Kusadasi Ephesus Excursion Reviews
The tour was quick due to time constraints of the ship in port. We had been to this port before but this time we saw new things and got a different presentation. As usual, the House of Mary is the most peaceful place that we have visited. Ephesus was wonderful and our guide, although short for time, did an excellent job of showing us the main items. The tour named "Highlights of Ephesus" was just wonderful in details and presentation.
Great tour guide and amazing scenery. The day in Ephesus was perfect.
This is the one exception where I recommend Princess' tour. For $59 it was a good value in this VERY hot, VERY crowded - NOT TO BE MISSED destination. Warning...we were unable to get into Kusadasi on a previous cruise...it's often windy and the bigger ships sometimes miss this port.
Brilliant guide really lovely Begum. So knowledgeable and we loved the visit. But if you have any mobility problems think twice very very uneven walking.
We enjoyed visiting the ruins, and the tour guide they provided was fantastic. We did not think Mary's house was worth the detour (and I left feeling very skeptical that she ever really lived there - why is there no actual historical evidence?). The extra shopping/snack stop to the "Emporivm" [sic] was artificial and annoying, and we also blew off the carpet demonstration. I would have loved it if our cruise advisors could have given us better tips for maybe an authentic Turkish lunch without a tourist scene. Note: If you choose not to do an excursion, do consider getting off the ship to explore a bit. If you get beyond the stand-up shops that border the periphery of the ship, there are actually some lovely coastline beaches, walks, and eateries. I wish I had known about them in advance. I would have chosen to have lunch by the sea.
We did not know what to expect with ths excursion, but this was our favorite because of the archeological sites and history of the area. Great job Celebrity!
The ruins of Ephesus should not be missed. We booked this directly with the ship and the tour guide was very informative. The ruins are spectacular. On the way back to the ship we stopped at a turkish carpet manufacturer/sales presentation and we were given a glass of wine and small lunch in exchange for listening to their sales pitch. It was done with low pressure and was somewhat interesting.
Private tour with Ephesus Shuttle from trip advisor.
Our guide was waiting for us on time when we disembarked at the port. Nil was extremely knowledgeable about all the history and the excavation of the sites and had majored in Tourism at a university in Turkey. She spoke pretty good English. We first visited the House of Mary and then Ephesus and the Terrace Houses. Then we went to the Basilica of St John and she walked with us to a nearby Mosque. Afterwards we had a wonderful lunch and then Nil accompanied us to the Bazaar because I really wanted to shop a bit.
The best thing about the tour is that we went at our own pace and Nil tailored the tour to what we were interested in.
Amazing tour! Ephesus, Terrace Houses, Temple of Artemis, House of the Virgin Mary, and lunch at a local restaurant. It was thrilling to walk the same streets that Paul had walked and see where he had preached. Even if you have a tour guide, read up on the history of the city prior to your visit...it will help you remember things the guide tells you. It's HOT...bring water, wear a hat, and maybe even carry an umbrella for shade.
Best of the Best. This is a must see, don't miss this if you go to this port. GREAT guide.
With another well-trained and experienced guide, we spent a magical day at Ephesus and were amazed at the scope of excavation of this ancient city. The pacing was easy to allow for cautious footing as well as plenty of picture taking. We could have done without the trip to a carpet shop upon our return to Kusadasi, but did enjoy the refreshments served to us while we learned about the history of carpet-making.
Ephesus: Transportation is not reliable here so we took another ship excursion. We saw and learned alot but our only gripe was EVERY tour ended at a rug weaving demonstration. We ducked out and did some shopping as this was the first chance we have had to shop. There is lots of good shopping right close to the docks and a short walk to the ship. Security is tight here so don't do anything suspicious. One in our group pulled something out of his bag to show us and he was stopped and searched.
Do not miss Ephesus. It is fabulous and amazing.
I would not be exaggerating if I say our guided tour of Ephesus with Ertunga (www.ertungaecir.com) was one of the highlights of our cruise. We were picked up on time from the port and taken to Virgin Mary's House. We came there just on time, before the cruise buses. Then we drove to Ephesus where Ertunga walked us around and explained us the sight. The Library was fascinating and the Grand Theater impressive too. One of the visitors was singing in the theater so we had chance to hear the acoustic. Ertunga's knowledge of the area is exceptional. He was very flexible and allowed us to choose what we wanted to do and see, but had good recommendations when we asked. Even introduced us to Turkish rug making. It was a great experience and there was no pressure at all. I would not hesitate to contact him again and would certainly send any friends or family going to Turkey his way
Booked the half day tour to Ephesus which was worthwhile as we were one of the first buses to arrive and we got to see the sites without the crowds. Well worth a visit.Glad we were early as over 50 buses waiting to get in as we left.Got taken to the carpet demo afterwards in Kusadasi which to be fair we could have walked away from if we had wanted.Was actually quite interesting and the owner was very funny and polite with no hard sell afterwards.We left and walked around the town which we liked and did some "negotiating" with the local shops for some souvenirs. Having been to countries which demand you haggle I wasn't to bothered but I know several passengers not used to it got angry and upset at the constant hard sell. Its not for everyone. Had the usual Macdonalds/Burger King/Irish bar/Starbucks as well as nice local cafe's and bakeries to try baclava and other Greek/turkish foods.Ship was docked right next to town.
I personnally loved it as I am found of History, but my husband found it tiring, but we enjoyed the scenery and the history.
It is a very brief stop at Kusadasi so the tour was rushed. This was not a tour for those with any mobility issues. We raced through the ruins at Ephesus literally taking pictures as you moved. It was very crowded and it was difficult to keep up with the guide (not the best) if you stopped for a second to look around. The lines were very long at the Virgin Mary shrine and eliminated any chance of stopping in Kusadasi to see the actual town as was supposed to happen at the end. Another stop was made at the ruins of St. John's basilica where he is buried. I would recommend skipping the Virgin Mary shrine and St. John's and taking more time in the ruins of Ephesus and seeing a bit of Kusadasi.
We just took the self guided tour with ipod We just wanted to get there and back without the hassles. "Princess" the bus tour guide was great giving a bit of history on the way there and back. The rug shop tour afterwards though hard sell was actually interesting and the rugs were truly beautiful all but 7 people disappeared when that part of the tour arrived.
Bus drive to site was more interesting after Istanbul it started to look the same,especially the Grand Bazar. Unless your looking to buy alot most ppl looked bored walking around just trying to kill time to catch the bus back to the ship.
requested not to take a rug tour . we ended up in a leather shop instead. Plan on at least one sell job whatever tour you take. We avoided Kusadasi. Most of the people we talked with later had some sort of rude slaes experience in the port town.
Good tour guide and fascinating to walk around.
Ephesus is an amazing city. Not to be missed if you like ancient history or Christian history.
Excellent tour guide - practical, witty and forthright. They used a radio system - we were all provided with a receiver and an earpiece. This meant that the guide could talk to us via the earpiece without having to raise her voice and without us having to be right by her in order to hear. It also meant that she could gather the group together without shouting at people. Fabulous.
The obligatory "short" carpet presentation took 45 mins and then turned in to a heavy sell.
We decided to search for a better Kusadasi half-day tour than the pricy one that the Princess Cruises was offering, and we were certainly delighted by all we have got by this private, high value for money excursion that we found on Ada Vegas Travel site (www.adavegastravel.com/ ): the car was at high standards, very comfortable and with a good driver, the guide - Ozan Ozgun, was a pleasant, intelligent, educated and very competent young person who made this tour as instructive and as enjoyable as one can ask, the city of Kusadasi and the Ephesus site were breathtaking!
The Ephesus site, this great outdoor museum of Turkey is perhaps one of the the best-preserved ancient cities we have visited. Financially supported by the government of Turkey, it is a real attraction for the port of call Kusadasi. A real out-of-time city, with ruins of commercial, religious and social buildings staying erect from ancient Greek and Roman times, Ephesus is an unforgettable gathering of spectacular ruins, among which The Celsus Library is an outstanding structure, made of white marble, with rich decorations in relief, rosettes and garlands, and the figures of antique gods, like Nike and Eros.
Not to be missed inside Ephesus, the Terrace Houses, very impressive indeed, well preserved, just being dug. These houses inhabited by the wealthy social class (for this reason they are also known as "houses of the rich" or "palaces on the slopes" enchant the tourists by beautiful mosaics decorating the amazing bathrooms with central heating of that times!
Not to forget a very tasty traditional lunch served far away from the hot and crowded areas, in a small restaurant, inside a paradise garden with no other noise than the birds' singing, full of Mediterranean colors and odors. We have also visited two handcrafts points, the Selcuc Firca pottery showroom and demonstration center, where fabulous hand-painted ceramics made using rock crystal powder were a delight to admire, and the Galata Quality jewelry center, a true Aladin's cave full of marvelous pieces!
we hadnt realised how busy the House of Virgin Mary was - it was easily the busiest destination in any tour - there were thousands there and maybe a hundred buses - and it is a tiny area ! We just drove by Ephesus so didnt really see it much.
This was my second visit to Ephesus and nothing had changed. It was very hot as usual (late July). At the end of the tour, we were given an ice-cold towel to cool off. Local tour guide was enthusiastic and knowledgeable.
The tour of Ephesus was exceptional and the guide, Ayshin, spoke perfect English and was extremely warm and engaging. The highlight of the trip was a visit to a wonderful bed and breakfast in Sirince for a private lunch of the traditional Turkish cuisine.
We were taken to 'Mary's House' which was not what I had expected it was very small. Then we walked through the ruins of Ephesus which were fantastic very different from Pompeii in every respect.
Very good tour, be prepared as it was 40C+ temperatures on the tour
My parents visited Ephesus a few years ago and their descriptions of how well preserved and detailed this site is didn't do the real thing justice. If you wish to experience the model for an ancient Roman city, this is the place to go.
This tour was very long although it was fascinating and the guide extremely knowledgeable. However we had a long time there and my husband was bored. At the end of the tour we were invited to a carpet display which we though would last 15 mins or so (so were were told) but it took ages and it was very difficult to leave at the end as they were trying to sell us very expensive carpets and rugs we did not want.
We loved exploring the ruins in Ephesus and the tour guide was very well informed. We were amazed a the size of the site and the mixture of cultures that had left their marks on the area. We also went to the small town of Siringe for arts and crafts market and lunch. This was also fun but I would have liked more time to explore that area. I would have skipped the mandatory tour of the carpet weaving studio since I already knew how that is done. And the carpets were very expensive.
PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE DO NOT TAKE EPHESUS IF YOU HAVE ANY DIFFICULTY WALKING. We were misled by description that said it's a gentle downsloping walk. Well, it's not. Large uneven stones filled with potholes make walking downright dangerous and if it's raining, stay on the bus! Passengers who were not in shape returned to bus huffing & puffing! Actually, Ephesus had better ruins than Pompeii, but if you've seen Pompeii, be happy and skip Ephesus. Even our tourguide admitted that she has seen some pretty bad falls.
Fantastic tour - great tour guide (Khan)the ships crew provided midway through the ruins tour cold drinks & frozen towels.
Very crowded also very hot time of year to do this - might be better in spring time. Was impossible to browse the town of Kusadasi without being pestered to buy something though.
All of the ruin of Ephesus are a "must do" when visiting Kusadasi. Enjoyed every moment of the tour.