The magic of Turkey began when we debarked the ship. There was Turkish music and Turkish dancers to greet us. Instantly we were immersed in a culture that was completely new to me.
Our first stop on the tour of Ephesus was the Basilica of St. John. This is the traditional burial site of John the Beloved Apostle.
I assume that his followers desired to have a place to honor him.
There were the remains of a beautiful marble Baptismal font.
We also saw the traditional final home of the Virgin Mary, the mother of the Savior, in the hills above Ephesus. When the Savior gave John the directive to care for His mother, John must have seen to it that she have a lovely, secluded place to live out her final years. There is a shrine here, and it is obviously a sacred place to those that recognize the holiness of Mary.
Ephesus was an important center of Christianity, with evidence of several "big names" that resided there. This is the tomb of St. Luke. It is near the upper entrance of Ephesus.
After a walk down an ancient marketplace, we beheld the beautiful Library of Celsius.
Nearby is the amphitheater where the Apostle Paul preached to thousands, particularly calling the silversmiths to repentance.
Part of experiencing a new culture is trying the authentic food. It actually tasted better than it looked.
I loved Ephesus, Turkey. It was a highlight of our trip. The people were hospitable, the history was amazing, the scenery and ruins were beautiful. Very charming!