Archaeological Ephesus Tour (Full Day)

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Archaeological Ephesus Tour Itinerary:

  • Your tour guide will meet you at your pick-up location. You will be briefed about the tour & town and Ephesus on the way. One of the stops is the Temple of Artemis where you will spend 10 to 15 minutes.
  • After you are dropped off at the gate of Ephesus ruins, you will start to explore the Ephesus ruins. Some of the highlights in Ephesus ruins are; Hadrian Temple, Celsus Library, Grand Theatre.
  • While exploring Ephesus ruins, you will enter the Terrace Houses, and you will explore the daily life of ancient Ephesians.
  • After visiting Archaeological Ephesus Museum, you will have a lunch break in a local Turkish restaurant with traditional Turkish food.
  • Drive back to departure location with your guide.

Sites to See

  • Temple of Artemis: One of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
  • Ancient City of Ephesus: One of the best preserved Greco-Roman Ancient city and one of the largest open air museum in the world.
  • Terrace Houses: The Luxury Apartment buildings where executive Ephesians were living.
  • The Archaeological Museum of Ephesus: The museum has displayed the artifacts which were dug up at The Ancient City of Ephesus.


A Full Day Archaeological Ephesus tour takes approximately 5 – 6 hours. As it is your private tour, duration of the tour depends on your interest. Your time frame will be organized by your guide as you wish.

PS: You have a great opportunity to discover the handicrafts of ceramics, weaving and leather making, which were the main trades of Ephesus in the ancient times…..



Tour Prices

  • Private Ephesus Tour prices varies depending on number of adults , number of individual attractions to be visited and pick up / departure location. Please get your “price quote” before booking.
  • For Children, those younger than 4 year old are free of charge, between 5 and 9 year old are charged with the half price, children beginning from 10 year/old are charged with the adult price. Therefore, please inform us about the children’s ages.
  • Children need to have ID card or Passport for visiting Ephesus ruins. 



  • Tours includes uneven and cobblestone areas with inclines and steps. Comfortable walking shoes, comfortable clothing, a hat, sunscreen and insect repellents are recommended. Guests should watch their step at all times in order to avoid accidents.
  • Guests must be able to walk approximately 0.5 miles over uneven and cobblestone surfaces in ruins.
  • Temperatures can reach extreme highs during summer months; We recommend that you have a lot of water and use suitable sunscream while on the tour.

Ephesus Museum

Ephesus museum is 3 km from the ancient city of Ephesus. It is located in the town of Selcuk, where Ephesus is located.

It is one of the most important museums in Turkey with its cultural activities and visitor capacity, as well as important artifacts from the Mycenaean, Archaic, Classical, Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine, Seljuk and Ottoman periods in Ephesus and its surroundings. Since the Ephesus Museum is a museum that mainly exhibits the artifacts of an ancient city, it was preferred to exhibit the works according to the places they were found instead of a chronological and typological display.

Ephesus museum archaeological ruins
Eros statue in Ephesus museum

Accordingly, the halls were arranged as Hillside Houses and House Artifacts Hall, Coin and Treasure Department, Grave Artifacts Hall, Ephesus Artemis Hall, Emperor Cults Hall. In addition to these halls, various architectural and sculptural works are exhibited in harmony with the garden decoration in the inner and middle gardens of the museum.

Ephesus Museum is a rich and important museum for Ephesian and Anatolian archaeology with artifacts from digs at Ephesus, The Basilica of St. John, Temple of Artemis, the Belevi Mausoleum, and the other local ruins. Including artifacts from the Mycenaean, Archaic and Turkish periods as well, the majority are from the Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine periods.

The Ephesus Museum is not designed according to chronological order, in a direct contradiction, each room has a composition pattern. For example, the rooms are called The House Findings Room, Terrace Houses Room, The Hall of The Fountain Relics, The Hall of The Funerary Relics, The Hall of Artemis, The Gladiators Section….

Artemis statue Ephesus museum
Artemis Temple in Ephesus

Among other works of art, inside the museum, there are household items, including the bronze statue of Eros with the Dolphin, dating back to the 2nd-century, fountain, and a faded 3rd-century fresco of Socrates. The fresco indicates the importance of philosophy in the daily life of the citizens. In this section the original statue of Bes is also exhibited in the museum, attached to an exaggerated erect penis. Bes was the protector of everything associated with motherhood and childbearing among the Egyptian gods.

During the Roman Empire, Ephesus hosted an important school of medicine. In the museum, there is a collection of medical and cosmetic tools along with a wall of portraits of several famous Ephesian physicians, as well.

The statues of emperors, god, and goddesses are displayed in the museum These statues belong to Pollio, Trajan, and Laecanus fountains at Ephesus. The statues of “Odysseus-Polyphemos” decorated the Pollio fountain. The other are statues of Aphrodite and Dionysius which decorated The Trajan Fountain.

Ephesus gladiators  in ephesus museum
Ephesus Gladiators in ephesus

The Foundation of Terrace Houses is in the first room of the Museum of Ephesus. In the first showcase are medical and cosmetic artifacts. The second case displays home religious cultic items. The most interesting thing is the ivory frieze which is indicated the war between the Roman and Parthians.

Museum has a garden also that fits in with the local architecture. The sarcophagus from the 2nd century is decorated with beautiful ornamentations. Along the West Wall of the garden, there are graves and offering stones on display. The sundial in the center is in a half-moon shape.

Very special exhibitions are held in the Ephesus museum from time to time. The most important exhibition opened recently is the tombs of gladiators who lived in Ephesus, which were unearthed during the excavations of Ephesus. In addition to being the first mass gladiator cemetery found in the world during the excavations carried out under the leadership of Fabian Kanz and Karl Grossschmidt in 1995, the gladiators buried in the tomb have a very special place due to their age, cause of death and diet. While visiting Ephesus, we recommend that you stop by the Ephesus museum and take a closer look at the history of Ephesus.

Ephesus Terrace Houses

Terrace houses in Ephesus
The houses of the rich families in Ephesus were hillside houses.

Terrace Houses were the luxury apartment building of people who were propertied class in Ephesus, established on terraces on the slopes of Mount Bulbul. The houses were built in the peristyle, adjacent to each other, each consisting of two flats. Some of these houses date to the 1st century B.C. from the finds made during excavations. After restorations and repairs some houses were built after the earthquakes in the 2nd century and 3rd century A.D., the houses were two-story, were inhabited until the end of 4th century A.D. and some continued to be inhabited until the 7th century A.D.

The entrances to Terrace Houses were from narrow paths with stairs. The first residence we entered for visiting is residence No.6 and it is the biggest one that was found. There was an inner court in the middle of the houses, which was surrounded by columns in a peristyle and this court constituted the center of these houses. There was a covered gallery area with mosaic floors around this court and all rooms were lined around this area, with the doors opened onto this gallery.

Ephesus hillside tarrace houses

The rooms were the dining room, the bedroom, the guest room, the bath, the toilet, the kitchen, and the room for servants. Many rooms were centrally heated by the hypocaust system (underfloor heating) and a heating system was also installed on the second floor. Inside the walls or under the ground were the baked clay pipes heating the air inside the houses. The residents owned both cold and hot water, separate, which proves the fact that they had amazing facilities. We can not see the second floors now as they were collapsed.

As the rooms had no windows, it was only an open-air courtyard to get the light. They also gain water from these open-air courtyards. Each court has a good hole to collect the rainwater. There is still water in the good hole of the sixth Terrace House. Also, the sewage pipes under the stairs were connected to the main pipes in Curetes Street.

The most important room No1. is the theater room, with its walls decorated with depictions from the tragedies of Euripides. There is a mythological scene (the fight between Hercules and Achilles) in front of an architectural adornment on the upper side of the northern wall. The main dwelling No.2 is the Rhodian nine-column peristyle court. In one of the rooms of this residence, there is a beautiful glass mosaic that depicts Dionysus and Medusa. The pedestal mosaic in this residence is a mythological sea creature that depicts a Nereid mounting a seahorse of Triton as a mythological sea figure.

fresco on terrace houses in ephesus
The rooms of the terrace houses in Ephesus were very large.

In one residence, the portraits on the Wall of the inner court, depicting the renowned philosophers of the period, are very important for the history of art. Depictions of Socrates and the Muse Urania are displayed in Archaeological Ephesus Museum. Some of the rooms in particular dwellings hold key regarding their prominent features like the Theatre Room having the frescoes of some theatre scenes or Marble Hall which was a huge dining room greatly ornamented by a variety of marble types. Ceilings and upper floors were generally damaged, mosaics on the ground, and frescoes on the walls are to be repaired.

When you come to the ancient city of Ephesus, Terrace Houses is a place you should definitely visit. You will see the wealth of the houses and the people living in Ephesus. How are the rooms in the terrace houses? Which rooms were in the terrace houses in Ephesus? How were the baths in the terrace houses? With what engineering were these houses, which had the best underfloor heating in the world, heated?The Terrace Houses’ excavation was started in the 1960s and partially still carries on in order to make it representable for the visitors. Some of the findings of Terrace Houses are presented at the Archaeological Museum of Ephesus today.