Visit the House of The Virgin Mary, where the Virgin is said to have lived the last years of her life. The building was rediscovered in the late 19th century by Lazartis from Smyrna based on the vision of a German nun. The site is officially declared a shrine of the Roman Catholic Church and was visited by Pope Paul VI in 1967, Pope John Paul II in 1979 and Pope Benedict XVI in 2006.
Continue onto Ephesus, one of the most magnificent and best-preserved ancient sites in the world. Marvel at the Odeon, the Market Basilica, Celsus Library, Marble Street and the Great Theatre with a seating capacity of 25,000 people.
Visit the impressive Terrace Houses, also referred to as ‘the houses of the rich’. The wealthy and important people of Ephesus resided in these houses, which is evident from the grand decorations of mosaics and frescoes.
Afterwards stop at St John’s Basilica. Built by the Emperor Justinian over the tomb of St John the Apostle, the Basilica, now in ruins, once rivaled St Sophia in size.
Travel to the resort town of Kusadasi, where you will partake in luncheon in a five star hotel with spectacular views of the sea whilst being entertained by a colourful folkloric show.
This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. Ephesus requires walking long distances over uneven surfaces. There are stairs to negotiate at the House of the Virgin Mary and the Basilica of St John as well as an uphill gradient. There are approximately 20 steps at the entrance to the Terrace Houses plus many steps inside to reach the different levels. There is a charge of 50 cents to use the toilets at Ephesus. The drive from Ephesus to the Virgin Mary Shrine takes approximately 20 minutes along a winding mountain road.