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Library of Celsus

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Library of Celsus: Our most recommended tours and activities

From Izmir: Full-Day Ephesus Tour

1. From Izmir: Full-Day Ephesus Tour

Start with a pickup from your hotel in Izmir. Then, the discovery of Ephesus begins with the House of the Virgin Mary and a 10-minute drive to the ancient city of Ephesus. Explore the city by walking on the marble streets, accompanied by a guide. See the Odeon, State Agora, the Pretension, the Memmius Monument, the Domitian Temple, Hercules Gate, Curetes Street, Hadrian Temple, and the Latrines. Choose to take an optional visit to the terrace houses for an additional cost. After the terrace houses, carry on with your exploration with the Celsus Library, Marble Road, Commercial Agora, Great Theater, and Arcadian (harbor road). Enjoy a nice lunch served in a quaint local restaurant. Visit the Temple of Artemis. Here, there will be a good chance to take gorgeous pictures of the church of St. John and the Mosque of İsa Bey. Enjoy free time in the old village of Sirince to discover the traditional houses, the fruit-flavored wine production, and enjoy some wine tasting. End the day with a transfer back to Izmir airport or to your hotel in Izmir.

Ephesus Entry Ticket with Mobile Phone Audio Tour

2. Ephesus Entry Ticket with Mobile Phone Audio Tour

Founded by the Greeks and conquered by the Romans, Ephesus was once a city of proverbial wealth. It was a bustling port which over time developed into an important center for Christianity. On this self-guided tour, benefit from skip-the-line entry then explore using your smartphone to travel back in time to the city’s former life. The tour is the perfect way to experience the site in a fun and insightful way, and gain valuable insight into one of the most popular places in Turkey. The first stop of the day is to the State Agora, which was once the political heart of the city boasting a lavish square. Continue on to Bouleuterion, and discover the meeting point of the city council which perhaps was also a space for artistic performances. As you stroll around the colonnades, stoas, and other buildings, listen to fascinating stories about what life was like here for locals. Arrive at the Temple of Domitian and find out the rather unusual architectural layout of the U-shaped altar. Next, wander down the Curetes which connected the political and commercial hearts of Ephesus. Uncover the legend of the emperor’s fountain, then explore the large complex of baths at the Scolastica including the lavish marble latrines. Head to the grave of the Egyptian princess Arsinoe, then marvel at the mesmerizing Celsus Library, which is probably the most famous landmark of Ephesus. From here the road leads you to the gate of Mazeus and Mithridates, and onto at the Grand Theatre where performances and gladiatorial games took place. Last but not least, walk through the crossroads of the Arcadiane and follow a small path that leads you to the spectacular ruins of the enormous Church of Mary.

From Izmir, Kusadasi, & Selcuk: Day Trip to Explore Ephesus

3. From Izmir, Kusadasi, & Selcuk: Day Trip to Explore Ephesus

Enjoy a memorable day seeing the historic sights in the ancient city of Ephesus on this day trip. Select from options to leave from your hotel in Izmir, Kusadasi, or Selcuk. Stop at highlights like Hercules Gate, the Temple of Hadrian, and Domitian Square. Be picked up from the comfort of your accommodation. Sit back and relax on the drive to Ephesus. Follow your local guide to the House of Virgin Mary, where the religious figure is thought to have spent her last days. Head to upper Agora which was the seat of political power in the past. Continue to the 2nd century A.D. Odeon theater. Head to Domitian Square and view the engravings on the old columns at the Temple of Domitian. Pass by the Fountain of Pollio. Admire the relief of Hercules at Hercules Gate before going to the temple and fountain of Emperor Trajan.  Marvel at the elaborately carved arch at the Temple of Hadrian. Stroll by the Roman baths, public latrine, marketplace, and brothel. See the stunning remains of the third-largest library in the Roman world at the Library of Celsus. Go to The Great Theater, a massive Hellenistic structure. Gaze upon one of the wonders of the ancient world at the Temple of Artemis. Return to your accommodation. During the tour, you'll have the chance to have a look at the traditional Turkish handcrafts.

Ephesus and Pamukkale: Day Trip by Plane from Istanbul

4. Ephesus and Pamukkale: Day Trip by Plane from Istanbul

Travel back in time on a guided tour from Istanbul to the ancient cities of Ephesus and Hierapolis. Spend a full day marveling at ancient, multi-cultural architecture and monuments without worrying about any of the details of traveling and organizing.  Start your day with pickup from your hotel in Istanbul in the early morning and transfer smoothly to the airport to catch your flight to Izmir. Be greeted upon your arrival and travel to Ephesus to meet with your guide. Explore this iconic former-Greek city, built in the 10th century, famed for its temples, monuments, and theaters. Known as the commercial, religious, and social center of antiquity, this is sure to be the highlight to your whole visit to Turkey. Discover the city’s combination of Greek, Roman and Byzantine markers of civilization. Visit the Fountains of Trajan, Polio, the Temples of Hadrian and Domition, and the Library of Celcius. Be awed by the the Great Theater with its capacity for 24,000 spectators, the Temple of Artemis, and the House of the Virgin Mary. Continue to Pamukkale which is known for its natural thermal spring waters.  Find out why this site is known as the cotton castle as you see how the chemical properties of the water have formed pure white colored travertines and stepped water terraces that line the mountain’s slope, resembling piles of cotton. Visit the ancient city of Hierapolis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The highlight of this site is be the Sacred Pool, which you can enter if you choose. There, shallow thermal waters ripple over a wonderful scattering of ancient Roman ruins that lie beneath. Head to the Necropolis of Hierapolis which contains 1200 gravestones, including that of Marcus Aurelius Ammianos. After your tour, transfer back to Denizli Airport for your evening flight back to Istanbul and be transferred back to your hotel.

From Istanbul: 2-Day Ephesus, Pamukkale, & Hierapolis Tour

5. From Istanbul: 2-Day Ephesus, Pamukkale, & Hierapolis Tour

Discover the ancient cities of Ephesus and Hierapolis on this two-day trip from Istanbul. Explore the ancient city of Ephesus where you can see the Temple of Artemis. Experience the beauty of the natural white terraces created by mineral deposits at the hot springs in Pamukkale. Stay overnight in the town of Selcuk or Kusadasi. Treat yourself to breakfast at the hotel. Try authentic Turkish food with lunch at two local restaurants during your tours. Day 1: Be picked from your accommodation in Istanbul and relax on the drive to the airport. Enjoy a comfortable flight to the city of Izmir. Meet your guide at the airport and drive to the tour provider's office in the town of Selcuk. Take a break with lunch in a local restaurant. Continue to the archeological site at Ephesus to start your guided tour. Walk through the ancient streets and see one of the wonders of the ancient world at the Temple of Artemis. View the façade of one of the largest libraries from Roman times at the Library of Celsus. Stop at the House of the Virgin Mary where the religious figure is said to have spend her last days. See the remains of an old Roman Amphitheater. Learn about these ruins from your local guide. Drive to your hotel in Selcuk or Kusadasi where you can rest for the evening. Day 2: In the morning, be picked up by your guide from your hotel. Enjoy the scenic Turkish countryside on the drive to Pamukkale. Hear about area and culture from your guide. Have a delicious lunch at a local restaurant before starting your tour of the ruins of Hierapolis. Stroll to the remains of a massive Roman amphitheater that once held an audience of 15,000. Admire the marble staircase at the Greek Temple of Apollo. Watch as your guide points out all the significant structures in the archeological site of Hierapolis. Take off your shoes and walk along the white terraces of Pamukkale. Dip your feet in the natural hot springs. Swim amid the ruins of a temple in Cleopatra's Pool. Have some free time in the afternoon to explore on your own. Take it easy on the ride back to the airport where you can catch your flight back to Istanbul. Once you arrive in Istanbul, your driver will be waiting to transfer you back to your accommodation in Istanbul.

From Istanbul: Ephesus and Pamukkale 2-Day Trip

6. From Istanbul: Ephesus and Pamukkale 2-Day Trip

Discover the wonders of Ephesus and Pamukkale on a 2-day trip from Istanbul. Take guided tours and learn interesting facts about Turkey's ancient sites. Stay over night in Kusadasi or Selcuk. Day 1: Flight to Izmir and Ephesus Tour Your trip begins with an early morning pickup from your hotel in Istanbul to catch the flight to Izmır. When you land at Izmir Airport, your driver will take you to Selcuk. Meet your guide and to start exploring Ephesus at the House of Virgin Mary. Tour the shrine and learn about its religious significance before heading to lunch. After lunch visit the Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of antiquity. Have the chance to take pictures of the Church of St. John and TheIsa Bey Mosque. Then head to Sirince, situated on the hills of Selcuk, and have free time to explore its traditional homes and check out local wine production. Take the opportunity to taste the fruit flavored wines. The first day of your trip concludes in the late afternoon when you will be taken to Selcuk or Kusadasi near the seaside. Day 2: Pamukkale and Flight to Istanbul The second day of your trip starts with breakfast at your hotel. Your driver will then pick you up to take you to Pamukkale. Arrive in Pamukkale and see why it was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site as both a Natural Site and an Ancient City. Famous for hot springs believed to have healing powers and its travertines, tour Pamukkale and learn what created this impressive sight. From Pamukkale head into the ancient city of Hierapolis, a settlement of different cults and cultures throughout history. Learn about the city's long and interesting history where its name comes from. After your tour, you will be taken to Denizli Airport for your flight back to Istanbul. From the airpot you will be taken back to your hotel.

Selcuk: Private Ephesus and House of Virgin Mary Tour

7. Selcuk: Private Ephesus and House of Virgin Mary Tour

Your guide and driver will welcome you at the reception of the hotel or Kusadasi Port and drive early in the morning to beat the crowds and first drive to the Virgin Mary's House; afterwards, we visit Ephesus which was the second largets city of Roman Empire. Strolling through the streets of Ephesus, will visit the Fountain of Traian, the temple of Hadrian and the Library of Celsus . Visiting the Terrace Houses wil be the highlight of the day: A number of living units where the rich and the dignitary of Ephesus with the most beautiful ground mosaics, frescoes, terra cotta pipe lines and private baths. Later in the afternoon will visit St. John Basilica, believed to be the tomb of the Apostle John, Christ"s beloved disciple. The remaining of artemis Temple can be seen from the top of St. John.

From Istanbul: Cappadocia, Ephesus, & Pamukkale Private Tour

8. From Istanbul: Cappadocia, Ephesus, & Pamukkale Private Tour

See Istanbul, Cappadocia, Izmir, Ephesus, Pamukkale, and Hierapolis. Enjoy pre-selected hotels, with breakfast and lunch included. Choose your own spot for supper and explore a bit on your own. Day 1: Istanbul To Cappadocia by Plane; Full-Day Tour of Southern CappadociaEnjoy pick-up from your hotel to the airport for a one-hour flight to Cappadocia. Upon arrival at Cappadocia, meet your guide at the airport who will have your name on a sign. Relax while your guide transfers you to the tour office in Goreme. Next, depart for a full-day tour of Southern Cappadocia. See Pidgeon Valley, the Underground City of Kaymakli, the continue along the countryside to the Kızılcukur Valley. Visit Selime Monastery before returning to your hotel.  Day 2: Cappadocia To Izmir; North TourBe picked up from your hotel after breakfast and depart for a full-day exploration of North Cappadocia. Visit Goreme Open Air Museum, Cavusin Vallage, Monsk Valley, Devrent, and the towns of Urgup, Ortahisar and Avanos. Return to your hotel in Cappadocia before leaving for your transfer to the airport for the flight to Izmir. Upon arrival in Izmir, you will be met at the airport once again with your name and you will be delivered to the next hotel in Kusadası. Day 3: Full-day Ephesus TourLeave your hotel after breakfast and depart for Ephesus. See the Temple of Artemis, one of the 7 Ancient Wonders of the World. Visit the biggest amphitheater and the Celsius Library. Tour around ruins left from the ancient city, and see the House of the Virgin Mary, thought to be her last dwelling. At the end of the tour enjoy a transfer back to the hotel. Relax and explore Kusadasi at your own pace with free time in the evening. Day 4: Tour of Pamukkale and The Ancient City of Hierapolis; Flight Back To IstanbulBe picked up from your hotel after breakfast and depart for a full-day Pamukkale and Hierapolis tour. Visit the Old Gates, the cemetery, and the theatre of Hierapolis (part of the James Bond film shoot).  Take in the waterfall known as Travertines, and swim in the calcified pools made famous by Cleopatra. At the end of the tour sit back as you are delivered to the airport for a short flight back to Istanbul.

Kusadasi: Full-Day Ephesus Tour

9. Kusadasi: Full-Day Ephesus Tour

Your tour will begin as you are picked up from your accommodation between 8:30AM and 9:00AM in the morning. From there your first stop will be to the House of Virgin Mary, which is speculated to be the place where Mary spent her final days. The site was officially declared a shrine of the Roman Catholic Church in 1986, and has since become a popular place of pilgrimage. Your tour will then proceed to Ephesus. Ephesus is an exceptional testimony to the cultural traditions of the Hellenistic, Roman Imperial, and early Christian periods. It is an important site for Christianity; being one of the seven Churches of Revelation. Over the space of two hours you will explore the city by walking on the marble streets accompanied by an English-speaking tour guide. Throughout your tour you will see Odeon, State Agora, Prytaneion, Memmius Monument, Domatian Temple, Hercules Gate, Curetes Street, Hadrian Temple, and Latriens. Following the Terrace Houses you will carry on with some exploration of the Celsus Library, Marble Road, Commercial Agora, Great Theather, and Arcadiane. Following lunch you will carry on with a visit to the Temple of Artemis; which is one of the "Seven Wonders of Antiquity". Finally, you will visit Sirince, which is an old village situated on the hills of Selcuk 7 kilometers from Ephesus. The village is popular for beautiful traditional houses and fruit-flavored wine production, and you will have a free time there for some wine tasting if you wish. Your tour will later conclude at around 4:30PM, at which point you will be transferred back to your hotel.

Selçuk: Ephesus & Terrace Houses Guided Walking Tour

10. Selçuk: Ephesus & Terrace Houses Guided Walking Tour

Explore the most famous Roman site in Turkey with its Terrace Houses in the company of an expert guide. The ancient city of Ephesus is one of the oldest sites being excavated in Turkey. Learn about its history and archaeological studies. Visit the Terrace Houses to understand the daily lives of ordinary Roman citizens. Experience the glamour of Rome as you gain an insight into the days of its zenith. Walk with your guide on the ancient roads of Ephesus. Discover Ephesus’s ancient walls scattered throughout the site as you learn how layered this city’s history is. See the famous Theatre at Ephesus and the reconstructed marvel of the Library of Celsus. Stroll past massive Roman pillars, city walls, and towers down to the harbor. Explore the vast remains of Ephesus as your guide talks about Greek mythology on the western coast of present-day modern Turkey. Understand the value of Greek culture shared between the shores of the Aegean Sea on the development of European civilization, arts, and literature. Stop at the theatre and dive into the history of this picturesque coastline to gain an understanding of the role of these little cities in Christianity. Learn how the locals reacted to St. Paul’s journey and how Virgin Mary ended up at this site traveling through the Middle East. End your tour after a detailed brief that completes the journey of the Virgin Mary at Ephesus. Learn about the spread of Christianity starting with the original inhabitants of this scenic and strategically-placed ancient city. Return with a deep knowledge of the Roman and Christian history of modern Turkey.

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What people are saying about Library of Celsus

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 118 reviews

Our tour guide, Ilker Olccaydu, made this excursion the best one we had for this vacation at any of our ports. He reached out to me before arriving at the port of Kusadasi and ensured me that he would be waiting for us upon arrival, which true to his word, he was standing at the entrance door with a Big smile. His personality put us all at ease and we felt completely safe and secure with him at our side. He had such a rapport with all the staff at each location we visited as they joked amongst themselves. We were feeling like family by the end of the tour. This tour guide was one of the best I have had in the 40 years I have been traveling. He is a great ambassador for his country and we are now discussing on revisiting in the near future.

This was a fantastic tour! We were picked up on time from our Airbnb in Izmir and were dropped off with the tour group. Our guide was incredibly knowledgeable and directed us to a number of amazing locations in Ephesus and the surrounding area. I would 100% recommend and would absolutely do it again.

Great tour. There were multiple groups so we switched vehicles and groups at certain points, however we visited the popular tourist points on the checklist and were well educated on the history. They did try to sell us some leather jackets tho that was awkward.

It was excellent Tour , specially Tour Guide Nizam was well informed and was great guide overall. Comfortable ride through out. Highly recommend it.

Volkan was a great guide. Very knowledgable with perfect English. Excellent tour!!!