Knidos, Datça: Ancient Greek ruins in Turkey

The Ancient Greeks are famed around the world for their enormous temples dedicated to gods like Zeus, Poseidon and Artemis. Millions of people visit the Acropolis in Athens every year, but did you know you don’t have to go to Greece to find Ancient Greek ruins? Naomi is the latest guest blogger on One More Step Travel – today she is presenting the archaeological site at the Ancient Greek city of Knidos (or Cnidus) in Datça, south-west Turkey.

Ancient Greek ruins in Turkey at Knidos, Datça

Ancient Greek ruins at Knidos, Datça

Datça Peninsula, Turkey

Ancient Greek ruins at Knidos, Datça

Historical significance of the Ancient greek ruins at Knidos, Datça

Visiting Knidos will transport you back to ancient Greece. The ancient city of Knidos was located at the very outmost tip of the Peninsula of Datça. In the 4th century BCE it was of significant strategic and commercial importance as the city overlooked the strait of modern day Turkey and the Greek islands of Kos and Nissiros.

Knidos is mentioned in Herodotus’ Histories and was the birthplace of Sostratus, who built the Pharos (Lighthouse) of Alexandria. It was excavated in 1857-1858.

Visiting the Ancient greek ruins at Knidos, Datça

Naomi enjoying the sun and scenery at the Ancient Greek ruins at Knidos, Datça

In historical times, the location of Knidos was important and spectacular. Although the significance of the site has dwindled, the location remains epic. The drive up to the ruins leads you over a narrow road, with views of both the Aegean Sea and the Mediterranean Sea. Once at the ruins of Knidos, you can see the modern day harbor and the old military port. You can wander around the ruins and discover the ancient market place (agora) and theatre in the hills surrounding the site. The best view is when you follow a small goat track that will bring you to the top of the hill with a 360-degree view of the ruins of Knidos and its natural surroundings.

If you like history and are looking for a stunning location for a ruin, the Ancient Greek ruins of Knidos have got you covered.

View over the Ancient Greek ruins and the sea at Knidos, Datça

Cost?  The costs for 1 adult are 10 TL (Turkish Lira). You can only pay by cash in local currency. This is €2,50 or less than 3 USD.

Photography? You can photograph as much as you like. The view where you can see the ruins, the small harbor and both the Aegean Sea and the Mediterranean Sea are striking during early mornings and sunset.

Public transport? The ruins of Knidos are situated at the very tip of the Datça Peninsula. The road to the ruins is one spectacular road trip but public transport is unreliable. I recommend to take a bus from Marmaris to the city of Datça and from there find a bus that goes to the ruins or hitchhike. The best way is to either rent a car or book a tour departing from Marmaris.

Accessibility? The ruins in Knidos are old and situated against hills and small mountains. You can walk around the main area with a stroller or in a wheelchair but the gravel and loose rocks make it very difficult. The best views are when you follow a small goat path up the hill to overlook the whole site.

Location? There is a small restaurant with high prices and small menu. I wouldn’t recommend to eat here other than an ice cream or buy a bottle of water. You can bring your own picnic and enjoy the view.

Weather dependent? The ruins of Knidos are open year round, but there is no shade or shelter. Make sure to protect yourself from the sun and stay hydrated during warm days.

Location of Knidos, Datça in Turkey

Written by Naomi from Probe around the Globe

Travel blogger from the Netherlands who travels as much as possible with a full time job. I travel independently for short weekend breaks or longer epic adventures.

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What are your favourite Ancient Greek or other archaeological sites around the world? Share in the comments!

If you liked this, why not check out more historical destinations or travel in Asia?

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