Manisa-Sardis of Turkey
- What is Manisa-Sardis?
- Activities to do there?
- How to get there and the nearest hotels to Sardis in Turkey?
- Best time to Visit Sardis?
What is Manisa-Sardis?
Sardis was the capital of the traditional Kingdom of Lydia, ruled by King Croesus (560-546 BC). Later, it definitely was a vital Roman city. Sardis also spelled Sardes or Sart in Turkey, ruined capital of ancient Lydia, about 50 miles (90 km) west of present İzmir, Turkey. Strategically located on a spur at the foot of Mount Tmolus, it commanded the central plain of the Hermus Valley and was the western terminus of the Persian road. Sardis was the first city where gold and silver coins were issued! From about 560 to about 546 Sardis was ruled by Croesus, who was renowned for his great wealth and was the last king of Lydia.
Activities to do there?
Guided tours are available from İzmir and Kusadasi will give you the opportunity to visit the great Temple of Artemis was begun in 334 BC, retained over the centuries in various architectural styles, but never finished. The 2nd-century AD Marble Court of the Hall of the Imperial Cult complex has been extensively restored, as has been the large, rich Roman synagogue.
Sardis could be a large site divided by the İzmir-Usak highway, with the Marble Court and synagogue on the side, and therefore the Temple of Artemis about 1 km (6/10 mile) to the south, together with remnants of a Byzantine Church a late Roman villa. The River Pactolus, now called the Gediz Nehri, crosses along the western fringe of the location.
The traditional Lydiansgathered gold from its waters by placing sheepskins within the water which collected the dust. in step with legend, the gold came from the Phrygian King Midas who, curst the golden touch, washed within the Pactolus to rid himself of it. You'll visit the location of the Lydians’ gold refinery.
How to get there and the nearest hotels to Sardis in Turkey?
You also can see Sardis on a day-trip from İzmir (90 km/56 miles, 75 minutes or 90 minutes), either by private car or by frequent regional minibus or, less conveniently, by train. From İzmir’s Otogar (bus terminal), head to the İlce Peronlari to catch a minibus for Salihli, the town just beyond Sardis, and ask to be unchained at Sartmustafa.
There are two-morning trains and one afternoon train from İzmir’s Alsancak station toward Usak and Alasehir that take 2.5 hours to travel the 120 km (75 miles) of the track to the Sartmahmut station one km (6/10 mile) north of the Sardis land site. Two returning trains from Sartmahmut to İzmir (Alsancak) depart Sartmahmut within the morning and one within the evening.
The nearest hotels are in Salihli and Manisa, but the best selection is İzmir hotels. Entry is via an 18m-long paved Roman road, past a well-preserved Byzantine, a row of virtually 30 Byzantine shops that belonged to Jewish merchants and artisans within the 4th century AD (Jews settled here as early as 547 BC). Turn left at the tip of the Roman road to enter the synagogue (have), impressive due to its size and exquisite decoration.
The southern shrine housed the Torah. Next to the synagogue is that the palestra, which was probably in-built the first 3rd century AD and abandoned after a Sassanian invasion in 616. Right at the tip could be a striking two-story building called the Marble Court of the Hall of the Imperial Cult, which, though heavily restored, gives a plan of the previous grandeur of the building.
Continuing excavations on the thanks to the village to the south have uncovered a stretch of the Lydian city wall and a Roman villa with painted walls right top of an earlier Lydian residence. A sign points south to the Temple of Artemis, just over 1km away. Today only some columns of the once-magnificent but never-completed building still stand. Nevertheless, the temple’s plan is clearly visible and extremely impressive. Nearby is an early Christian church dating from the 4th century AD.
Best time to visit Sardis
The best times to visit Sardis for perfect weather are March 26th to May 27th or September 17th to November 4th
Be ready to visit this amazing city, and check our top tours to Izmir!