Ephesus (Turkey). Just few days ago, Ephesus (Efes, in Turkish) has been officially included in the UNESCO’s World Heritage List. It’s an important achievement, and honestly I was a bit surprised that this incredible site was not yet included.
I visited Ephesus some years ago; although it was tremendously hot, the place was packed of tourists: it draws 2 million visitors a year, most of them come from cruises sailing around the Mediterranean and Aegean sea (and passing from Izmir). However, the site is so big that it didn’t give me a feeling about something of too crowded and even its most popular attraction – the Library of Celsus photographed here – was still enjoyable.
In any case, it must be considered that Turkey is very rich of archaeological sites: if Ephesus is one of the largest, most beautiful and most popular, there are many other so called “minor” places with an incredible history and very well preserved. So, if today I’m happy that Ephesus has been listed as an UNESCO World Heritage Site, I look forward to reading some of the other ancient archaeological sites scattered around Turkey included in this list too. I firmly believe that Turkey deserves it!
For the moment, Turkey counts – with Ephesus – 14 listed sites:
(1) Göreme National Park and the Rock Sites of Cappadocia; (2) the Great Mosque and Hospital of Divriği, (3) the historic areas of Istanbul, (4) the Hittite capital Hattuşa; (5) Mount Nemrut; (6) Hierapolis-Pamukkale in Denizli; (7) the ancient city of Xanthos-Letoon between Muğla and Fethiye; (8) the city of Safranbolu; (9) the archaeological site of Troy; (10) Edirne’s Selimiye Mosque and its social complex; (11) Konya’s Neolithic site of Çatalhöyük; (12) Bursa’s Cumalikızık village; (13) İzmir’s ancient city of Pergamon and its multi-layered cultural landscape and – now – (14) the ancient city of Ephesus.
However, for today it’s a big new! Efes, Unesco Dünya Mirası Listesi’nde hosgeldiniz!