If you are in Istanbul and want to visit Ephesus we recommend any of the numerous flights from Istanbul to Izmir, which is the closest airport to Ephesus. The flight does not take more than an hour. From Izmir airport there are many public transportation options to the city, although several companies offer shuttle service to Selcuk. If you hire one of our private tours for your visit to Ephesus, which is recommended, this includes pick-up from Izmir airport and after the tour, transfer back to the Izmir airport. .
There are no trains between Istanbul and Selcuk, but comfortable and frequent buses, although they would imply a journey of almost ten hours. It is also possible to take a ferry from Istanbul to Bandirma, transfer to train to Izmir and then take another train, bus or dolmus to Selcuk.
If you are cruising…
If you travel on a cruise docked in a port of Izmir or Kusadasi, visit Ephesus is inevitable and very accessible. From Kusadasi it takes 20 minutes by car to Ephesus and 1 hour and 15 minutes from Izmir. If you hire one of our private tours we will pick you up from the port, take you to a visit to the ancient city, with excellent guides who speak your language, and then return you to the cruise.
But if you are someone who likes to go on your own, you can take a taxi from both ports, always setting the price above. Although there is public transport, it can take time and be a little confusing.
From Smyrna (Izmir)
If you are staying in Izmir the best option to visit Ephesus is through a private tour, with an English speaker guide with a proper knowledge of the city and transportation included. Anyway, from the Izmir bus station you can book tickets for Selcuk or Kusadasi. Both sites are very close to Ephesus and we explain below how to reach the ancient site from there.
If you are staying in the port of Kusadasi, once again, we repeat that the best option is to hire our private tour with guide and transportation. If you want to opt for public transport you must figure out how to get to the Avenue of the Friday Market or to the bus station, from where you can take a minibus to Selcuk. In Kusadasi there are some white minibuses, called “dolmuş” which will take you to Selçuk in a journey of about 30 minutes. Directly from Selcuk station you can take another dolmus to the entrance of Ephesus in about ten minutes. If you are someone who likes to walk, you can tell the driver to drop you at the low door of the ancient city.
From Selcuk you can walk to Ephesus. Moreover, most of the hotels have bikes that you can use for several hours. It is a 4-kilometer road. You can also take a taxi from the city, which is relatively expensive compared with other Turkish transport.
Most pensions and hotels in Selcuk offer rides to Ephesus. The cheapest way is to go by minibus, which are available every 10-15 minutes from the Selcuk central bus station or Kusadasi dolmuş stop. The minibus will leave you about 1 kilometer from the low door of Ephesus.