ITINERARIES AND HISTORICAL SITES
CLASSICAL SITES BY BOAT
We visit sites that are household names like Ephesus and Troy and others such as Arykanda, Labranda and Aegae located in remote and beautiful settings which are still amongs the most unfrequented and unspoilt sites in the ancient world. Sometimes will spent the night in the ancient harbours of the sites we are visiting as at Knidos or Lasos and a refreshing swim is often the ideal conclusion to a tour of the ruins.
There are sites of interest in the itineraries from Greek,Roman,Byzantine,Crusader and Turkish past as well as signs of the unsettled earlier history of the 20th century. Then there are the vievs and sunsets the Dodecanese from the headland of Myndos, the island of Lade and the backdrop of Samos from the theatre at Milletus,Kekova sound from the Lycian cemetery at Teimiussa and Mt. Olympus from Phaselis.
The Lycian shores and hillsides are famous for their rock cut tombs.
FETHIYE (Ancient TELMESSUS):
Lycian Sarcophagi may still be found in the streets and there are some remarkable rock cut temple tombs above the town. (may go to Tlos by bus)
At the head of the bay of Fethiye lies the monastic island of Gemiler, San Nicalao in the charts and a place with increasingly intriguing links to St. Nicolas of Sion and the famous St. Nicolas (Santa Clause)
KALKAN Sites: XANTHUS, LETOON
Letoon,the ancient sanctuary of Leto and her children, Artemis and Apollo and the reliouges heart of Lycia.
Xantus is the capital of the Lycian league.
Patara is birth place of St. Nicolas.
KAS Site: ANTIPHELLUS
Kas is a beautiful village of white-washed house covered with the rich purples of bougainvillage.
Ancient town of Teimussa in Kekova is one of the finest and most evocative Lycian burial grounds by the waters edge.
Village Kale is bellow an idyllic Ottoman fort on the site of ancient Simena
Famous for its almost perfectly preserved Roman theatre and tombs hewn out of the rock face in tier upon tier bellow the ancient acropolis.
The pirate stronghold of the Zeniketes. Amidst the trees and dense regetation, one can discover the remains of ancient buildings, tombs and numerous inscriptions. Olympus was also famous for its letter oracle which we can read.
Near Porto Genovese, you can be transported up into the mountains to a point from where a walk of some forty minutes up a clearly marked path we bring you to the site of what ancient mariners believed to be a fire – breathing beast, the Chimaera. There you can still see flickering a flame produced by methane gas rather than the Chimaera!
Phaselis is where Alexandre recived a golden crown and spent his first winter. A walk through the triumphal archway built for Hadrian when he visited the city in 129 AD leads along an exellently preserved street. The street joins the city’s three harbours to an agora where the statue bases of the notables of Phaselis remind us of the city’s wealth and importance.
IONIA & CARIA
THE TEMPLE OF APOLLO AT DIDYMA
Consulted by Croesus, destroyed by the Persians, Favoured by Alexandre,Seleucus,Trajan and Hadrian, it was eventually eclipsed by the rise of Christianity. The vast temple is well preserved and an awesome reminder of the wealth of such places.
One of the great cities laid low by geographical changes nearby lies the island of Lade where the greeks were defeated in a naval battle in 494 BC before Miletus, itself was captured.
Iasos is a place where you feel you are almost Stumbling upon agoras, theatre,villas,mosaics and harbour moles.
Ephesus is one of the largest archaeological sites in the world and famous throughout history for its Temple of Artemis, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. Ephesus formed a focal point in the ancient world because of its protected harbor and as a starting point for the Royal Road via Sardis to Susa. It was also a cult center attracting thousands of pilgrims for traditional worship of the female, first Cybele, then Artemis and finally the Virgin Mary in the Christian period. Begin the visit from the Upper Agora. Clustered around this agora were the Varius Baths and the Odeon, both from the second century A.D., the Prytaneon or Town Hall, and the Temple of Domitian-the first temple of Ephesus to be built in the name of an emperor. Then down towards the Pollio and Trajan Fountains, the Temple of Hadrian, the Scholastika Baths and the Hercules Gate.At the start of the Marble Street is the lower Agora, the Celsus Library. Then down to the Theatre and Arcadian way. House of the Virgin Mary, is nearby on Bulbuldag (Mt. Nightingale). According to tradition St. John brought Mary to Ephesus after the death of Christ, and she spent the last days of her life here. Officially sanctioned by the Vatican, it is now a popular site of pilgrimage. The Ephesus Archaeological Museum in Selcuk has been enlarged and display the many impressive works of art recovered from and around Ephesus.
A sheltered ancient harbour where the pretty village of Gumusluk takes place. You can walk the walls or climb the acropolis of Myndos, a lelegian settlement probably transfered to this site in the 4th. Century BC by the satrap Mausolus. The sun set view of the Dodecanese ,is without equal.
Bodrum was known as Halicarnassus in ancient times. Herodotus was born here in 485 B.C. Mausolos, the Carian King of the region, made Bodrum its capital in the fourth century and after his death his wife built him a Mausoleum which became one of the seven wonders of the world. Nothing much is left today of this Mausoleum but the location is still visited. Bodrum today is a lively summer resort, buzzling with people, restaurants, bars and night life. Bodrum Castle and the Underwater Archaeology Museum within the castle are the highlights. The castle was built by the Knights of St. John of Rhodes between 1402 and 1415. The castle was restored and established as an archaeological museum in 1964. This museum which houses both land and underwater relics, is considered to be the most important underwater archaeological museum in the world. There are many finds taken from six shipwrecks dating back to the 11th Century B.C. A more recent denizen of the Museum is the Princess Ada of Caria, who had lived in Bodrum 2350 years ago! Her well preserved skeleton was found in a tomb in the outskirts of Bodrum sometime in 1989. The skull and teeth were in such good condition that it was suggested a facial reconstruction may be possible. Dr. Neave and his team undertook the reconstruction and the result was successful.
You understand why Vitruvius likened the layout of the city to an amphitheatre. Here was the home of Heredotus and Xerxes favoured queen, Artemisia. Mausolus made Halicarnassus his capital. His tomb, known as the Mausoleum, is one of the wonders of the ancient world. Maritime museum in the castle is worth to be visited.
Hellenistic city and the site of the temple of Aphrodite, where tourists in antiquity flocked to see Praxiteles statue of the goodess. Here was the last part of call in Asia Minor for the grain ships battling against the winds from Egypt to Rome.
Rhodian Fortress lies at the head of the bay where the Athenian Conon prepared to meet his Spartan rival, Peisander, with some 98 tririmes. The view across the water towards Rhodos at sunset from this, one of her mainland possessions, reminds of the enormous power and strategic influence once exercised by this island.
You take a small river boat which winds its way through the tall reeds of the Dalyan River to the site of Caunos, its harbour silted up, its agora overgrown and a lonely fig tree rising evocatively from the theatre seats. Along inscriptions near the quayside testifies to the attempts made to attract trade in a desparete bid for survival.