Pergamum – the Asclepion & Archaeologica
Duration: 4 1/2 hours
Tour Code: dik-001
Dikili is a picturesque coastal town that is a popular tourist spot during the summer months. Along with its natural scenic beauty, the area also offers up some interesting historical locations as well. Among these are the ruins found in nearby Pergamum. This fascinating site was settled by one civilization after another since ancient times; however, it wasn't until around 300 AD, that Pergamum's golden age began with the invention of parchment in the city.
Boarding your coach at the pier, you will travel from the port to the Asclepion of Pergamum, named after Asclepion, the god of health. To reach here, you will pass through the fertile plains that surround the Selinus River and travel along a sacred road that is lined with monuments and architectural fragments from antiquity. The Asclepion added to Pergamum's reputation as a center of learning and science and contained a rehabilitation center, an Ionic portico, sacred spring, latrines, and something called a psychotherapy tunnel.
From the Asclepion, you will next travel to the Pergamum courtyard, which houses a large temple dedicated to the ancient Egyptian god Serapis in the 2nd century AD. Built using red, flat bricks, the truly massive red structure was at one time believed to be the house of the Devil; however, with the rise of Christianity, it was later converted into a church and dedicated to St. Paul. It is uncertain, but suggested that one of the towers of the temple was once used as a synagogue by the Jews.
Your final tour stop will be at the Archaeological Museum of Pergamum, a small museum but one that gives you the opportunity to see important collections from the area. If you like, you will have free time to explore the city before returning to the pier and re-boarding the ship.
Please note: This tour consists of approximately 1 1/2 hours of moderate walking/standing, at times over uneven surfaces. It is not available to wheelchair guests and those with mobility concerns are cautioned to evaluate their personal level of stamina and ability. Comfortable, flat-heeled, closed-toe walking shoes, a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen are recommended. Those who elect to stay in town are responsible for making their own way back to the pier.