The ancient city of Ephesus, located in the Izmir, Kusadasi region, is undoubtedly one of Turkey’s most extraordinary tourist destinations. Archaeologists have spent over a century unearthing the secrets of the city, and its ruins are some of the best-preserved in the world.
Attracting more than two million visitors each year, it’s thought that up to 80% of the city is yet to be unearthed. A trip to these stunning ancient ruins is sure to provide you with an unforgettable and humbling experience.
If you’re planning on visiting Ephesus on your holiday to Turkey, below you’ll discover more about this ancient city, and how to make the most of your stay.
Discover the fascinating history of Ephesus
At one time, Ephesus was a vibrant Roman city, boasting a population of around 250,000. This made it the fourth largest city in the Roman empire. The city also attracted sailors, pilgrims and traders, adding to its vibrant, multi-cultural scene.
The Temple of Artemis was the city’s most popular attraction, considered one of the seven wonders of the world. Today, its ruins can still be witnessed in the modern-day Selçuk area.
Top things to do while you’re there
There’s a lot to see on your trip to Ephesus, so if you don’t want to miss anything, it’s worth creating an itinerary ahead of time. Below, we’ll look at some of the top things to do to in the ancient city.
Explore the terraced houses
For an extra fee, you can explore the terraced houses of Ephesus within a roofed complex. There are seven extraordinary Roman Houses built here, and you’ll find informative signs explaining how the buildings were used throughout the different time periods. You’ll witness stunning marble and colourful mosaics, and get a real feel for what life was like in the city.
Library of Celsus
The Library of Celsus is one of the best attractions in the city, dating back to the beginning of the 2nd Century AD. It features stunning replica statues depicting the Four Virtues, and it was once the third largest library in the world. It’s a remarkable building that you really won’t want to miss.
Temple of Hadrian
Another popular attraction in the city, the Corinthian-style Temple of Hadrian, is a truly beautiful building. Built to honour Trajan’s successor, it was finished in AD 138 and originally featured a wooden roof. A key point to look out for while you’re here is the perfectly balanced main arch, featuring stunning intricate details.
The 210m street of Curetes Way gives you a fantastic insight into what Ephesian daily life was like. Featuring civic and religious buildings, restaurants and shops, the marble street truly is fascinating to walk down.
The Great Theatre was actually built under instruction from Hellenistic King Lysimachus. However, it was rebuilt between AD 41 and AD 117 by the Romans. It was capable of seating up to 25,000 people, and up until the 1990’s, rock concerts were held at the theatre. It’s so well preserved that it is still used to host events, and can now seat up to 8000 people.
These are just a small selection of the top things to do while you’re visiting Ephesus. Whichever buildings you choose to explore, you’ll find the experience truly unforgettable.
When is the best time of year to visit?
Ephesus and the Izmir region benefit from a largely pleasant climate all-year round. However, there are some factors to consider when trying to determine the best time to visit.
If you want to make the most of the hot weather, summer is the best time to go. In July, the sea offers particularly warm waters, averaging around 75 degrees Fahrenheit. However, it will be a lot busier during the summer months, so you may want to avoid travelling during this time if you want to miss the crowds. Generally speaking, the spring months and late autumn are the best times to visit.
Where to Stay?
Our Palm Wings Ephesus Beach Resort makes the ideal base for exploring the wonders of Ephesus, Turkey. Boasting its own private beach, six different restaurants, spacious rooms and three outdoor pools, it offers a truly luxurious getaway. Just 8km from the city centre, it even boasts its own waterpark, making it an ideal option for families.
Why not take a look at our range of other Kusadasi holidays now?