Kusadasi & Ephesus
Page 6
Venice Trip & Cruise 2011

  MapOfEphesus2   Kusadasi ,

Kusadasi, a medium-size city on the Aegean coast of Turkey, is the port for excursions to Ephesus,
but is a very attractive city on its own, a major destination for sun-seekers from European countries.

In the harbour is a small island fortified by the Ottomans as a defensive citadel.
The island is now connected with a short causeway.



  MapOfEphesus2   Ephesus ,

Ephesus is less than 20 kms. from Kusadasi.
It was an ancient Greek city, and later a major Roman city. In fact, Ephesus was the
second largest city in the world (after Rome) in the 1st century BC, with a population of more than 250,000.

The city first gained fame for the Temple of Artemis (completed around 550 BC), which was
one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
Emperor Constantine I, who reigned over the Roman Empire from 306 to 337,
rebuilt much of the city and erected new public baths.
These are the ruins we see and they are very impressive.
But the town was again partially destroyed by an earthquake in 614 AD.
The final blow was the silting of the harbour which killed the city's importance as a commercial center.
Because of centuries of silting, the city that was a major port is now 10 kms inland.

Ephesus - Upper Town

Closer view of Upper Town street and columns

Close-up of columns - the 3 different architectural types right next to each other

From the top-most part of the city, we walked down this street.
Our private guide is on the left.

Temples and secular buildings lined the way.

What Bader liked most about Ephesus -- Nothing was roped off. We could walk anywhere and touch anything.
What Boden liked most -- Imagining Anthony and Cleopatra walking hand in hand on these streets.

Beautiful stone carving

My favorite shot of Ephesus, it is looking down toward the main part of the ruins
from the Gate of Hercules and out to the plain that used to be the harbour.
Think about Alexander the Great parading down this street!


The Temple of Hadrian is one of the most intact buildings.

Temple of Hadrian close-up

Temple of Hadrian super close-up of frieze

the famous Library and plaza - long view

Celsus Library
with the Gate of Augustus on the right (a.k.a. The Gate of Mazeus and Mythridates)

Statue in a nook of the library

Close-up of the Libary facade

The Great Theatre of Ephesus, a huge amphitheatre.
This is the grandest structure in the ancient city. The Great Theatre is located on the slope of a hill, easily seen from the surrounding areas. It was first constructed in the Hellenistic Period, in the third century BC. During the Roman Period, it was enlarged and redesigned as it is seen today. It has a capacity of 25,000. The seats are in 66 rows divided into three horizontal sections. The stage building is three-storied and 18 meters high. The theatre was used not only for concerts and plays, but also for religious, political and philosophical discussions, and for gladiator and animal fights.
and for concerts by Elton John and Sting. Oh, but that was in the 1980's. Never mind.
The ancient harbour was just down this street a hundred meters or so. It is now 10 kms away.

The last part of our day's tour was a very short (less than 10 min.) drive from the main ruins
to see this single column. Why?
This is all that remains standing of the beautiful, legendary
Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of The Ancient World.
The massive temple was destroyed in 401 AD by a religion-crazed mob.

Here's what we can no longer see, except for that one column.
This is a scale model reconstruction of the Temple of Artemis (ca. 550 BCE),
It was HUGE. One source says it was 55 x 115 meters; another says 80 x 130 meters.
Either way, it was much larger than a modern football/soccer field.
Compare this to the Parthenon, which was pretty big itself at 30.9 x 69.5 meters.

Check this out:
To see a video of what the ancient city of Ephesus used to look like, click here.

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