One of the main appeals of Kusadasi is its proximity to the ancient city of Ephesus, the best preserved classical city in the Eastern Mediterranean. Cleopatra, Mark Antony, the Virgin Mary, and John the Apostle all once walked its streets. This full-day guided tour from Kusadasi takes you to explore what is unquestionably one of the greatest sites of antiquity.
The largest open-air museum in Turkey, Ephesus contains more than 30 buildings and structures linked together by streets that still bear the mark of ancient chariot wheels. Your guide will show you the awe inspiring Great Theater, where St. Paul preached against the pagans and gladiators once engaged in battle. Walk along Marble Street to the Library of Celsus, the facade of which has been remarkably restored. You will also visit the Temple of Hadrian, Roman baths, and many other remarkable ruins.
The Church of the Virgin Mary lies just beyond Ephesus. According to Christian tradition, Mary was brought to Ephesus by the Apostle John after the resurrection of Christ and lived her final days here. This church was erected on the foundation of that house, and its authenticity has been confirmed by Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul II.
The Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Today there are only a series of columns and scattered ruins of this marvelous Hellenistic construction, though the grandeur of this colossal structure once exceeded that of the Parthenon.
Another possibile site are the Terrace Houses, located on the hill, opposite the Hadrian Temple. Also called as 'the houses of rich', important for the reason that they give us information about family life during the Roman period. They were built according to the Hippodamian plan of the city in which roads transected each other at right angels. There are six residential units on three terraces at the lower end of the slope of the Bulbul Mountain. The oldest building dates back into the 1C BC and continued in use as residence until the 7C AD.
The trip can also contain a visit to Basilica of St.John: It is believed that the evangelist St. John had spent his last years in the region around Ephesus and was buried in the southern slope of Ayosolug Hill. Three hundred years after the death of St. John, a small chapel was constructed over the grave in the 4th century. The church of St Johnwas changed into a marvelous basilica during the region of Emperor Justinian (527 -565 AD). St John, or the Apostle John, was the writer of the Fourth Gospel and the book of Revelation. The accounts of the Gospels agree that he is the son of Zebedee; together with his brother James, he began to follow Jesus while fishing in the Lake Galilee.
The Ephesus Museum is different from other many museums. It is not designed according to chronological order, on the contrary it has rooms with a theme. For example the rooms are called as The House Findings Room, The Hall of The Fountain Relics, The Hall of The Funerary Relics, The Hall of Artemis, The Gladiators Section etc.