Once upon a time, Knidos was a thriving cultural, scientific and commercial center of ancient Greece. This is facilitated by its strategic location on the border of the Mediterranean and Aegean seas. Amphorae containing Knidos wine and olive oil were found in Athens, Alexandria and Crimea. Today, the ancient city is a large area resembling a large-scale construction site. However, after a few minutes it turns out that this is not so. In fact, this is an archaeological park, where you can recognize the remains of walls, pieces of marble, fragments of temples in separate parts - pillars, an altar. As you slowly walk through the magnificent ruins of the once richest city, it is impossible not to succumb to thoughts about the true value of life. The main visitors are tourists who have purchased excursions in #Marmaris and #Bodrum and archeology lovers traveling on their own.
There is no clear route in Knidos, so the itinerary will have to be developed independently. Signs with English explanations will help you explore the area. It is worth walking along the street ruins first, starting from the southern point of the city. From here, 4 wide streets running parallel to each other are clearly visible. Each one ascends from the port to the acropolis. The streets were connected by stone stairs, the remains of which have been well preserved to this day. The remains of the fortress walls can be seen along the perimeter of the city, their total length was about 4 km.
The main attraction of #Knidos is the ruins of the temple of the patroness of the city of Aphrodite, which houses a statue of the goddess of beauty and love, the work of Praxiteles, one of the important monuments of antiquity. The statue has not survived and the best copy is exhibited in the Louvre . Next to the ruins of the sanctuary is a heart-shaped street decorated with pillars.
There were once two theaters in Knidos. One of them, Nizhny for 8,000 spectators, has survived to this day in excellent condition. The upper one is still underground, but its outlines are estimated from outwardly protruding stones. All archaeological finds are placed in a small museum located at the entrance to the park. There is also a gift shop here. There is a cafe next to the marina.
Inspection of the old settlement can be started from any point - there is no developed tourist route here. Wherever you go, tablets with detailed information will accompany you.
Terraces and bays are clearly visible from the lower point of the city. Here you can also see the remains of 4 wide streets running parallel to each other. Each of them stands on the topmost acropolis. On the way, you will also encounter stone stairs that remain standing.
The sub-theatre deserves special attention, which has survived well to this day. Its snow-white steps once accommodated up to 8 thousand spectators, which is quite large by modern standards. There is also an upper theater hidden from visitors by a layer of earth. For some reason they did not dig, they just placed the appropriate markings. The outline of the theater can be judged by the protruding stones.
The colorful mosaic that once covered the floor of the early Christian church will not be hidden from visitors. The ruins of the #Apollo temple, the ruins of the Stoa will seem no less remarkable to you. The second is a covered portico, measuring 11.3 by 16 meters. At that time, similar structures were erected near temples, markets as places for public recreation.
Not far from the columns are parts of a bouleuterium - the so-called place for the meeting of the city council (bule), endowed with administrative powers. This finding enables us to come to a conclusion about the democratic periods in the life of the ancient city of Knidos.
The main feature of the open-air museum is the ruins of the temple of Aphrodite, discovered in the 70s of the last century. This was where the legendary statue of the goddess was once located. Today you can only see a small marble pedestal on which it stands.
The Roman copy of the statue, which is considered the most accurate reproduction, is kept in the Pio Clementino Museum in the Vatican. A less sad fate befell the statue of Demeter, originally exhibited in the British #Museum. There you can also see a lion figure carved from a block of marble. It was dedicated to the great naval victory. There was a second marble lion, but it was lost in transit.
At the top of the hill you will have panoramic views of the coast and the ancient ports of Knidos.
Knidos Ancient City Visiting Hours
Thus the summer term starts on 1 April and lasts until 1 October . The open-air museum can be visited every day between 09.00 and 20.30.
The winter term is set on 1 October and ends on 1 April . At this hour, you can look at the excavations every day between 10:00 and 16:00. In winter, the cash register closes half an hour before the end of the working day, in summer - an hour. The museum has a gift shop. Near the embankment you can find a small restaurant, Knidos Restaurant.
How to get there?
Knidos, 35 kilometers west of Datça, southwest of the Turkish coast.
is located in. Some excursions include a visit to the ancient settlement. As a rule, they start from Marmaris. It is also suitable for independent tourists to go to the open-air museum from this resort. The best way to do this is with a car, but there are other options.
By Bus: It can be reached from Marmaris to Datça in 45 minutes (the bus departs from Istanbul). Flights are carried out several times a day.
Bus times from Istanbul to Datça
You can also reach Datça by car ferry from Bodrum. The ship leaves several times a day. Travel time will be approximately 2 hours.
Ferry timetable from Bodrum to Datça
To Knidos: After arriving in Datça, go to the local train station (bus station). There are minibus services to the ancient city several times a day from here. It is better to learn their program on the spot.
By car: The Knidos road will be serpentine in places. If you are going from Marmaris, follow the D400. You will pass through the settlements of Reşadiye, Yaka and Yazıköy, but Datça will be on the sidelines. The journey will take approximately 2 hours, approximately 40 minutes from Datça.
By taxi: Alternatively, take a taxi. Among the services offered in Datçi are Taxi and other services.