Turkey is a large country with a long history of ruling empires, prominent civilizations and for this reason many historical ruins. You could say, this country is an amazing treasure chest of history worth of exploring. However, gulet cruise typically last 7 days and offers many things to do, so for starters we collected some of the best sites you should consider adding to your route plan.
Ephesus ancient city
First on the list is Ephesus. This was once a lively Greek city that holds today perfectly preserved Greek and Roman ruins in the Mediterranean. We recommend you walk through its streets of the town and simply enjoy beautiful views. You will feel like you will almost time traveled back in the past. There are many traditional houses, buildings, temples, and stadiums built around the remains of the town you should also check. A trip to Ephesus usually takes at least half and they are always with a guided tour. You can also visit the House of Virgin Mary and the amazing ruins of the ancient city of Ephesus, including the fabulous Terrace Houses. If you also decide to visit the Ephesus Museum you will be able to see artifacts from the ancient city, including scales, jewelry, and cosmetic boxes as well as coins, funerary goods, and ancient statuary.
Definitely doesn’t miss out exploring the cave of Seven Sleepers. The name of this cave originated from the legend that the Romans locked seven Christian boys there in 250 AD, who only awoke in the 5th century. And also stop by the magnificent Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world.
Sunken city of Kekova
The Kekova region is protected from 1990. for the natural, cultural and geographic richness of the Kekova Islands. The area stretches for 260 km² and is managed by the Turkish Ministry of Environment. On the northern side of the island, you will find underwater ruins of Dolchiste, an ancient Lycian settlement. This marvelous historic site is only accessible by water. Even though swimming is forbidden around the sunken ruins, you can still admire them and take a few photos. Swimming is forbidden due to the fact that many visitors in past would take parts of the remains as souvenirs.
Historical Ruins of the Lycian Way
Lycian way has a big collection of ancient ruins scattered from Antalya to Fethiye that can be interesting for families with kids too. On the World UNESCO heritage list, Xanthos and Letoon are placed and we definitely recommend you check these places out. Nearby Tlos isn’t as crowded with mass tourism but it is well recommended to go to this place for its Lycian tombs. Further, along with the coastline on the outskirts of the Antalya district, is the theatre and Lycian rock tombs of Myra that is also close to Demre and the church of Saint Nicholas (Santa Claus.) The settings of Olympos in a dense, overgrown forest promote a surreal fairy-tale setting, because of the unknown sarcophagus of Captain Euromos. It would take two months of walking to see all the historical ruins of the Lycian way, or a unique way to travel is on a gulet cruise from Fethiye to Olympos.
Church of Saint Nicholas
Previously mentioned ancient Myra tombs and ruins can be combined with a trip to the home of Santa Claus, otherwise known as St Nicholas Church. As a former bishop of the town, locals very much appreciated his honorable deeds. He is also known as the protector of all sailors providing the calm sea for all who travel. For this reason, the church was built and the church today holds his sarcophagus. However, his remains were stolen by Italian soldiers in the 11th century.
Bodrum Castle, aka the Castle of St. Peter is a magnificent site you can’t miss when visiting Bodrum. This eye-catching castle was built from the 15th century and is overlooking the harbor and the marina. Today it serves as a world-class Museum of Underwater Archaeology, but there are also many other things to do there. The castle is open to the public and is well worth visiting.