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Is Ephesus a "Must See" On a 9 Day Turkey Visit?

Reno, Nevada
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51 posts
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Is Ephesus a "Must See" On a 9 Day Turkey Visit?

Hello all, my sister and I will be visiting Turkey in March. We have 9 days in Turkey but we've already booked a 3 day/2 night tour to Cappadocia, leaving us only 5.5 days in Istanbul. We are wondering if we should use one of those full days for a trip to Ephesus? My sister has never seen Roman ruins and we have heard and read that Ephesus is amazing, but we don't want to rush through Istanbul and fit everything into 4 days if Ephesus is not a "must see."

Thanks for any insight you can give us!

Kayakoy, Turkey
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for Istanbul
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1. Re: Is Ephesus a "Must See" On a 9 Day Turkey Visit?

İt is a very interesting site, though İ would never force somebody to go there :-)

İt is a bit out of your planned itinerary. But İ think seen the time, you can easy skip one day of İstanbul and fit Ephesus in. You will be surely pleased, and leaving 4 days for İstanbul gives you still a lot of time to see the main sites.

The only alternative İ could suggest it to travel from Cappadocia to Denizli/Pamukkale and see the travertines and combine that with Aphrodisias. Also a Roman site of great interest but less visited as it is off track.

Hope this helps!

Dubai, United Arab...
4 posts
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2. Re: Is Ephesus a "Must See" On a 9 Day Turkey Visit?

HI, I too am going through the same dilemma. I along with my wife and daughter are planning a tour in late March for 7 days. I have been gathering info about places to visit in Turkey during the last week.

I am sure about Istanbul and Cappadocia (they have frequent direct flights between these 2 places). I think 3 days can be easily spent in Istanbul (city tour on day 1, Bosphorus tour on day 2 and Princess Island tour on day 3). Take an evening flight to Kayseri (Cappadocia) and the next 2 days should be enough to experience Cappadocia.

Now the issue with Ephesus as far as my research goes is that, there are few direct flights between Kayseri and Izmir (Ephesus), most of the flights are via Istanbul, which consume a major part of the day time and you end up doing nothing else on that whole day. Apart from this, The Temple of Artemis which is one of the seven wonders of the world, does have very little to show that it belonged to this category. Only Pamukkale sounds interesting in this region with its natural features. Experts, please correct me if I am wrong, it will help me as well.

For me, there is no option in addition to Istanbul and Cappadocia (may be I will stay 1 additional day in Cappadocia). But in your case, you have 2 extra days, so you can do the Ephesus tour easily if you are interested in historic ruins or head to Antalya for a more of a relaxing outing. I somehow feel that the whole Ephesus tour is over-hyped as there is nothing much you can gather from photographs and articles compared to Istanbul and Cappadocia, but who knows, you can experience a place only if you visit it. Wish you all the best.

United States
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3. Re: Is Ephesus a "Must See" On a 9 Day Turkey Visit?

I was in Turkey in September 2012. First, I fell in love with it. Second, I saw ruins and more ruins and got to the point where ruins almost became a bit ho-hum! I loved Perge much more than Ephesus, but Efes was at the very end of a 3-week trip and perhaps I was a bit weary of the ruins. And the crowds were much smaller at Perge. However, if you are going to see only one ruin, I'd suggest Ephesus. Walk the route that starts at the top of the hill and does down towards the Library of Celsus. In Istanbul, I would skip the Prince's Islands trip - I took the ferry there and we had lunch and a carriage ride and a small walkabout, a quiet day after several busy touring days in Istanbul - but not much else to see/do. There is so much to see in Istanbul - I think you need more time there. I highly recommend (in addition to the big three) Suleymanye Mosque, the Kariye Museum, and yes, go to a hamman for a turkish bath! I also wish I had had more time to see Topkapi. It was very crowded when I was there, and I just wanted to be able to linger and absorb. I did not make it to the top of the Galata Tower and wish I had. A Bosphorous boat trip is lovely and relaxing.

Reno, Nevada
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51 posts
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4. Re: Is Ephesus a "Must See" On a 9 Day Turkey Visit?

Thanks for your help Villa and WhereToNext. We have many places we want to explore in Istanbul, plus we want plenty of time to relax, people watch, and enjoy the nargile, so I'm thinking we might skip Ephesus.

5. Re: Is Ephesus a "Must See" On a 9 Day Turkey Visit?

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