635 Kusadasi Cruise Reviews

We were in this port for two days. It gave me a chance to do two separate excursions. DAY 1 - Ephesus & Terrace Houses Ephesus is amazing and I would definitely go back. I missed the toilets - they are between the spot you enter ... Read More
We were in this port for two days. It gave me a chance to do two separate excursions. DAY 1 - Ephesus & Terrace Houses Ephesus is amazing and I would definitely go back. I missed the toilets - they are between the spot you enter the Terrace Houses and when you leave. The terrace house were great. It is very interesting seeing the actual putting together of the pieces of marble together and watching the archaeologists working. It is an active spot. The houses are unbelievable and to think that archaeologists think that they go right up the whole hillside. The colours and mosaics are fabulous. I could have spent a whole day in Ephesus and the Terrace Houses. Well worth going there! We stopped at the carpet weaving demo after the tour which all tours to Kusadasi do. I loved the Turkish Tea. The markets all around are great. Be sure to haggle at the small stores. After dinner,we left the ship again and a couple of us went to some more of the markets. Nice to be able to walk off the ship when we wanted too. DAY 2 - Three Ancient Cities: Priene, Didyma & Miletus Fabulous! If you like ruins then this is the place. The ruins are great. You can touch them and walk where people walked years ago, especially in Didyma. There is a lot of walking and it is very steep especially in Priene but well worth the walk. We had a great guide and he was very knowledgeable. On the way back we stopped again at a carpet place. This day I did not go as I had already been the day before. Read Less
Sail Date September 2010
Not so long a tour, 5 hours, but we did a lot of difficult walking on inclines of marble that were sometimes slippery. The Virgin Mary Shrine is something to see, but due to the crowds, we simply walked through, unable to linger... sort of ... Read More
Not so long a tour, 5 hours, but we did a lot of difficult walking on inclines of marble that were sometimes slippery. The Virgin Mary Shrine is something to see, but due to the crowds, we simply walked through, unable to linger... sort of shuffled with the crowds. You can light up to two candles outside the home where Mary lived and died. You may purchase postcards and take them to the Post Office very close to the store and have them stamped. I am not clear if you are required to buy the postage too but we did and postage to the US was expensive. There was a serious language barrier with the Postal Clerk. The tomb of St. John was not at all what we expected but were glad we saw it. It's just a large slab on the ground surrounded by ruins. It did feel like a Holy place despite it's simplicity. All very worth whiled to see. There is not room for the 9th Port which was Venice. It was fantastic and our favorite Port! We enjoyed a gondola ride with serenade in the evening and one by day with lots of history behind it. We toured St. Mark's Basilica and Doge's Palace. Must see if in Venice. We also toured Athens, Greece. Had dinner in a Hotel overlooking the entire City of Athens. The food was delicious and an authentic hot lunch. Here again, we were a bit rushed through this 8 hour tour to see Acropolis, Archaeological Museums and the Old Olympic Stadium. Read Less
Sail Date September 2010
Nice resort with nice bars and reataurants. Bazaar is quite modern and you do not get hassled too much and they are always very polite. If you have not been to Ephesus then you must go--it is awesome. Better to do this from Ismir as that ... Read More
Nice resort with nice bars and reataurants. Bazaar is quite modern and you do not get hassled too much and they are always very polite. If you have not been to Ephesus then you must go--it is awesome. Better to do this from Ismir as that city is not so easy to do yourself whereas Kusadasi is. Read Less
Sail Date August 2010
We were a little disappointed in this port. Obviously the weather was nice but we found the local salesmen in the bazaar overstepped the mark with their ploys to get you into their shops. We would have been far more likely to look in their ... Read More
We were a little disappointed in this port. Obviously the weather was nice but we found the local salesmen in the bazaar overstepped the mark with their ploys to get you into their shops. We would have been far more likely to look in their shops if they'd said nothing. One even resorted to speaking Welsh to me when I replied "no" to "English, Sir?"!!!! The Turkish Delight we bought from a little stall on the way back to the ship was great though! Read Less
Sail Date August 2010
In Kusadasi we used Samyeli's Travel, which gave us a wonderful tour of Ephesus and the small town of Sirince, where we had a delicious lunch up in the hills. Kusadasi, however, was so full of aggressive salesmen that we got back on ... Read More
In Kusadasi we used Samyeli's Travel, which gave us a wonderful tour of Ephesus and the small town of Sirince, where we had a delicious lunch up in the hills. Kusadasi, however, was so full of aggressive salesmen that we got back on the ship earlier than planned. Read Less
Sail Date August 2010
Kusadasi is literally on your doorstep & it's a bustling vibrant city with lots of shops, restaurants and an attractive promenade & beach front. You could easily spend a day here. Ephesus is worth the time, even getting up at ... Read More
Kusadasi is literally on your doorstep & it's a bustling vibrant city with lots of shops, restaurants and an attractive promenade & beach front. You could easily spend a day here. Ephesus is worth the time, even getting up at 6am for the 7am excursion, it's worth it and is like nothing you'll have seen before. Try the local kebab platters - delicious. Read Less
Sail Date August 2010
How can you top a centuries old city of which only 20% has been excavated and it is very big. You can spend most of the day there, we did, with out guide Serdar who took us through the history of this ancient town. We also went to a museum ... Read More
How can you top a centuries old city of which only 20% has been excavated and it is very big. You can spend most of the day there, we did, with out guide Serdar who took us through the history of this ancient town. We also went to a museum or two and saw antiquities and artwork. It was a full day of a feast for the eyes and the minds. Not to be missed. And well worth a private guide. The big tours are hard to hear and to get a good placement and to ask a question. Go private! Read Less
Sail Date August 2010
Haluk, our tour guide from Celsus Travel was excellent and very knowledgable for the tour of Ephesus and Virgin Mary House. He was very accommdating in changing the itinerary as we wanted to go to a Turkish bath. The lunch was excellent ... Read More
Haluk, our tour guide from Celsus Travel was excellent and very knowledgable for the tour of Ephesus and Virgin Mary House. He was very accommdating in changing the itinerary as we wanted to go to a Turkish bath. The lunch was excellent even though it was at a Rug Factory, with a demo, but there was no pressure to buy. We would hire Haluk again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2010
By far our favorite port. Ship is docked so close to town, bazaar, cafes. We didn't have to be back on the ship til midnight, so it gave us time to have a relaxing dinner and watch the world cup. Went out to Bird Island to watch the ... Read More
By far our favorite port. Ship is docked so close to town, bazaar, cafes. We didn't have to be back on the ship til midnight, so it gave us time to have a relaxing dinner and watch the world cup. Went out to Bird Island to watch the sunset. The ruins at Ephesus are amazing. It was very hot, but we had umbrella, fans and hats to help us out...but it was a hot. The terrace houses are a must see and it was included with our private tour. Tour Guide was ilkay Candar and his company webpage http://www.e-ephesus.com/form/reservation.html. He is an educator and very knowledgeable. Read Less
Sail Date July 2010
Kusadasi Port is right in the middle of town and so is just a few minutes walk to the beach and shops and restaurants. We didn't do any trips that day but a friend of ours went to Ephesus and said it was amazing. We spent the day ... Read More
Kusadasi Port is right in the middle of town and so is just a few minutes walk to the beach and shops and restaurants. We didn't do any trips that day but a friend of ours went to Ephesus and said it was amazing. We spent the day walking around the town, it has a lovely bazaar but you have to take care when you show interest in anything as its hard to get away without buying. Read Less
Sail Date July 2010
Kusadasi/Ephesus: We also went with Ekol Travel for Ephesus. Wow. Again, this was a first-class experience all the way. Our guide, Bulent Soysal, has to be the best in the business. He literally knows the ruins inside and out as he worked ... Read More
Kusadasi/Ephesus: We also went with Ekol Travel for Ephesus. Wow. Again, this was a first-class experience all the way. Our guide, Bulent Soysal, has to be the best in the business. He literally knows the ruins inside and out as he worked as an archeologist there for many years, and is also a professor. He has perfect English, gives incredibly detailed information, and is just a lovely person. He made the day what it was. I had debated whether to do the Terrace Houses at Ancient Ephesus (there is an additional charge). Do it. It is very interesting. But more importantly, it is shaded (the site is covered). Our day was blazing hot and sunny, and the relief that this detour provided was very welcome. There was a carpet presentation at the end of this day, too; we saw the silk-making process and exited the facility fairly quickly. If you are heading to Turkey, check out Ekol, and try requesting Bulent. Read Less
Sail Date July 2010
We took the Highlights of Ephesus w/lunch tour with stop at Virgin Mary's House. Again we had a very knowledgable local guide. The stop at Virgin Mary's house (since I'm Catholic) meant a great deal to me and although there ... Read More
We took the Highlights of Ephesus w/lunch tour with stop at Virgin Mary's House. Again we had a very knowledgable local guide. The stop at Virgin Mary's house (since I'm Catholic) meant a great deal to me and although there was a short line, it kept moving. Celebrity had provided all excursion participants with a pottery bottle to fill with holy water at the fountain of Our Lady after the walk through the building (unfortunately no photos allowed). The ancient City of Ephesus was amazing, considering it's age. Again, so many remains still intact or being reconstructed. We stopped at a water park for lunch with a buffet style Turkish lunch (ample food), then returned to Kusadasi & stopped for a Turkish carpet presentation, after which it was a short walk to the ship. Again, worth the $92 cost/5 hrs. Read Less
Sail Date July 2010
Didn't actually see much of Kusadasi. so can't rate the town itself, but we did a private tour to Ephesus which was really brilliant. It was extremely hot, but so worth it, and we were glad we had a good guide who explained lots ... Read More
Didn't actually see much of Kusadasi. so can't rate the town itself, but we did a private tour to Ephesus which was really brilliant. It was extremely hot, but so worth it, and we were glad we had a good guide who explained lots of things to us. Pity about the tour of the carpet & jewellery place, where they really did try to hard-sell the goods, but I suppose for the really low price of the tour, which also included lunch, they had to try and get some commission. Read Less
Sail Date July 2010
Kusadasi is a shopping area for rugs and jewelry. Ho Hum. Our tour was to Ephesus which is simply fantastic. We have been there before but wanted our granddaughter to see it. She was completely entranced. We have now seen it twice and I ... Read More
Kusadasi is a shopping area for rugs and jewelry. Ho Hum. Our tour was to Ephesus which is simply fantastic. We have been there before but wanted our granddaughter to see it. She was completely entranced. We have now seen it twice and I would certainly be willing to go back. Read Less
Sail Date July 2010
We had booked a tour for two couples with Ephesus deluxe who we also got at the last minute to take us round Istanbul. Our guide was Gokhan. All I can say is Ephesus is terrific and Gokhan is just as good! The old ruins are terrific ... Read More
We had booked a tour for two couples with Ephesus deluxe who we also got at the last minute to take us round Istanbul. Our guide was Gokhan. All I can say is Ephesus is terrific and Gokhan is just as good! The old ruins are terrific especially the Terraced houses. When we had seen everything, we set off on our way back into Kusadasi. Gokhan said he would like to take us to a pottery shop (he did admit without hesitation or us asking that he would get a cut on anything we bought) We told him we weren't interested in buying souvenirs all we wanted to do was have a swim in the sea as it was so hot. Before we knew it we were at the beach! (we had brought swimsuits just in case) Gokhan told us we had an hour to splash about and thats what we did! Absolutely terrific. It wasn't a fancy beach full of foreign tourists, it was a local,long and sandy beach busy with Turkish families. It was such a hot day and that water was so refreshing. It was the perfect end to our two excursions in Turkey. Great country and very nice people. I would certainly go with Ephesus deluxe again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2010
In Kusadesi we arranged for Sameyeli Travel to arrange transport to the water park which was very clean and good with some great slides although a few queues for some of the rides. With a deep large pool to swim in. Would recommend this if ... Read More
In Kusadesi we arranged for Sameyeli Travel to arrange transport to the water park which was very clean and good with some great slides although a few queues for some of the rides. With a deep large pool to swim in. Would recommend this if you want a more chilled out day. The water park was about 15 minute drive from the port. Read Less
Sail Date July 2010
A tour to Ephesus is a must, take lots of water and an umbrella as there is alot of walking to be done and its very hot in summer. Our tour, The Best of Ephesus with lunch was quite fast, the guide provided excellent information, but you ... Read More
A tour to Ephesus is a must, take lots of water and an umbrella as there is alot of walking to be done and its very hot in summer. Our tour, The Best of Ephesus with lunch was quite fast, the guide provided excellent information, but you move at a fastish pace, so if you want to take lots of photos or look more closely you almost need to break off the group to do so. Its hard to believe you are allowed to get so up close and personal with this site as so many others you are confined to roped areas. Lunch was a buffet, at a seaside resort, very processed tourist like, but the resort was beautiful. Carpet making display was good, but they spent too much time making you feel welcome and getting you drinks- realise its the culture but if you want to buy a carpet it adds pressure time wise. You need to do your homework if you want to purchase a carpet, size, go with colour swatches and a budget in mind. Hard to know if the prices were a great buy, bargaining was a bit intimidating when you are out of practice. We did not buy in the end as we felt we had not done enough homework before we went there. The bazaar near the ship was quite lively, I am sure it would have been easier to handle had we been in Turkey for an extended stay, but fresh off a relaxed day on the boat it was a bit overwhelming!! Shopkeepers are very hospitable, before you know it you will be sitting down drink in hand while they show you their wares! And if you don't appear interested in what they have they will march you down to their other store where they have different things..my goodness its hard to get off the ride once you are on. Got to try on some beautiful jewellery, even though I made it very clear I was not buying! Did buy a beautiful genuine miniaturist painting on camel bone, but it was not a bargain. Certainly a place I would go back to for an extended visit. Read Less
Sail Date June 2010
Ephesus/Kusadasi Our ten day itinerary took in Athens and Ephesus on consecutive days; so many sights to see in so little time! We docked in Kusadasi at 7:00am. A resort town in it’s own right, this is a bustling town with a huge, ... Read More
Ephesus/Kusadasi Our ten day itinerary took in Athens and Ephesus on consecutive days; so many sights to see in so little time! We docked in Kusadasi at 7:00am. A resort town in it’s own right, this is a bustling town with a huge, privately owned port. There is an ATM at the cruise terminal (along with a Starbucks!) if you want Turkish Lira, although tour guides generally accept USD or euros with no problem. We had arranged a trip to the ancient city of Ephesus, the temple of Artemis at Selcuk (one of the seven wonders of the world) and the House of the Virgin Mary high up on Mt Koressos above Ephesus. Our tour guide (Ali from Ekol travel) was waiting at the port at 7:30am and took the four of us to an air conditioned van where the driver was waiting. Small tour vehicles wait just outside the terminal, a three minute walk through the shopping area as the main car park is filled by the cruise line buses. Ali’s English was perfect and he explained the history of the local area as we made the 30 minute drive to Ephesus, originally a port town but now 19km inland due to silting of the river it was built on. Ephesus holds the largest collection of Roman ruins in the eastern Mediterranean. It was a city of 250,000 people at one point and is thus a vast site to explore. Ali made the whole experience come alive, explaining how the city would have looked, what particular buildings were for, the belief and social systems that underpinned the city as well as pointing out the best places to take photos from and finding viewing spots that escaped the considerable number of tourists, even at that time in the morning! In brief, the main highlights are the Library of Celsus, an enormous 45,000 seater open air theatre and Harbour Street, along which Cleopatra would have walked on her visit to the city (during which she ordered the removal of all the books in the library to Alexandria where they were lost). By 10:45am it was very hot indeed. We were glad to have arrived and be departing the site so early as there is little shade. We drove on to see the remains of the temple of Artemis (a single pillar in a marshy field; but well worth the visit for the view and an explanation from Ali) before heading to the House of the Virgin Mary, where it is believed Saint John took Mary to live until her Assumption. The house was reconstructed in the 1950s and is probably rather larger than the original structure but still revered by Christians and Muslims alike. We returned to the ship without stopping at a carpet factory. Ali offered us the chance but we refused, based on tales we read on Cruise Critic. Friends who travelled with the same tour company took up the opportunity and described a hard sell but enjoyed the tour. Read Less
Sail Date June 2010
We used Hello Ephesus for 6 of us and had our own private airconditioned Mercedes van with our own guide for 8 hours. It was better, at your own pace, private and cheaper than through the ship with a large group.
We used Hello Ephesus for 6 of us and had our own private airconditioned Mercedes van with our own guide for 8 hours. It was better, at your own pace, private and cheaper than through the ship with a large group. Read Less
Sail Date June 2010
We hired a private tour for Ephesus and a nice family meal in the countryside. The ancient ruins at Ephesus are truly spectacular, and it was amazing to be able to compare in our minds the ruins with those at Delos.
We hired a private tour for Ephesus and a nice family meal in the countryside. The ancient ruins at Ephesus are truly spectacular, and it was amazing to be able to compare in our minds the ruins with those at Delos. Read Less
Sail Date June 2010

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