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"Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

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Denver, Colorado
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"Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

We will be 10 days in Istanbul in March, 2012 and would like to take short trip to Ephesus.

What are the options to get to Ephesus? Air, train, bus?

If we fly to Izmir, what are the advantages of having a tour guide meet us at the airport? What are the disadvantages?

If we stay overnight before returning to Istanbul, should we stay in Izmir or another town?

All suggestions are appreciated !

Kayakoy, Turkey
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1. Re: "Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

Hello Edin,

if you are going for 10 days, then İ would absolutely recommend to make a trip out of this. 6 days in İstanbul is a lot, you can really see all the highlights.

The options are either fly to İzmir and then continue to Sulcuk.

By bus the trip takes about 7 to 8 hours. İf you would rent a car you can get there in 4 to 5 hours.

Having a guide inside Ephesus is good, you can hire one at the entry. Then spend a few days in Selcuk, a really lovely town, close to Pamucak beach, close to Şirince, a small village up in the mountains which is a bit of a tourist trap but some find it still worth the visit.

Hope this helps for a a start! Good luck!

Istanbul, Turkey
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2. Re: "Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

If you don't intend to go anywhere else other than Istanbul in these 10 days then I too would say make it a 2 days trip rather than a day trip.

I would also recommend flying as the price for flights and buses are pretty much the same but the time saving immense.Many airlines now have a free shuttle to take you from Izmir airport to Selçuk where you can stay(nicer than Izmir for a visitor).

Take the breakfast flight down and on the first day see Ephesus and other interesting points around Selçuk itself.On the second day you could take a tour down the coast to visit Priene,Miletus and Didyma all of which are interesting historical sites worth seeing.

Alternatively on that second day you could go to Pamukkale instead.This can be reached by bus or train from Selçuk.That evening you can return to Istanbul by plane from nearby Denizli airport.

This would still leave you 8 days to thoroughly explore Istanbul.

Ephesus can be seen alone using one of the audio guides hireable for a small fee from the gate on entrance.The quality of these is quite good.Or you can engage a guide for the day or join a small group tour.

The audio guides would be the cheapest option but of course as good as they may be they can't answer any questions you may have.

A small group tour is an economical option giving you a live guide to answer all your questions whilst not having to share him/her with a huge group of people(small group tours are typically 6-10 people in total,standard group tours can be 35-40!).A private guide is the most expensive option but of course the day can be tailored to exactly your wishes taking in only the sites of most interest to you.They will collect you and return to and from where ever you wish and you have their undivided attention.

You know your travel style and finances and now you have the options available to you.For domestic flights this site is good.Click on the UK flag for English.Bear in mind that schedules for next year haven't come out yet though,you'll need to look mid February onwards for them.But flights on the Ist>>Izm route are always as plentiful and regular as buses.!

http://www.bulucak.com

If you decide to only do a day trip then it is perfectly possible by taking the breakfast flight down and the tea time one back again.For this a guide would be good to help you get the maximum from your time there.

Hope all this is a help to you.☺

Istanbul
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3. Re: "Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

EdinColorado, Welcome to Turkey. You sure can make a day trip to Selcuk/Ephesus from Istanbul. You should take an early flight 7-8.00 AM to Izmir from Ataturk Airport (IST) and return by a late evening flight from Izmir to IST. You can use "www.bulucak.com" for flight schedules and fares. If you use Atlas Jet to fly to Izmir and return, then they have a free transfer bus from Izmir Airport to Selcuk and back.

Otherwise you can take the local train from the Izmir Airport to Selcuk. If you need to stay overnight, then do it at Selcuk. Hotel Bella is a nice hotel used by a lot forum members. You can get a guide for Ephesus at the main entrance. This will be the least expensive guide only for the historical attraction. Have a look: "turkeytravelplanner.com/go/…index.html".

good luck,

enigma...

Table View, South...
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4. Re: "Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

I would second staying over in Selcuk for the night. Apart from Ephesus there is the Ephesus Museum and Saint Johns Basilica in Selcuk that is worth a visit. We stayed in the Akay Hotel which was just fine, it also has a swimming pool. The hotel is within 5 minute walking distance from both.

Şirince you can do if you have 2 hours to waste, although the fruit wines are really good. It is very steep so be prepared to sweat a little.

Denver, Colorado
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5. Re: "Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

Thanks to all.

A one day trip seems pretty hectic. The advice to spend the second day is much appreciated !

Another question. Can we wait until we arrive in Istanbul to make hotel and airplane reservations ? We will be in Istanbul in mid-April, 2012.

Istanbul
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6. Re: "Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

EdinColorado, yes you can wait for reservations till you get to Turkey. However most likely you will get much lower fares for the flights if you make advance reservations.

enigma...

Istanbul, Turkey
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7. Re: "Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

Yes you can wait until you are here.The flight schedules between Istanbul and Izmir are so frequent it is almost like a flying bus schedule.☺Maybe by booking early you'll save a few lira but the prices on that route are so competitive anyway you may as well wait.Plus this will give you more flexibility rather than'locking 'yourselves into a timetable so far in advance.

There are plenty of hotels in Selçuk,do some research beforehand and make a note of the telephone and e mails of those that appeal and then contact them once in Istanbul.

Going to Ephesus on a one day return is actually not as hectic as it sounds and works rather well and many people do this when there time is limited but if you can spend 2 days there so much the better as there is plenty to see and enjoy in the area.

istanbul
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8. Re: "Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

The best way is the plane. If you wil be at the asian side of istanbul Sabiha airport is the airport that you must use. (easier check in and cheaper prices) You can book your flight tickets from www.superbilet.com from istanbul to izmir.

Dubai, United Arab...
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9. Re: "Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

EdinColorado, definitely do two days in Selcuk. We flew by Atlasjet from Istanbul to Izmir and it ran a free shuttle service to Selcuk.

Tried booking air tickets earlier and found that the payment site was not secure. Waited to get to Istanbul and the hotel kindly arranged our booking for us at no extra charge.

Spent some time checking out Enigma and sarikanarya's posts before going to Turkey. This would be a good time to say thank you very much for the info/ advice/ perspective. We loved Turkey and look forward to going back soon

Istanbul, Turkey
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10. Re: "Day trip" from Istanbul to Ephesus

Blush :) You're very welcome,glad you had a great time.Come back soon,there is still lot's to discover in this amazing country.

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