instability, our tour and guide exceeded expectation! His training as an archaeologist combined with his passion for sharing so much about Turkey's history and culture made our bus ride and Ephesus tour fantastic! We learned so much, our brains may have been hurting at the end of the tour, but the shop near the port our guide took us to relieved the brain pressure while we learned the intricate details of handmade beautiful silk carpets!
The trip to Ancient Ephesus was extremely interesting and fascinating. The guide was knowledgeable and professional. We had ample time to view Ephesus and take pictures. I would take the same excursion again.