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Basilica of St. John
Basilica of St. John

Basilica of St. John

8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. in winter, until 6:30 p.m. in summer
Isa Bey Mahallesi, 2013. Sk. No:1, Selçuk & Ephesus, Turkey

The basics

Although St. John’s Basilica has lain in ruins for over 600 years, the towering pillars and grand arches of the cross-shaped church still impress. Tours, including shore excursions, generally depart from Kusadasi, Izmir, or Bodrum and cover a mix of area sights. Ancient Ephesus, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, always figures; Christians often add the House of the Virgin Mary and the Grotto of the Seven Sleepers; Muslims often include the 14th-century Isa Bey Mosque; while other popular attractions include Sirince, a village known for fruit wine, and the scant remains of the Temple of Artemis, one of the Wonders of the Ancient World.

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Kusadasi Shore Excursion: Private Tour to Ephesus including Basilica of St John and Temple of Artemis
Kusadasi Shore Excursion: Private Tour to Ephesus including Basilica of St John and Temple of Artemis
star-4.5
$168.08 per adult
Traveler Favorite
Our guide was great. I wish we would...
Our guide was great. I wish we would have had more time in this port. The tour was the best.
jbuhlman, Oct 2014

Recent reviews from experiences in Selçuk

star-5
Great Experience in Kusadasi.
Mark_B, Apr 2022
Ephesus,House of Virgin Mary and Basilica of Saint John Tour
Our time in Kusadasi was limited as we were in port only 5 hours. Our guide was very knowledgeable and informative as he shared information about his country and the sites we visited. Because this was a private tour for six we were able to customize the time we spent at each site to fit our schedule. The House of the Virgin Mary and Ephesus were amazing to see and was a very worthwhile experience.
star-5
Our guide Begu was...
Shenzhao_F, Mar 2022
Private Shore Excursion: Ephesus, Terrace Houses, St. Mary House, St. John Basilica
Our guide Begu was knowledgeable, professional, and very accommodative yesterday. We are very pleased with tour.
star-5
Highlight of our trip to Turkey!!!
Maria_A, Mar 2022
Daily Trip to House of Virgin Mary, Ancient City of Ephesus, Basilica of St.John
This was an amazing trip. We were picket up on time by our guide Mehmet who was excellent!!! The tour was better than promised and HIGHLY recommend it. We learned a lot about the history of that area of Turkey. Had a great lunch included in the tour.
star-5
Great tour
glab, Mar 2022
Private Shore Excursion: Ephesus, Terrace Houses, St. Mary House, St. John Basilica
Great tour, our guide Begu is very informative. Very nice tour with great value. Ephesus is very nice.
star-5
Day in Ephesus
LindaL_O, Nov 2021
Private Shore Excursion: Ephesus, Terrace Houses, St. Mary House, St. John Basilica
Great Tour! Begu did a fantastic job escorting us around Ephesus. We felt very safe with the driver. The day was perfect. We were able to spend plenty of time at Mary's House, Ephesus and the Terrace Houses and St. John Basilica. At no time did we feel rushed and although it was supposed to be an eight hour tour we asked to be completed in seven. The lunch at the rug factory was set outside in nice manner and the food was very nicely presented. The rug tour was interesting but a little high pressure although that might have been because we were interested in them. I would highly recommend this tour.
star-5
Excellent
Gladys_T, Dec 2019
Private Shore Excursion: Ephesus, Terrace Houses, St. Mary House, St. John Basilica
Excellent. Highly highly recommended. Just only two of us. The tour guide Ayse she was great and very pleasant. She did a great job. The van was very nice n comfy. Also the terrace of houses is a must see.
star-5
Ephesus Tour
PAULA_W, Oct 2019
Private Shore Excursion: Ephesus, Terrace Houses, St. Mary House, St. John Basilica
The tour itself was great and recommended. We had a problem that the company used by Viator they didn't had a reservation for us, but after much talking it worked out. Make sure you take a copy of your paper work provided to you by Viator.
star-5
Knowledgable
dickate, Sep 2019
Private Shore Excursion: Ephesus, Terrace Houses, St. Mary House, St. John Basilica
Never thought that I can explore so much on one day, our tourist guide Kamber Dinek is very knowledgable, he is patient, answered all our questions, and timed our day really well, lunch at a garden is very enjoyable and delicious, exceptional!!!
star-5
Best Tour
phxdelta, Sep 2019
Private Shore Excursion: Ephesus, Terrace Houses, St. Mary House, St. John Basilica
Olgay (OJ) met us at the dock as promised and started our day describing the history of Ephesus, Turkey. We traveled through the countryside and took an improvised stop at a cool place for authentic Turkish coffee and Turkish Delights before checking out the Seven Sleepers. Our tours to St. John Basilica and Ephesus were fabulous as OJ shared tons of detailed history and biblical stories. The extra tour of the Terrace Houses was another highlight of Ephesus. Then we stopped for a delicious lunch at one of the best carpet making destinations and watched the ladies in action before trying it ourselves (and there was no pressure to buy anything). Next we stopped for olive oil and tea. Then we capped off the tour with a visit to St. Mary's House, a truly spiritual place. OJ knew everyone and everyone truly loved her as she always helped other guides throughout the day. It was wonderful to see how much she knew and cared about Turkey, its history, culture, and people. Loved it!
star-5
Amazing and enriching experience!
Shantanu_M, Aug 2019
Private Shore Excursion: Ephesus, Terrace Houses, St. Mary House, St. John Basilica
Our family of three booked this tour at the last minute and we were pleasantly surprised to be the only ones that day. Our guide Nevin was excellent to say the least, exceptionally knowledgeable, very friendly and spoke excellent English. Having guided many shore excursions she knew exactly how to take care of guest, knowing how to point out important things like availability of toilets, water as well as walking surfaces to expect. The selection of lunch venue was incomparable. We went to a small farm collective where the meal was prepared using the freshest of ingredients. Soft drinks, water, spirits were available without limit. Afterwards the experience of touring the carpet factory and watching the ladies work so deftly left a very positive experience. This is a highly recommended experience.
star-5
Fantastic value
Safari50862339619, Jul 2019
Private Shore Excursion: Ephesus, Terrace Houses, St. Mary House, St. John Basilica
We were met at the cruise terminal by our private guide and picked up by our private small motor coach. Our guide, Cigdem, was so knowledgeable and so informative it was impressive. She took excellent care of us for the whole day on our visits to Ephesus, Mary's House and St John's. We got even better care at lunch, which we enjoyed in a shaded garden. Lots of food, wine and good company after which we got to learn about hand making Turkish rugs and getting silk from silk worm cocoons. Highly recommend this tour. It is a great value and well worth doing.
star-5
Outstanding guide and customized day
Eugene_D, Jun 2019
Private Shore Excursion: Ephesus, Terrace Houses, St. Mary House, St. John Basilica
Ayca was an absolute pleasure as a guide. She had a bubbly personality, and obvious enthusiasm for her country. She was very interactive with our three preteen children. She is obviously an extremely intelligent woman with multiple degrees in relevant areas of study. She kept the descriptions of the sites funny and interesting even for the children. She deviated from the previously arranged program to accommodate special requests from everyone in our family She was an absolute pleasure as a guide. She took extra care of our older grandparents, trying to keep in in the sun and helping them walk on the uneven surfaces. Fascinating day that could not have been better in anyway. Thank you !!!

Things to know before you go

  • There is a modest charge to visit the basilica, which includes access to Ayasuluk Castle, a 5-minute walk away.
  • Strollers will not be a problem in the basilica but Ephesus’ cobbles might be an issue.
  • Much of the basilica is wheelchair-accessible. There is a wheelchair-friendly bathroom in the ancient Ephesus site, a couple of miles (3 kilometers) away.
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How to get there

The Basilica of St. John sits on the eastern fringes of the little town of Selcuk, close to the Temple of Artemis and Ayasuluk Castle. Selcuk is about a 12-mile (20-kilometer) drive northeast of the Aegean Coast resort town of Kusadasi; the nearest airport, Izmir, lies about a 50-mile (80-kilometer) drive to the north.

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When to get there

The site is open from early in the morning until evening during the summer months, with shorter hours in winter (November through March). It’s a large site and rarely overly busy, so plan your day to beat the crowds at Ephesus and slot this one in when it suits.

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Ayasuluk Castle

Set on a mound overlooking modern Selcuk and ancient Ephesus, Ayasuluk Castle, also known as Ayasuluk Fortress or Ayasuluk Kalesi, has a history dating back to Stone Age times. Today’s vast ruins come from the Byzantine, Seljuk, and Ottoman periods. Besides the impressive encircling wall, the castle is home to a mosque, a hammam, and the remains of a palace.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What are the nearest attractions to Basilica of St. John?
A: