|Another day, another ancient city. This time it was the Ancient Roman city of Ephesus. Once again it is a marvel at what could be built so many thousands of years ago and how people have restored and recreated the site. It was definitely a highlight so far. Some of the ruins have more restoration than the other places we visited but the total site is unbelievable giving one an excellent sense of what the entire city looked like. On either side are the mountains and not too far away is the sea (apparently it is further away now than in Roman times due to silt build up). The hillsides are green with spring blossoms and the sky was shining making the setting for the ruins perfect.
From there we went to the museum where the actual artifacts uncovered during the ecavation can be found. The marble statues are beautiful and include some very detailed carvings from above some of the arches (replicated with plaster at the site). Unbelievable pieces.
Following lunch we went up the mountain again to see the Home of the Virgin Mary. Yep, the bible doesn't say anything about her being here but apparently 3 popes have visited and declared it a Holy Site making it true!!! My good Catholic friends could have had a great time shopping here.
It was a fairly short drive into Izmir, a lovely city on the sea. It is the third largest city with 2 million people. Today is Parliament Day and Children's Day so it is a holiday. As we drove to our hotel we saw thousands of people out on the street but more amazing were the thousands of Turkish flags flying from buildings. Since we arrived early we had a chance to walk along the water, stop for a beer and even find the market before dinner and relaxing in a very lovely hotel room.
For the record no cat pictures tonight. It's not that I didn't take them as they were all over the Ephesus site and posing nicely for everyone. You'd think they owned the place.