House of Virgin Mary & Ancient Ephesus
Mary in Ephesus? The Myth and the Mystery
We say with Celestyal every moment is a destination and every destination is a wonder.
That’s more than just a figure of speech. In some cases it’s literally true. So our visit to Ephesus brings us to the site of the fourth of our Seven Wonders.Ephesus was an Ancient Greek city on the coast of Ionia. It’s now in Turkey. It was famed for the nearby Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders, completed around 550BC.
The temple, with more than 100 marble pillars each standing 56 feet tall took 120 years to build and it earned the city the name ‘Servant of the Goddess.’ A single solitary pillar remains standing on the site, found during an excavation in the 1870s.
As with so many places in the Eastern Mediterranean, Ephesus changed hands many times over the centuries. But it remains one of the largest Roman archaeological sites in the region. You will be in awe of this incredible historic complex and the ruins you explore still give some idea of the original splendour of Ephesus.
Among the sights to be admired still are the iconic and instantly recognisable Library of Celsus, the Gate of Augustus, Magnesian Gate, the Agora, Odeon, the Houses of the Patricians, the Great Theatre, Hadrian’s Temple and the House of the Virgin Mary.
One legend suggests Mary may have spent her last years here following Jesus’ instruction to St John the Evangelist to look after his mother. Many consider it to have been her final home and it has become a place of pilgrimage.
In 1957 the Vatican formalised this recognition. Three Popes have visited. Another reason why Ephesus is important in Christianity is that the apostle Paul lived, preached and wrote extensively here including his Letter to the Corinthians.
Our tour includes time to shop for carpets, souvenirs, jewellery, leather and other goods.
Ephesus is one of the largest, most fascinating and most inspiring open-air archaeological museums in the world. This is an excursion you are unlikely to forget.