Antalya (Attaleia) is one of the vacation paradises in Turkey. The pine
clad Taurus Mountains meet the deep blue colors of the Mediterranean Sea with
beautiful shallow calm beaches. Sports and leisure activities are abundant such
as caving, mountain climbing, golfing, river rafting and sea sports. In March
and April one could even enjoy skiing in the morning and taking a dip on miles
of warm waters along the coastline or by Duden Falls in the afternoon.
History-wise Antalya offers Hadrian's Gate circa 130, a Byzantine church
converted to a mosque with its unique minaret in the 13th century by Seljuk
ruler Aladdin, an old harbor, covered bazaar, a caravansary and a museum
is the city
to Aphrodite (Venus),
goddess of love and mother of Eros.
Some of its treasures include the Temple of Aphrodite, a restored theater for
10,000, the world's best preserved Greco-Roman stadium with marble seats for
30,000, the School of Philosophy, an Agora, the Hadrian Baths, Tetrapylon (a
monumental gate) and the Odeon.
Aspendos was founded by colonists who came from Argos under the
leadership of Mopsos. The world's best
preserved ancient Roman theater is here and rivals the Colosseum in Rome. Its
acoustical design is brilliantly engineered. Once 20,000 spectators watched the
gladiators, today this antique theater is still being used actively for
concerts, ballets and plays. Nearby are the remnants of the Roman aqueducts.
Bergama (Pergamum or Pergamon) According to Roman historian Pliny, it was
"by far the most famous city in Asia". The acropolis contains the
ruins of temples such as
Trajan and Dyonisos, palaces, agoras, the Asklepion,
the Parchment Library, one of the world's
steepest theaters, figure of Nike and the Archeological
Museum. The library once held 240,000 scrolls and housed the most famous
collection of writings of that time. Mark
Antony gave the collection to Cleopatra. The parchment
process, processing lamb and goat skins to use as paper, was invented here.
Pergamon was the home to Altar of Zeus, now housed in Berlin's Pergamon Museum. Asklepion
is believed to be the first full service health clinic in
the world. The name Asclepios refers to god of medicine and recovery and whose
staff and snake are the symbol of modern medicine. Famous physicians Galen and
Hippocrates were born and worked at Pergamon. The Shrine of Artemis is located
here. Pergamon is one of the Seven Churches: Revelation 2:12-17