Priene, Miletus and Didyma Private Tour
- 8 Hours
- Private Tour
- All Year Round
Are you ready to take a journey through history and explore some of Turkey’s most incredible ancient sites? Join us on the Didyma Tour from Kusadasi and discover the rich cultural heritage of the region.
Priene, Miletus and Didyma Tour from Kusadasi
Your journey begins with a pick-up from your hotel in Kusadasi or Selcuk and a drive south through the Turkish province of Aydin. As you travel through time to the ancient city of Ionia, you’ll make stops at three of the region’s most fascinating sites: Priene, Miletus, and Didyma.
First up is Priene, an ancient Ionian town known for being one of the first cities in Anatolia to follow a strict street plan. Here, you’ll see the remains of the main city square (agora), the theatre, and the bouleuterion – the building where the democratic council of citizens would meet.
Next, you’ll visit the ruins of Miletus, considered to be one of the greatest and wealthiest Ancient Greek cities. As you explore its theatre, temples, and other public buildings, you’ll learn about the iconic figures who frequented this historic site, such as Thales of Miletus.
Finally, you’ll head to Didyma, where you’ll enjoy a traditional lunch in a local restaurant before visiting the iconic Temple of Apollo. This temple, known for its oracle, was one of the world’s great temples dedicated to the deity.
After exploring these ancient sites, you’ll return to Kusadasi or Selcuk, having gained a deeper understanding and appreciation of Turkey’s rich cultural heritage.
Please note that this tour involves walking approximately 2.5 miles over uneven and cobblestone surfaces, and includes inclines and over 100 steps at Priene. Comfortable shoes, a hat, and plenty of sunscreens are recommended as shade is limited. The order of the tour itinerary may vary in order to avoid congestion. Guests should watch their step at all times in order to avoid injuries. Due to the nature of this tour, it is not recommended for guests with walkers or wheelchairs.
This private tour is perfect for small groups of friends or family, and the price listed is based on a per-person rate for a minimum of four adults participating in the tour. This indicates that if there are fewer or higher than four adults, the cost may be different. You can fill out the inquiry form to get your customized itinerary and rates.
Pick-up from your hotel.
09:30Priene Ancient City
Priene is an ancient city with a rich and storied history dating back to 2000 BC. According to historical records, the first settlers of Priene were the Banians, who mixed with the Ionians. In the Archaic period, the city was located closer to Miletus on the delta of the Meander River, but it eventually moved to the slopes of the Mykale Mountains.
The name “Priene” is thought to have a pre-Greek origin, possibly stemming from the Cretan islands of Praises and Prison, which had connections to Priene. Despite becoming one of the 12 members of the Ionian Confederation and participating in the Ionian Rebellion, Priene was a Lydian dominion for many centuries.
Around 283 BC, a border dispute arose between Priene and the Greek island of Samos. It wasn’t resolved until a century later, when both parties agreed to become Roman vassals. As a result, Priene came under the control of the Bergamian King Attalos II, who agreed to return the city to the Romans after his death.
Unfortunately, Priene was eventually worn down and abandoned in the 8th century AD due to ongoing wars and alluviums that invaded the city. Today, it stands as a testament to its rich history and serves as a reminder of the city’s significant place in the ancient world.
11:00Miletus Ancient City
Miletus is an ancient city located in Ionia, north of Soke, about 60 km from Selcuk. It was situated on the point where the Meander River flowed into the Aegean Sea, and it had several different harbors due to increasing sedimentation. These harbors can still be seen today.
Miletus was home to many renowned scientists and philosophers, including Thales, Anaximander, Hecataeus (the principal source for Herodotus), and Isidorus, the architect of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul. The city’s alphabet was also recognized by the Greek world as the official Greek alphabet, which became the basis for the current Latin alphabet.
In 200 BC, Miletus became a Mycenaean dominion, as evidenced by the style of ceramics found in the city’s houses and walls. During the Roman Empire, it became an independent city and later a bishopric during early Christian times. During the Byzantine period, Miletus was known as “Ania.” However, due to geographic and climatic changes, the city lost its importance and was eventually abandoned.
Today, the most significant monuments to be seen in Miletus are the Bath of Faustina, the Delphinion (a small temple dedicated to Apollo Delphinion, protector of ships and harbors), and the amphitheater. These ancient sites offer a glimpse into the city’s rich history and cultural significance.
You’ll have the opportunity to witness the skilled craftsmanship that goes into each carpet, from the selection of the materials to the intricate weaving techniques used to bring the design to life. The process is both time-honored and highly skilled, with each carpet taking weeks or even months to complete.
As you learn about the history and cultural significance of Turkish carpets, you’ll gain a greater appreciation for the art form and the hard work that goes into each and every piece. Whether you’re a collector or simply an admirer of beautiful handcrafted textiles, this tour is sure to be a highlight of your trip to Turkey.
13:30Didyma Ancient City
As a natural continuation of your tour of Priene and Miletus, a visit to Didyma is a must. This temple, dedicated to Apollo, was famous for its oracles and was considered the wealthiest and largest of the Ionian temples on Anatolian soil. Its construction took over 150-200 years and was planned to be without a ceiling.
After the Ionian Rebellion, it was Alexander the Great who ordered its restoration. During the Byzantine period, a church was built on the ruins of the 6th century BC temple, though much of what remains today dates back to the pre-Christian age.
The temple’s oracles were renowned throughout the Greek world and even surpassed the reputation of Delphi. As a result, the harbor of Panamos near Didyma became a popular destination for people seeking to learn their future from the temple’s priests. After the Lade War, many of the priests were killed or fled, and the temple lost its importance until the Roman era. Today, it stands as a testament to its rich history and cultural significance.
16:00 Return Back
After the tour, transfer back to your hotel. The tour ends with good memories.
How can I change the tour itinerary?
Customizable itineraries where you may choose sightseeings as per your taste & comfort. The tour program listed is representative and may completely change to suit your wishes. Feel free to say hello to us!
What is the difference between Private and Regular SIC Tours?
Private tours only include your group, your guide, and your driver. We offer the most personalized and intimate experience for you and your friends/family in a private tour! Regular SIC tours stand for Seat-in-Coach Basis Tours, which means you will share an air-conditioned coach or van with other tourists and you will have an English-speaking tour guide to take you to all the scenic spots listed in the itinerary that day. While the prices of private tours may vary according to the number of people, the prices of regular tours are fixed.
What languages are available for tours?
Our private tours are operated in English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, and Japanese. Feel free to contact us for any other languages.