Visit world-renowned Ephesus and then discover the charming village of Sirince on this one-of-a-kind tour that concludes with a luncheon of fresh fish that you have personally chosen.
You will begin your excursion with a pleasant drive through the countryside, en route to the small town of Selcuk. Along the way, there will be a brief stop for photos at the remains of the once magnificent, Artemis Temple which is renowned for being one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Its massive foundation can still be seen today after nearly 3 millennia. The town of Selcuk itself is home to the 6th century Basilica of St. John the Apostle, which many believe was built on the site of the Apostle's tomb. Following a short orientation tour of the town, you will proceed to Ancient Ephesus.
Ephesus is one of the most beautiful and classical ancient cities in the world, on par with Rome and Athens in scope, quality and feel. St. Paul, St. John and the Virgin Mary, have all been known for having spent time in this first and greatest metropolis of Asia. Other notables who have been connected to Ephesus include rich, old Croesus, General Lysimachus and the Emperor Hadrian. The city was an important Greek trading city of Ionia, and later a Roman provincial capital. One of the most well-known residents was St. Paul who lived here for 3 years in the 0060's AD, when the city is alleged to have had a population of nearly 250,000. It was here that he wrote one of his most famous epistles as a letter to the Ephesians. The ruins of Ephesus are vast and extraordinary and for those who like to take a step back into time, there are few places in the world better to do so.
Following a memorable visit to Ephesus, you will travel to picturesque Sirince Village with its red-tiled, old wooden houses. Home today to just over 800 permanent residents, the name of Sirince means "loveliness" and Sirince truly lives up to its name. Surrounded by numerous vineyards and orchards, this traditional Ottoman village (a former Greek Village) produces its own potent wines, which you will no doubt be invited to try as you walk the cobbled, well-preserved streets lined with half-timbered mansions. A brief guided tour gives you a good overview of the village and then you will have free time to further explore this delightful gem of a town on your own. You may want to sample the local fruit wine produced here or purchase lace pieces that are hand-made by local women.
Re-joining your coach, you will drive back to Kusadasi where you will stop at the Kusadasi Fish Market and select your own fresh fish that will be prepared for your lunch. From there, it's a short walk to one of Kusadasi's best seafood restaurants. As you relax and wait for the fish you chose earlier to be prepared and served as your main course, you will enjoy tasty starter dishes.
After lunch, the choice is yours to return directly to the ship, or remain in town to explore on your own or purchase a souvenir.
Please note: This tour includes approximately 90-minutes of moderate walking, plus any walking at the guests' discretion during free time. There is uneven terrain and several steps at the visited sites, as well as cobblestone surfaces to negotiate. The tour is not available to wheelchair guests and those with mobility concerns are cautioned to carefully evaluate their personal level of stamina and ability. Weather-appropriate clothing; a hat; sunglasses and flat, comfortable walking shoes with a non-slip sole are recommended.