Saturday, May 7, 2011


We stayed in Cirali, and we kept hearing that the ruins of Olympos were walking distance from our hotel, just down the beach. Well, while the beach was beautiful, it was hell for walking -- very deep, whether rocks or sand, exhausting to walk on without snowshoes -- and we couldn't get any information about other ways to find it. When we pulled into Cirali, we had seen a tiny little yellow sign with an arrow, pointing to Olympos. It was faded and didn't look all that helpful, but it was all we had. So on our last full day in Cirali, we drove to the parking lot at the entrance to Cirali, and took off on foot.

see what I mean? THAT is the sign to Olympos!!
this giant boulder is right on the beach; as you round it (coming from our hotel), there you are at Olympos. I absolutely love this giant boulder. I wonder who all has walked through the opening.
these ruins are just on the beach -- no idea what they were.
this was a church, with mosaic floors
architecture and ruins aren't really Marc's thing, as they are mine, but he really enjoyed the water and aqueducts. I enjoyed him enjoying them.
OK: to orient you. That's the Mediterranean in the distance, Olympos is behind me as I took the shot. I don't know what that ruin is in the foreground of the photo, but it was at the beach entrance to Olympos, so maybe a gate?
ah -- here's the mosaic floor I mentioned in the photo above, the one with me in it
I absolutely ADORE this sarcophagus. There's a story written on the face, in Greek of course, something about the ship taking the dead person. And the sun above.....Helios, I assume. Helios, who adored his cattle, if you believe The Odyssey.
Another sarcophagus -- this one was for one of the top guys in Olympos. Sorry not to be more precise. :)
Antimachos' sarcophagus -- enlarge the photo below, to read about it:

the Roman Temple gate - pretty tall and impressive!
no idea what this was -- but what a magnificent setting, right?

if you enlarge this, you can read about Olympos
It was an absolutely perfect day to do this exploring; the sun was out, the sky was blue and it was warm, but with a cool breeze. The ruins were in such a beautiful setting, it's easy to imagine the city that was once here. Marc was so patient, exploring all the old stuff with's definitely not his bag, but it's mine and I loved seeing it.

Apparently there are several different Mount Olymposes scattered around this part of Turkey and Greece; of course Mount Olympos was the home of the Gods -- Zeus, Ares, that whole gang -- so that just added another layer of pleasure to it, for me. On the flight to/from Turkey, and while we were there, I read The Odyssey and just loved it so much more than usual. The legend is that this Mount Olympos is where Poseidon stood when he threw the giant storm at Odysseus as he left Calypso's lair, enraged because Odysseus blinded his son, the Cyclops. We didn't go see Chimaera, the mountain with fire coming out, because it was a pain to get to and we heard that the fires are minimal now, and that there are loads of tourists there, but its presence gave another layer of imagination to how the ancient Greeks and Romans lived in this beautiful place.

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