Day 11 (Thu, Sep 25): Cruising / Kusadasi / Ephesus excursion

We spent the morning at leisure on the way to Kusadasi. Had breakfast, then spent the rest of the morning on the Lido deck. We met a couple from Las Vegas named John & Eileen Swete. Had buffet lunch at the Lido Bar with Ross and Robin.

arrival Kusadasiview of Kusadasimap of Kusadasianother view of Kusadasideparture Kusadasi
Kusadasi is the port of entry for Ephesus, from which, like so many ancient ports, the shore has receded. It was a very pretty town. The coast line is very beautiful here. It's the cheeriest looking place we've seen in Turkey. No tenders today. We had the luxury of docking. Made embarcation much quicker. The faded pictures (arrival and departure) were, as mentioned before, taken by the ship's photographers. They took pretty good pictures actually; it's a shame their products were no more permanent than Sun Lines itself (or the Stella Solaris for that matter).

When we got to Ephesus there was some disorganization at the gate. Everyone from the ship descended en masse and had to buy tickets for their cameras. We each ended up with six pieces of paper. Inflation is everywhere. Ephesus was a very handsome place, once among the richest cities in the Roman Empire, capital of the Province of Asia. There is extensive excavation still going on there. Our guide was a Turk named "Ned" who had spent some time in Texas (air force training). Our bus driver was named Ali; acording to Ned, Ali was "the hero wrestler in all these parts" 20 years earlier. On the way back the bus stopped at the roadside and several of us had our pictures taken near a pair of camels.

Ephesus, being an important seaport in the ancient world, had a lower city on the waterfront and an upper city for the citizenry. New arrivals were quarantined below; for two weeks they weren't permitted through the Market Gate adjoining the Library of Celsus.

1. The Gates of Persecution (C4)
2. St John's Basilica (B4)
3. The Byzantine Citadel (A4)
4. Isa Bey Mosque (C4)
5. Temple of Artemis (C4)
6. Gymnasius of Vedius (D3)
7. The Stadium (D3)
8. Koressos Gate (D3)
9. Sanctuary of Mother Goddess Cybele (D4)
10. Acropolis and small temple (D3)
11. Byzantine baths (D3)
12. Double churches (D2)
13. Harbour gymnasium and baths (E2/3)
14. Arcadian Avenue (E1/2/3)
15. Gymnasium of the Theater (E3)
16. The Great theater (E3/F3)
17. Marble road (F3)
18. Celsus Library (F3)
19. The Agora (F3)
20. Temple of Serapis (F2/G2)
21. Curates Street (G3/G4)
22. Brothel (G3/G4)
23. Public Toilets (F3)
24. Baths of Skolastikia (G3/G4)
25. Temple of Hadrian (G3/G4)
26. Auditorium
27. Gate (G3)
28. Fountain (G3)
29. Octagon (G3)
30. Hill houses (G3/4)
31. Trajan Fountain and round tower (G4)
32. Triumphal Arch (G4)
33. Monument of Mainmius and Hydreion (G4)
34. Temple of Domitianus (G4)
35. Fountain of Pollio (G4)
36. Water Palace (G4/H4)
37. Prytaneum (G4)
38. Odeum (G4)
39. Basilica (G4)
40. The State Agora (G4)
41. The Varius Baths (G4)
42. The Nympheum (H4)
43. The tomb of St Luke (H5)
44. Magnesia Gate (H5)
45. The East Gymnasium (G5/6)
46. Walls of Bulbul Dag (G2/H2/3)
47. The cave of seven Sleepers (D4)

Celsus Library (18), with a tunnel to the brothel

gate of Augustus (27) separating upper and lower city (an inscription curses "those who piss here")

Brothel (22) where the statuette of Bes (Priapus) was found

Priapic statuette (copies for sale everywhere in Ephesus)

toilets (23) outside the brothel

We had a get-together with the tour group this evening. During that I played the piano but only managed a few numbers before the ship's band showed up and drowned me out. After dinner we went to the Lido Deck and sat outside and had a beer. Were joined by Valerie Bailey. The rest of the tour group showed up for the "Festive evening at sea: 1001 Nights Dinner and The Masquerade Ball." We didn't participate. In fact, we found ourselves preferring the company of individuals from our group to the "entertainment" provided by the cruise company. I don't think we fit the mold of "American tourist" very well. Too much emphasis on shopping and a making a fool of yourself (or watching others do that). Give us a drink of Metaxa and conversation with Christina anytime. During the evening, about 8:30, we sailed from Turkey, heading for Rhodes.