Kusadasi : The First Tourism Destination in Turkey
Kuşadası is one of the first tourist centers of Turkey is a district in the Aegean Sea coast of Aydın. The region grew in a short period of time with tourism influx that started in the 1960s. Now, it has one of the first destinations to come to mind when it comes to cruise tourism. In Kusadasi, there are Dilek Peninsula and Büyük Menderes Delta National Park where blue and green meet, blue flag beaches, vibrant nightlife and historical and touristic spots that bear the traces of different civilizations. At the same time with hundreds of accommodation facilities, the city stands out as a good alternative for those who want to vacation on the Aegean coast.
Visit the ruins of the ancient city Ephesus
Ephesus is the single major reason why the city of Kusadasi is a famous tourist destination. The ruins of the second largest Roman City of Ephesus are located just outside Kusadasi, they are amongst the best preserved ancient Greco-Roman remains found in the world. Matching up to standards of famous Greco-Roman ruins in countries like Greece and Italy, the ancient ruins of Ephesus are one of the top visited attractions in Turkey. Restored landmarks from the original city include the terrace houses, Celsius library, grand theatre, and Hadrian’s Temple and Curates Street. Regarding things to do in Kusadasi, this place is highly recommended, and my advice is to either buy a good travel book or go on a guided tour, to enhance your visit. You can choose either Daily Ephesus Tour or Kusadasi Package including Ephesus ancient city.
Explore The House of Virgin Mary
Situated in the Green Hills of Selcuk, near Ephesus is a small stone house which is an important pilgrimage destination for Catholics and Muslims alike. Monks and Nuns see to the upkeep of this place and Church masses happen on selected days. Believed to be the place where Virgin Mary spent her last days, this ordinary looking house leaves a lasting effect on those who visit this place. The tranquil gardens and ambiance of the Virgin Mary’s house, run by monks and nuns leaves a lasting effect, even on non-religious people. Suspected to be where she spent her last days, urban legends say three water springs bring an abundance of luck for health, wealth or fertility. Church services also take place on certain days. Check out our Daily Ephesus Tours with including Virgin Mary House.
Visit Seljuk Town: Temple of Artemis, Saint John’s Basilica, Isa Bey Cami
As well as the old aqueduct running through the centre, Saint Johns Basilica with its former baptism pool, church, and suspected tomb takes just an hour to explore. Just 5 minutes’ walk from there, Isa Bey Cami with excellent architecture dating from the Seljuk era of Turkey’s historical timeline is a beautiful mosque to visit. On the outskirts, Artemis Temple, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, sits in a small marshy field. Yet sadly, upon seeing what is left, you may be disappointed. Just one column is pathetically standing in among scattered carved stones, displaying little of its former glory. Check out our daily Kusadasi tour or Kusadasi package tours.
Visit the Temple of Apollo at Didyma
Home to the famed Oracle of Didyma and the second largest ancient Greek Temple, The Temple of Apollo still boasts its last remaining skyrocketing towers which once used to be 122 in number. Popularly known to be the best preserved Greek Temple in Turkey, this was home to the second most important oracle of the ancient world, just second to the Oracle of Delphi. This place still remains important for Greek Myth believers. Check out our daily Kusadasi tours or Kusadasi packages.
Take a walk through history at Priene
Once a popular bustling ancient port city, this place saw its golden days between 300 BC to 45 BC, during the period when its harbors were bustling with commerce. Meander River led to the ultimate demise of the city until it was completely abandoned in the 2 AD. The highlight of this ancient ruined city is the Ruins of the Temple of Apollo and the well preserved 6500 seater Greek amphitheater. Check out our special Priene& Miletos & Didyma Daily tour to see this ancient beauty.
Drink Wine at The Village of Sirince
High in the green hills of Seljuk, a small village, supposedly started by freed slaves from Ephesus has earned itself an international reputation for its homemade fruity wines. The village itself, with old Greek houses, an abandoned church, and spectacular landscape views is enjoyable. It is a long winding road to get up there, but once you have arrived, go wine tasting, explore cobbled streets and for good luck, throw a coin in the fountain of Saint Mary’s Church before settling down for a hearty Turkish style lunch in a traditional restaurant. Check Daily Ephesus & Sirince Village Wine Tour to explore by yourself.
Explore Pigeon Island And Visit The Museum
Pigeon Island, also known as Bird Island, is the symbol of Kusadasi and where the name Kusadasi (meaning Bird Island) originated from. The island was used for military purposes during the Ottoman Era and before, as the location of the island was strategic for securing the shores and preventing the attacks from the sea. The Byzantine castle standing on the rocks, used against pirates, is known as “Pirate Castle”. Visit the Museum or simply sit down and enjoy the panoramic view of Kusadasi. Check out our daily Kusadasi tours or Kusadasi packages.
Relax in the lap of nature at Dilek National Park
Four beaches, a spectacular coastline, fantastic views of the Aegean Sea and an abundant variety of flora and fauna make up Dilek National Park, just one of Turkey’s many protected conservation areas. On my last visit, I met the park’s resident wild boars and wandered many paths winding in among the forested area. Zeus cave is close to the entrance of Dilek Park. Hidden from view of the pathway, mythology says this is where he hid from his brother Poseidon. The freezing cold water, even in summer is a favorite spot for a swim break. Ideally, you need a car to visit Dilek National Park and Zeus cave, but many jeep safaris sold by local agents also visit it. Check out our daily Kusadasi tours or Kusadasi packages.
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