After the brilliant Turkish breakfast in our sweet hotel (still the Ayasoluk Boutique Hotel) we start for Ephesus. I am overwhelmed by the dimension of this ancient city. My guide Baris is an architect himself and draws my attention especially to the infrastructure of this city. There was everything, really everything for the public: theater, gymnasium, public toilets, rental houses, a drainage system...this city was ultra-modern.
Founded in the Hellenistic period, Ephesus was one of the most important and, with perhaps over 200,000 inhabitants, one of the great cities of the Roman Empire.
Besides the facade of the Celsus Library and the theater, which could seat 25,000 people, I am particularly fascinated by the terrace houses. They are tenement houses built against the hillside, with murals and mosaics that are among the best preserved private residences in the eastern Mediterranean.
If you like to imagine the everyday life of a big city in ancient times, you should definitely travel here, you can see more than anywhere else how people lived at that time.
Baris - who by the way is also a cigar smoker and will soon launch a very ingenious designer ashtray (I will inform you then) - shows me the Cave of the Seven Sleepers (exciting legend about time travel in antiquity, you have to read it here) and the Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, which however is almost completely destroyed.
Although we are very exhausted from the heat and the many kilometers (10 at the end of the day), we have not had enough and still look at the St. John's Basilica, which is located directly in the small town of Selcuk.
It was one of the largest sacred buildings of the Byzantine Empire and an early Christian basilica dedicated to St. John the Apostle.
Afterwards, we treat ourselves to a dip in the pool, plus an Efes beer (nomen est omen) and a cigar.
In the evening Baris shows me the beautiful coastal road between Selcuk and Teos Marina, where we all meet in a top fish restaurant (very cigar friendly) and end this wonderful day with fine Turkish white wine, raki, fish and cigars.
See you tomorrow!
Terrace Houses of Ephesus
Ephesus Archeaological Museum
Temple of Artemis
Basilica of St. John
Isa Bey Mosque
House of Virgin Mary
Grotto of Seven Sleepers
GPS coordinate of Ephesus, Turkey
Latitude: 37° 56' 56.1516'' N
Longitude: 27° 22' 3.5076'' E
Time Zone: Europe/Athens - Istanbul
Sığacık Mh, Marina Teos 4/15