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Tourist attractions Turkey

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  • 1 Sardis Gymnasium Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    At the attractive entrance to this ancient gymnasium, sculpted columns bear the effigies of divinities, satyrs and the face of a smiling faun. Built by the Romans, its purpose was more than just for sporting activities, as witnessed by the baths that..

  • 2 Karaburun Peninsula Recommended Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    This peninsula, covered with scrubland, olive trees and herds of goats, is a pastoral and agricultural landscape that has jealously maintained its typical appearance of bare mountains reflecting the sunlight, and deserted creeks and beaches. Access t..

  • 3 Seljuk Archaeological Museum Recommended Recommended

    Museums and art

    Kuþadasý Cad.

    An elegantly laid-out museum displaying an extraordinary collection, the archaeological museum in Selçuk brings together the most recent finds from Ephesus - its exhibits, which include famous items such as the effigy of the god Priapus, a statue of ..

  • 4 Ephesus: Curetes Street Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    A sacred way leading towards the Temple of Artemis, Curetes Street illustrates the paradoxes and refinement of life in the Ancient world. A stroll along it will leave you perplexed, admiring and amused all at the same time, as you come across public ..

  • 5 Nysa Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    If you leave Selçuk to the east, towards Aphrodisias and Pamukkale, you'll have a long trip ahead of you in the company of lorries and buses: here the national road crosses the vast Buyuk Menderes fertile plain. Why not break your journey halfway at ..

  • 6 Pamukkale-Hierapolis Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    Hot water springs saturated with limestone have modelled the strange landscape of the "cotton castle". Basins and pools overlap and stand one on top of the other like an opencast mine, cascading along the cliff and dotted with striking whit..

  • 7 Priene Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    The road to Priene wends its way between fields of cotton and copses of oleander, with the occasional agricultural hamlet dotted here and there. Delightfully secluded, Priene is tucked away on the eroded flank of Mount Mykale, appearing spectacularly..

  • 8 Miletus Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    At a time when the sea came right up to its ramparts, Miletus (Milet in Turkish), was one of the most powerful cities in Asia Minor. Considered a centre of intellectualism and innovation, it was built according to an octagonal plan, which was later t..

  • 9 Didyma Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    Nowadays, shops and bistros encircle this once secluded temple (c 330 BC), whose oracle attracted crowds keen to receive prophecies. The temple was built by the order of Alexander the Great. The columns that remain give an indication of its huge size..

  • 10 Heracleia Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    This region is a delight for nature lovers, from the gentle banks of Lake Bafa to the hills carpeted in olive groves and the area's lunar landscapes, comprising of a mass of sandstone rocks. Dotted around the heart of the village of Kapikiri, the rui..

  • 11 Castle of St Peter Recommended Recommended

    Architecture, castles and historic districts

    In the evening, when it is bathed in gold and silver light, the castle rises likes a mirage over the peninsula. It was built in 1402 by the Knights of St John of Jerusalem, who made use of the ruins from a neighbouring mausoleum, as witnessed by the ..

  • 12 Gulf of Köycegiz Recommended Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    Located 25km from the coast, this unique natural site is well and truly off the beaten track. The retreat of the Mediterranean has left in its wake sandy lagoons, a delightful lake (popular with fishermen who come here to catch bass and blue crabs), ..

  • 13 Iztuzu Beach Recommended Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    Boats heading to Kaunos continue their journey to the river estuary, a marshy delta enclosed by a huge sand bank. Iztuzu beach is a delight: a white desert-like strip of sand 7km long dotted with the occasional wooden hut built by Turkish summer visi..

  • 14 Ölüdeniz Bay Recommended Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    Located at the foot of the Baba Dagi mountain, hidden deep in the Gulf of Belcekiz, this lagoon of turquoise water surrounded by pine trees is separated from the sea by a bank of white sand. Olüdeniz Bay ("Dead Sea") is a protected site of ..

  • 15 Xanthos Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    The site of Xanthos fully deserves its status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with its remarkable Lycian funerary monuments, tombs and sarcophagi, a well-preserved theatre, and a 4m-tall obelisk adorned with archaic inscriptions. In 167 BC, after ma..

  • 16 Letoon Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    In a huge alluvial plain, often covered by water and crossed by the slow-flowing River Esen Cayi, is Letoon, the religious centre of ancient Xanthos and sanctuary of Leto, now a Unesco site. Three temples (c 2C BC) stand as a reminder of the cult to ..

  • 17 Patara Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    Patara's main attraction for holidaymakers is its beautiful white sandy beach which - unusually for the Mediterranean - has waves. Why not enjoy the sea when the sun is at its hottest and then explore the ruins of this beautiful site once the tempera..

  • 18 Church of St Nicholas Recommended Recommended

    Religious buildings

    Born in Patara in AD 300, St Nicholas became Bishop of Myra, then over the following centuries patron saint of children and merchants. His church (8C, but later remodelled) stands in the suburbs of Kale, surrounded by an attractive small garden. The ..

  • 19 Arycanda Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    Situated on a rocky promontory overlooked by the snowy peaks of Akdag (3 030m) and Kizlar Sivrisi (3 086m), the ancient town of Arycanda faces a spectacularly beautiful panorama. The ruins of the town are well preserved, starting with the theatre tha..

  • 20 Olympos Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    An important Lycian city in the 2C BC, Olympos lies between a creek of white sand and an area of old marshland now planted with flowers and wild vines and crossed by a canalised river. Methane gas once escaped from this marsh, causing spontaneous fir..

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