Ephesus Archaeological Museum was closed for renovation for several years; the work was finished early in 2015 and the museum is again open to visitors. The new building is admirably done, the exhibits refined and well displayed, with explanations in Turkish and English.
It houses the best of the archeological objects excavated at Ephesus, a few artifacts from Ephesus's great Temple of Artemis (the Artemision), and finds from some of the many other significant ancient Hellenic, Hellenistic and Roman cities in the region.
The two best finds exhibited in the museum are the marble statues of Artemis. One is from the 1st century AD and the other from the 2nd century AD. Rows of egg-shaped marble pieces on the goddess's chest have been interpreted differently as breasts, eggs, grapes or dates. In 1978 a new interpretation suggested that these pieces on the goddess's chest were bulls' testicles offered to her on feast days as symbols of fertility. Later excavations proved that the bull cult was really important. Similarly to Mother Goddess of Anatolia, she has two feline animals standing next to her.
Head of Socrates is dating back to 4th century BC. Socrates had 2 wives and he was constantly having argument with his first wife who was a very mean woman. Socrates blessed her bachelor friends by saying Get yourselves a wife: if she is good you will be happy, if she is bad, you will become a philosopher.
Main Historical Sites & Destinations Around Izmir & Kusadasi
♦ The Archaeological Museum of Izmir exhibits an impressive collection of pre-Roman and Roman artefacts recovered from area
excavations, including Bergama, Iasos, Bayrakli and Izmir's Agora… more
♦ Ephesus Open Air Museum - contains the largest collection of Roman ruins in the eastern Mediterranean. Only an estimated 15% has been excavated… more
♦ Ephesus Archaeological Museum was reopened in November 2014 after extensive renovations. It houses finds from the nearby
Ephesus excavation site… more
♦ Basilica of St. John was built in the 6th century AD, under emperor Justinian I, over the supposed site of the apostle's tomb. It was
modelled after the now lost Church of the Holy Apostles in Constantinople… more
♦ Temple of Artemis – one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, once stood 137 m x 69 m with 127 marble pillars each 18 m high. The temple earned the city the title Servant of the Goddess… more
♦ The House of Virgin Mary. Located on the top of Nightingale mountain, the House of the Virgin Mary
Turkish: Meryemana), is located in a nature park between Ephesus and Seljuk, and is believed to be the last residence of the Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus. The peaceful site is sacred to both Christians and Muslims, and is visited by many tourists and pilgrims… more
♦ Village of Sirince. Once known as Kirkince, the village was built by the Greeks around 800 years ago and since the population
exchange in 1924 has since been inhabited by Muslims from Thessalonica. Indeed its habitants gave this name on purpose as they did
not want to be bothered by foreigners not to share the beauty of their village.… more
♦ The Site of Ancient Pergamum – City of Science & Satan…? Perched atop a windswept mountain along the Turkish coastline and gazing proudly over the azure Aegean Sea... more
♦ Didyma - Priene - Miletus - the three towns of Priene, Miletus, and Didyma make up part of Ancient Ionia, homeland of many of the ancient world’s greatest artistic and scientific minds, and each endowed with haunting ruins... more
♦ Pamukkale & Ancient Hierapolis. Deriving from springs in a cliff almost 200 m high overlooking the plain of Curuksu in south-west
Turkey, calcite-laden waters have created an unreal landscape, made up of mineral forests, petrified waterfalls and a series of terraced
basins given the name of Pamukkale (Cotton Palace)... more
♦ Aphrodisias is one of the oldest sacred sites in Turkey. The site has been sacred since as early as 5.800 BC, when Neolithic farmers came here to worship the Mother Goddess of fertility and crops... more