This was the second of 3 tours we organised via Cruise Critic peers. Our guide was Tan, and he was fabulous. I was particularly impressed because not only was he good with his historic knowledge, he was a good guide logisitically. He anticipated needs and possible problems and always gave us 3 or 4 important tips at each stop before we started, including clear instructions on when and where we would meet, toilet facilities and any other special information that would ensure an enjoyable unhindered tour for everyone. He paid particular attention to getting our group into shaded areas for each of his talks, an important point at Ephesus as so much of it is exposed out in the sun.
The van was clean and comfortable and air-conditioned. We visited Ephesus, the Terrace houses (a must, don't miss these, they are the highlight of the Ephesus site and if you don't see these, you haven't seen Ephesus IMHO), the house of the Virgin Mary, and the Basilica of John the Baptist, plus of course some excursions through the towns that lie in between these. There was also the one remaining pillar of the Temple of Artemis but as it stands sadly alone in a paddock of weeds it is a rather feeble hurrah to say you have seen it.
An absolute highlight though was our Ottoman lunch. Sadly I don't recall the name of the restaurant but it was out in the country and we had a smorgasbord of goodies and it was all delicious.
I think the guide did a great job and covered everything really well and allocated time well to each place. A most enjoyable day.
had a great tour guide with Zee. She customized the tour to our levels of interest and gave us options on shopping on what we were interested in. This allowed us to avoid the lines at Ephesus and the House of Virgin Mary from the huge tour groups. We had a great meal at a local restaurant. We just needed to tell her more our spending levels as we did go to a leather shop with ridiculously high prices for our tastes, but I'm sure there were more options if we would have set our price expectations ahead of time.
Excellent tour with Ephesus Tours with a very experienced guide. It was even better that our guide had a driver so he could focus his attention on giving us the best experience in Ephesus. His English was excellent and he was extremely knowledgeable. Vehicle was clean and comfortable. Our tour included the House of the Virgin Mary, Temple of Artemis, Basilica of St. John, Carpet Weaving, the Celsius Library, the archaeological site and the Great Theater of Ephesus. We also had a traditional lunch. Be prepared for aggressive sales pitches if your tour includes a carpet weaving demonstration.
Ephesus was truly fascinating with well preserved ruins. Our tour guide took us for lunch in a local retaurant which was great. In town the merchants are bold and relentless. As a New Yorker it even got to me but you can strike a good deal if you have some "chutspa".
When in Ephesus, Turkey, we booked the KD77 Ephesus and Sirince shore excursion. The Aegean Village of Sirince was a mega highlight of our entire trip. The excursion had a pre-arranged luncheon for the group at the Artemis Restaurant, where we ate fresh excellent local food outside under roofing, very open, gorgeous views - very quaint and authentically indigenous in feel. In the town on our free time, we purchased perhaps the best peaches, from a street vendor, that we have ever had. Since being back home, we often talk about the peaches we ate in Sirince, and also, this past August, in Aix-en-Provance - we have been unable to buy any US peaches, they just don't measure up in freshness, flavor, juiciness!
Ephesus itself was awe inspiring - the Trajan Fountain, the Temple of Hadrian, the iconic Library of Celsius and the Grand Theater where St. Paul himself preached to over 24,000 followers.
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