Ephesus, whose history dates back to 6000 BC, is located in the Selçuk district of İzmir, which was one of the twelve cities of Ionia during the classical Greek period. Visited by an average of one million local and foreign tourists a year, Ephesus Ruins is one of the important regions of our country in the UNESCO World Heritage List. There are the most important architectural and urban planning examples from different periods in the Ancient City of Ephesus, which contains symbols that shed light on the superior urbanization, architectural and religious history of the Hellenistic and Roman periods.

It also has an important accumulation in terms of religious history with the House of Virgin Mary, which is accepted as a place of pilgrimage by Christians, and Islamic structures built during the Principalities. The presence of the Temple of Artemis, one of the 7 wonders of the world, in Ephesus, which is among the most beautiful ancient cities of Turkey, also increases the attractiveness of the region.

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Information About Ephesus

One of the most important features of the Ancient City of Ephesus is that all its avenues and streets intersect each other at right angles. This architecture created by Hippodamos is called the “grid plan”. It is among the most developed cities in the world in its time. It was built with marble structures that required advanced technology and mastery according to the conditions of that time, is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. It is known that it was built for various purposes such as port trade, accommodation of foreign guests, temples, prisons, libraries, theaters.

Ephesus, whose history dates back to 6000 BC, is located in the Selçuk district of İzmir, which was one of the twelve cities of Ionia during the classical Greek period.

What To See in Ephesus?

Ephesus is a magnificent place with many places to see and history gushing from every point. In this article, we will talk about six historical buildings that you must see when you go to Ephesus.

Ephesus Ancient Theater

Ephesus Antique Theater, which is the largest open-air theater of the ancient period, has three floors and a capacity of 25 thousand people. Although the stage of the theater, which has 65 rows, is in ruins, the seating areas are in good condition. Located at the foot of Panayır Mountain, this ancient theater is also a very important work for Christianity, as it is the place where St. Paul’s sermons took place. Each floor of the theater was added in different periods in parallel with the magnificence of the city.


The Temple of Artemis

The Temple of Artemis, completed in 550 BC, is a very rare and resplendent work dedicated to the Goddess Artemis, built by the Greek Architect Chershpron at the order of the Lydian King Croseus. The temple was made by the most important, famous and talented sculptors of the time. The Temple of Artemis, a structure made of marble and decorated with bronze sculptures, was completely destroyed in a fire in 400 AD, except for the marble blocks. The Temple of Artemis, consisting of a total of 127 columns with a height of 17 meters, is on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Celsus Library

Celsus Polemaeanus Tiberius Julius Aquila, son of Celsus, a wealthy and powerful senator in the Roman Empire, built the Celsus Library in his honor in Ephesus, the Capital of the Asian States, to immortalize his father’s name in the Asian provinces. When Celsus died in 114, he was buried somewhere on the west side of the library being built in his honor. The construction of the library was completed in 117. The Celsus Library is recorded as the third largest library from the Antiquity. It is the most distinctive historical artifact among the archaeological remains in here.

Celsus Library

St. John’s Basilica

Jesus, who was crucified, entrusted his mother Mary to his favorite young apostle John. St. John, who came to Ephesus with Mary from Jerusalem, lived and died here. After the death of St. John, a mausoleum and basilica were built in his memory. Later, the famous Byzantine emperor Justinian and his wife Theodora had the great church, whose ruins still exist today, built in his memory in the 1st century AD.

Cave of the Seven Sleepers

The Cave of the Seven Sleepers is known as the cave where the seven young people in the story of the Seven Sleepers, mentioned in both Islam and Christianity, slept. While it is accepted that the Ahsab-ı Kehf Cave, which is mentioned by Muslims in the Qur’an in the chapter of Kehf, is mostly located in Tarsus or Afşin, the Christian world has adopted this place in Ephesus.

The House of the Virgin Mary

In addition to being a Byzantine church, it is believed that this house, known as the house of the Virgin Mary, lived and died here, the mother of Jesus Christ. It is considered as sacred as the pilgrimage by Muslims, and Christians consider it a religious duty to visit this place. Hz. It is believed that Mary was not alone here and spent the last years of her life with St Jean.

Where is Ephesus?

The Ancient City of Ephesus, which is on the UNESCO World Heritage List, is located in the Selçuk District of İzmir, in the Aegean Region of Turkey. It is located on the Selcuk – Kusadasi road and 83 kilometers from the center of Izmir. It is also 3.5 kilometers from the center of Selçuk district.

Where is Ephesus

How to Get to Ephesus?

You can reach Ephesus by air or road. We have compiled transportation alternatives for you:

How to Get to Ephesus by Air

The closest airport to Ephesus is Adnan Menderes Airport in Izmir. After getting off at the airport, you can rent a car here to go to there. The distance between Adnan Menderes Airport and the Ancient City of Ephesus takes 1.5 hours. Apart from this, there is also possibe transportation by using the Izmir train line (IZBAN). After switching to the train line from the airport, you need to get off at Tepeköy station and transfer to Selçuk direction. As a result of this transfer, you can reach Selcuk district. Then you can use minibuses to go to there.

How to Get to Ephesus by Road

It is also possible to go to the ancient city of Ephesus via the highway. Passengers can go to there with their personal vehicles. Apart from this, it is also possible to got to there by intercity bus from different cities. For this, it is sufficient to take the bus traveling from the intercity buses to Izmir Bus Station. You can come to Selçuk center by buses departing from İzmir Bus Station to Selçuk district. Then you can use the minibuses that go to there.

Another alternative is to provide transportation via Kuşadası. If your location is closer to Kuşadası, you can go to Kuşadası and then take the minibuses that provide transportation to the Ancient City of Ephesus.

How Far is Ephesus from Cappadocia?

The distance between Ephesus and Cappadocia, which is located within the provincial borders of İzmir, is approximately 775 km. The journey time is approximately 9 hours by road.

How to Get from Cappadocia to Ephesus?

Unfortunately, there are no flights between these two points. You will need to use the highway to go from Cappadocia to Ephesus. As we mentioned above, the journey by car takes about 9 hours.

Apart from that, you can reach Ephesus (information above) via İzmir by using the intercity buses that run between Nevşehir and İzmir.

How to Pronounce Ephesus?

The spelling of Ephesus in Turkish is “Efes”. Efes is spelled E-fes. Click on the link to listen how it is pronounced.

Entrance Information to Ephesus

The entrance fee is 120 TL (8€). It is open to visitors every day and audio guide service is also available. The opening and closing times are as follows.

  • Opening Time: 08:30
  • Closing Time: 18:00
  • Box Office Closing Time: 17:00
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