It was a 2 ruins day. We left the hotel at Pamukkale and drove first along the valley till the first side valley (direction Geyre) and double back down that valley to Aphrodisias.
This is an old Greek-Roman city and is in the process of being excavated (like most ruined cities here). For obvious reasons Jamaliah wanted to visit this place. It is also outside the main route so we expected that it would not be busy. Which was the case. We agreed that the boys would sit this one out and joint in on the next heap of stones. The museum of Aphrosisias was great. Finally we were there at the right time, i.e. it was open. It contained a lot of nice carved sarcophaguses and marble statues found on the sight. These were actually the first complete Roman statues we have seen on this trip. In Syria and Jordan most statues were completely destroyed or highly damaged. The town still needs a lot of clearing but we could see the Theater and an Amphitheatre as well as some temples and a columned street. It was a good start of the day. From here we drove back to the main road and then down to Izmir and before that town turned south to Ephesus.
We parked the car on the land side of town. Took a bus (free ride) with obligatory stop at a jeweler shop, to the other side of the town and entered the city from here (saving us an hour and a half return journey). The Colonnaded Street towards the old harbor was nice but by no means as beautiful as the ones we have seen in Jordan or Syria. There is a beautifully restored Library building and along the street going up the hill they have restored some of the old patrician houses. It is covered and cost an extra entrance fee but I am glad JJ convinced me to do go and see it. It was not excavated when I visited these ruins 30 odd years ago. You can see lovely mosaics as well as fresco´s and in some places they are restoring the old marble wall covering. From Ephesus we drove North past Izmir on the way to Canakkale (near Troy, which is our target for tomorrow). We drove on till 20.00 hrs and by that time had driven down a side road towards the beaches and found a tourist town with small hotels. Most were full because it is now Turkish holiday season but in the end we got this very basic hotel without aircon or fan and TV but a view of the sea. After checking in, the first stop was at the restaurant next door to have a meal (some of us do not eat much breakfast and we never seems to have time for lunch).