Basilica of Saint John and Ayasuluk Fortress

The landscape of Selçuk is dominated by impressive Ayasoluk Hill. The oldest traces of human settlements on this hill date back to the period of early Bronze Age (3000-2000 BC). However, the attention of tourists is mainly attracted to the ruins of the magnificent Basilica of Saint John. There is also a mighty fortress towering above this site.

The Basilica of Saint John
The Basilica of Saint John

Alexandria Troas

Alexandria Troas was the ancient port city in the Troad, founded by Antigonus I Monophthalmus - one of the generals of Alexander the Great - as Antigoneia. After the death of Antigonus, another Macedonian commander - Lysimachus - controlled the Troad. The city was then renamed to Alexandria, in honor of the great Macedonian leader. Because there were many cities called Alexandria in those days, this particular Alexandria was given the term "Troas" or "from the Troad."

Alexandria Troas
Alexandria Troas

Karabiga (Priapos)

Karabiga is a small port city, situated on the shore of the Sea of Marmara in Çanakkale Province. The fascinating history of the town is inextricably linked with the cult of the god Priapus, from which came the ancient name of the settlement. The location of the city, near the mouth of the River Biga, in a small bay, favored the development of the settlement as a trading port. Even today Karabiga is an important harbor for container ships.

Karabiga (Priapos)
Karabiga (Priapos)

Dardanos

Dardanos Tumulus is considered one of the most important archaeological sites in the region of Troad. Despite the importance of this burial place and its priceless contents, there are few systematic studies concerning this discovery. What is more, a visit to the site may also be quite disappointing. The golden treasures of Dardanos exhibited in the Archaeology Museum in Çanakkale may prove to be much more attractive.

Dardanos Tumulus
Dardanos Tumulus

Temple of Apollo at Didyma

Didyma was famous throughout the ancient world as the place where a colossal temple of Apollo stood, and the oracle revealed the future. In its heyday, Didyma was not a city, but a place of worship, connected with Miletus by the so-called Sacred Way. This road was used by the pilgrims who arrived at Didyma, seeking answers to nagging questions.

In the ancient period, Didyma never had the distinction of being the biggest or the most important religious center. The Temple of Apollo located there was the second largest after the Artemision of Ephesus, and its oracle - the second most influential after Delphi. However, nowadays the visit to Didyma is much more exciting experience than looking at a single column that remained from the Artemision of Ephesus.

Temple of Apollo at Didyma
Temple of Apollo at Didyma

Lyrbe

Off the beaten track, in Taurus mountains, lie picturesque ruins of ancient Lyrbe. Only a few years ago, the ruins of this ancient city were not easily accessible to the public. What is more, even the identification of this city and its name raised serious doubts among researchers. Recently the road leading to the gate of Lyrbe has been tarmacked and the ruins have attracted more and more tourists, mostly brought there by the pompously called "jeep safari" tours. However, if you are lucky and plan the timing of your arrival carefully, you will be able to have this entire ancient city entirely at your disposal. Lyrbe is located far away from the Mediterranean coast, but the well-preserved agora and the picturesque location in the middle of the forest make this trip a spectacular experience.

The ruins of Lyrbe
The ruins of Lyrbe

Symmetrical Church (Aynalı Kilise) in Göreme

Halfway between Göreme and Ortahisar hides one of the most charming rock churches in Cappadocia. It is the Symmetrical Church (tr. Aynalı Kilise), called so because of its geometric ornamentations, mirrored on the opposite walls. Exploration of the interior and the adjacent monastery complex is a great adventure for all travelers who are not afraid of the dark and narrow, steep passages.

Symmetrical Church (Aynalı Kilise) in Göreme
Symmetrical Church (Aynalı Kilise) in Göreme

Rise in museum admission fees in Turkey 2016

Topkapı Palace in Istanbul
Topkapı Palace in Istanbul

On 4 January 2016, ticket prices to many museums and archaeological sites in Turkey were significantly increased. On the one hand, it is an economically justified move, since Turkish lira has recently been depreciated against the euro and the US dollar. On the other hand, this decision has caused discontent and many protests, especially among the representatives of the Turkish tourism sector. They fear that high ticket prices will deter tourists from visiting the most popular places in Turkey, including - Pamukkale and Ephesus. Also, the largest opposition party in the Turkish parliament, i.e. CHP, issued a request to the Minister of Culture and Tourism, Mahir Ünal, urging him to cancel the decision.

Pages

Subscribe to Turkish Archaeological News RSS