See the Well Preserved Ruins Steeped in History on a Tour to Miletus

Miletus, located near the coast of western Turkey and was once one of the most influential cities of the ancient Greek world, but eventually declined because of the silting up of its harbours. It is hard to imagine that Miletus was once situated on a peninsula, with three harbours on the west side and one to the east. Today, the harbours have silted up to such an extent that the ruins of Miletus are located in a broad plain 5 miles inland. St. Paul made a stop at Miletus on his third missionary journey, on his way back to Jerusalem. There are many well-preserved ruins to be seen at the site while on daily tours to Miletus, including a Temple of Apollo, a Byzantine church, and an important inscription relating to Jews.  Read More...

See the Well Preserved Ruins Steeped in History on a Tour to Miletus

Take a private tour of Miletus which in ancient times was situated on the coast at on the River Meander with four harbours on the west coast of Asia Minor. that made it a significant player in the commerce of the ancient world. It was repeatedly captured by envious invaders until Miletus eventually, met its fate, not at the hands of foreign powers but the gentle Meander River, which silted up over the centuries. Miletus prospered and grew wealthy from colonies on the Mediterranean, the Black Sea and even in Egypt and became the most important of the 12 cities of Ionia and was one of the first cities to mint coins in the ancient world. The Persians destroyed Miletus in 499 BC, and Ephesus surpassed Miletus as the most crucial city in the region. But Miletus was rebuilt, and its streets were laid out according to the plan of Miletus native Hippodamus and inventor of the "Hippodamian grid."

An excellent place to start your guided tour of Miletus is from a ruined Byzantine castle on a hill behind the theatre. This provides a good view of the widely scattered ruins and the original coastline around Miletus (which can only be seen from up here). The city walls were massive and more than 30 feet thick in places but were stormed by Alexander the Great in his conquest of the city. In St. Paul's time, Miletus had two main harbours, and the Theater Harbour was where the original Cretan inhabitants settled. Below the Byzantine, the castle is a Hellenistic heroon, a monumental tomb to honour a local hero who was deified. On the side of the rounded tomb chamber are 5 tiny niches to carry the remains of relations. In the centre of the tomb's floor is a rectangular hole for sacrifices which can be seen on best Miletus tours.

Explore the theatre on a tour to Miletus which is large, with a facade of 460 ft (140 m) and a present height of 100 ft (30 m) high. It was at first built in the fourth century BC however changed and enlarged beneath Emperor Marcus Ulpius Traianus within the second century AD to seat 25,000 spectators. Also, another addition within the Roman period was the 3rd floor to the stage building, which was decorated with columns and hunting scenes with Eros. In the theatre is a meaningful inscription. On the fifth row of seats are the words (in Greek): "For the Jews and the God-fearers." Paths from the theatre lead to the extensive Baths of Faustina, built on the orders of the wife of Marcus Aurelius in 164 AD. The large complex features beautiful water fountains in the shape of the river god Meander and a small lion, and niches in the "Hall of the Muses" that once held statues of Apollo, Asclepius, Telesphorus, the 9 Muses and a head of Aphrodite.

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