Ancient history lovers should try a holiday in Turkey

Added 08/09/2010

Europe on a map

Many lovers of ancient history head to Italy or Greece, but a holiday in Turkey has a lot to offer people that like to immerse themselves in ancient architecture.

In Hisarlik, visit the ancient city of Troy, which was first discovered by an explorer in 1822. Troy must be one of the most famous cities of the ancient world. Meanwhile, the ancient city of Ephesus has been spectacularly preserved, and some believe it offers the best examples of Roman architecture anywhere in the world. Marvel at the Library of Celsus, the great classical theatre, the Temple of Hadrian and the Cave of the Seven Sleepers.

Side is a great little place to enjoy a holiday in Turkey. The 5th century Roman baths, the impressive 2nd century amphitheatre and the Apollon Temple are all well worth a visit. Side is a great holiday resort that combines the old with the new — ideal for holidaymakers that want the best of both worlds.

Istanbul is a fantastic place to immerse yourself in the history and culture of Turkey. The Basilica Cistern is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Istanbul, and it’s the largest surviving cistern in the city. Its deep columned caverns are great for escaping the heat of the day. There’s also the Topkapi Palace, which became a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the Galata Tower, which was once used as a watchtower to protect the city.

Hierapolis is steeped in ancient history and visitors flock to the city’s hot springs. Tourists can enjoy a dip in a hot pool surrounded by ancient artefacts. Carbon overflowing from the hot springs has created a series of white terraces, known collectively as Pamukkale. The effect is a scene of ‘flowing’ white calcium deposits. Also in Hierapolis, you can explore the Temple of Apollo and the Plutonium, a cave that was thought to be an opening into the underworld.

There is so much ancient history to explore that a holiday in Turkey would not be complete without it. Now is a good time of year to visit, when the summer temperatures are starting to cool.