Tepidarium (1881), by Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema;
a Roman woman unwinds, evidently drained, after a steam bath.
Ephesus is one of the great historical sites of the Mediterraneanan entirely preserved Roman port, complete with splendid highways, arenas and mansions. As one of the Empire's wealthiest cities, it is much more impressive than Pompeii: Strolling its grand boulevards, you can almost hear and smell the ancients at work and play.
The Library of Celsus in Ephesus, one of the most perfectly restored of all ancient buildings.
A gulet, a wooden-hulled Turkish yacht, cruises the coast of Lycia, now known
as the Turquoise Coast. A Blue Cruise around this pristine stretch of Turkey
allows travelers to glimps the Mediterranean as it may have looked to Homer.
Islands in the Gulf of Gocekwhere Daedelus and Icarus took off for their fateful flight.
Istanbul seen from the Golden Horn. One of the world's great cities was built on the site of a scrappy and modest Greek port known as Byzantium. Roman tourists would occasionally come here to catch merchant ships heading south.
A re-creation of the Trojan Horse, by the ruins of Troy. Under the Empire, patriotic Romans flocked here on "roots" tours, to see the great sites mentioned by Homer. For a fee, the Trojans led visitors to counterfeit sites like the tomb of the mighty Achilles, where they could sacrifice, and temples supposedly housing the comb of Helen and lyre of Paris, the whole time reciting key passages from the Iliad. Occasionally, the giant bones of ancient warriors would be unearthedactually dinosaur bonesand placed reverentially for inspection by awed tourists. Few could resist such magical offerings. The Emperor Hadrian himself even traveled here to re-bury the skeleton of the hero Ajax.