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Top Archaeological Sites in Kusadasi

Top Archaeological Sites in Kusadasi

Known for its beaches and festive ambiance, the Turkish resort town of Kuşadasi is also a popular destination for archaeology enthusiasts, thanks to its proximity to a number of impressive ancient sites. From UNESCO World Heritage Sites to millennia-old ruins, here are the top archaeological sites to explore in Kuşadasi and the surrounding region.


Kuşadasi Castle

While Kuşadasi is most often seen as a jumping-off point for Ephesus and other top-ticket archaeological sites, the lively coastal city has its own historical draws. Its highlight is the Byzantine-era Kuşadasi Castle, which occupies the petite Pigeon Island and was recently restored to its former glory.

 

Hierapolis and Pamukkale

Together a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the ancient city of Hierapolis and the Pamukkale hot springs are two of Turkey’s most distinctive attractions. A busy spa center established in the 2nd century BC, Hierapolis is renowned for its enormous necropolis and sizeable theater. Just adjacent is Pamukkale, an extraordinary area where calcite-laden spring waters have created natural terraced basins and travertine formations. The site still hosts public springs today.

 

Ephesus

Notable for the enormity of its scale, UNESCO-listed Ephesus is a must-see for history buffs. Among the largest and most complete ancient cities in Asia, this sprawling archaeological complex includes dozens of highlights. The site’s Temple of Artemis was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and its ruins can still be seen today. Other essential stops include the Fountain of Trajan, the Temple of Hadrian, and the Library of Celsus.

 

House of the Virgin Mary

Just adjacent to Ephesus, the House of the Virgin Mary is a popular destination in its own right, particularly as a pilgrimage site. Said to be the former residence of the Virgin Mary, the small stone chapel has been visited by several popes. The Basilica of St. John, part of Ephesus, is another popular stop for Christian pilgrims.

 

Sardis

The Lydian capital of Sardis offers a bevy of striking ruins. A major attraction of the ancient city, known for having had a large Jewish community, is the Sardis Synagogue, among the largest ancient synagogues ever excavated. The painstakingly restored Marble Court of Sardis and the Temple of Artemis are also impressive to behold.

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8 Tours and Activities

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Small-Group Tour to Ephesus From Kusadasi&Selcuk

Small-Group Tour to Ephesus From Kusadasi&Selcuk

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11
Let your imagination run wild as you explore the ancient ruins of Ephesus and learn its long history of Greek and Roman rule on this 4-hour, small-group tour from Kusadasi, including hotel or port pickup. Follow your guide around the magnificent ruins, including the Great Theater, the Library of Celsus and the Temple of Hadrian, then visit the remains of the Temple of Artemis and learn how the sparse ruins were once one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$39.00
From
$39.00

Private Tour: Ephesus Day Trip

Private Tour: Ephesus Day Trip

star-4.5
16
Journey to Ephesus and discover one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World and more during this private guided day trip from Kusadasi. Follow your guide along marble streets older than Christ to the Library of Celsius, the Great Theater, and Hadrian's Temple and learn about the ancient heritage and history of Ephesus.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$243.43
Price varies by group size
From
$243.43
Price varies by group size

Ephesus Sightseeing Tour

Ephesus Sightseeing Tour

star-4.5
49
Venture back in time and experience Christian history during a guided sightseeing tour of Ephesus from Kusadesi. Travel to the Mediterranean’s ancient city and discover one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World - the Temple of Artemis. Admire the immensity of the Library of Celsus and the Great Theater. You will have a traditional Turkish lunch and then be inspired by the House of the Virgin Mary, where Mary eternally rests.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$85.00
From
$85.00

Private Ephesus Terrace Houses, Temple of Artemis and House of Virgin Mary Tour

Private Ephesus Terrace Houses, Temple of Artemis and House of Virgin Mary Tour

star-5
1
Walk in the hallowed footsteps of Cleopatra, Mark Antony, the Virgin Mary and John the Apostle as you tour some of Turkey’s most impressive historic sites. This full-day small-group tour from Kusadasi takes in Ephesus Ancient City, the Terrace Houses, the House of Virgin Mary and the Temple of Artemis, and includes lunch and hotel or port pickup.
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  • 5 to 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$165.00
From
$165.00

Private Ephesus, House of Virgin Mary and Temple of Artemis Tour from Kusadasi

Private Ephesus, House of Virgin Mary and Temple of Artemis Tour from Kusadasi

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2
Follow in the footsteps of Cleopatra, Mark Antony, the Virgin Mary and St Paul on this full-day small-group tour from Kusadasi, taking in the most fascinating remains of the Ephesus ancient city. See the Great Theater, where St Paul once preached, the Library of Celsus and the Roman baths, then visit the Church of the Virgin Mary, where the Mother of Jesus lived her final days. Finally, take a peek at the ruins of the Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
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  • 8 to 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$165.00
From
$165.00

Private Jewish Heritage Tour: Sardis and Izmir Day Trip from Kusadasi

Private Jewish Heritage Tour: Sardis and Izmir Day Trip from Kusadasi

Embark on a unique pilgrimage to the ancient ruins of Sardis on this full-day private Jewish Heritage tour from Kusadasi, including lunch and hotel transfers. Explore the remains of the Lydian capital, once home to one of St John’s Seven Churches of Asia, then view its striking Roman synagogue. Next, journey to nearby Izmir to wander around the Jewish quarters of Karataş and Kemeraltı, stopping to admire the many synagogues and landmark Asansör.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$190.00
Price varies by group size
From
$190.00
Price varies by group size

Ephesus and Ephesus Museum for Archaeology Lovers From Kusadasi with Private Guide and Van

Ephesus and Ephesus Museum for Archaeology Lovers From Kusadasi with Private Guide and Van

Ephesus is one of Turkey’s most visited ancient sites, but most visitors don’t explore beyond its star attractions. This private half-day tour from Kusadasi is designed for archeology lovers, including a tour of key ruins such as the Odeon, Celsus Library and Great Theatre, plus a visit to the Ephesus Archeology Museum to discover the lesser-known excavations and learn more about the site’s historic significance.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$308.74
per group
From
$308.74
per group

Private Tour: Laodicea and Aphrodisias Day Trip From Kusadasi

Private Tour: Laodicea and Aphrodisias Day Trip From Kusadasi

star-4.5
3
Visit two unique ancient sites, Laodicea and Aphrodisias, on this full-day private tour from Kusadasi. Explore the ruins of baths, theaters and colonnaded streets in Laodicea, once an important trade city and home to one of the Seven Churches of Revelation. After lunch (included), step back in time as you tour the Greco-Roman city of Aphrodisias and learn how it was dedicated to Aphrodite, the goddess of Love.
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  • 12 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$252.50
Price varies by group size
From
$252.50
Price varies by group size