Didyma (Δίδυμα)

Didyma (Greek: Δίδυμα) was an ancient Ionian sanctuary. Although it predates the Greek Ionian colonization, the sanctuary from Didyma was famous in the Hellenistic world for the temple and oracle of Apollo - the Didymaion, being the most significant sanctuary of this kind after the oracle of Delphi. Didyma lies about 17 km from Miletus and was connected to the Hellenistic city by the Sacred Way. "Didyma" can be translated in Greek by "twin", referring to the twin gods - Apollo and Artemis (the Temple of Artemis was in the nearby city of Ephesus, while the much more important Temple of Apollo was in Didyma).

Part of the classical Miletus, Didyma shared much of the town's rich history and destruction, being rebuilt during the time of Alexander the Great.

Nowadays the temple can be found in the middle of the modern town of Didim. The town is a peaceful place, but the archaeological site can get rather crowded sometimes due to its small size (so for more tranquility I'd recommend visiting Miletus). Much more information about the archaeological site and temple of Apollo can be found on didyma.com or sacred-destinations.com.

The location on the map is here and some of my personal photos follow.

Miletus (Μίλητος)

Miletus/Miletos (Ancient Greek: Μίλητος, Milētos; Latin: Miletus) is probably the most famous city of the Ionian League. It was an important Ionian center of arts, science and culture, the place where first known philosopher and mathematician lived - Thales of Miletus, and the Greek metropolis with the most founded colonies.

Although in antiquity the city possessed a harbor at the southern entry of a large bay, on which two more of the traditional twelve Ionian cities stood: Priene and Myus, over the centuries the gulf silted up with alluvium carried by the Meander River, so that by the Christian era Miletus became an inland town too. A great map of the Miletus Bay silting evolution can be found on Wikipedia:

Miletus has a very rich history, with the first archaeological findings dating back to the Neolithic. It was a flourishing city, being destroyed and reconstructed several times and continued to be populated until the Ottoman Empire abandoned it because of the definitive silting. More details of the ancient history of this great city can be found here.

Nowadays, one can visit among the ruins places such as:
- The Miletus Museum
- The Delphinion (Apollon Delphinion)
- The Temple of Athena
- The Baths of Faustina
- The Bazaar
- The Theatre
- The Stadium
- The Bouleterion
- The Capito Bath
- The Ceremonial Road
- The Grain Hall
- Kalabak Hill
- The Michael Church And The Temple of Dionysos
- The Hellenistic Heroon
- The Roman Heroon
- The Ionic Stoa on the Sacred Way
- The Mosque of Ilyas Bey
- The Monument of the Big Port
- The Mycenaen Settlement
- The North, West and South Agoras
- The Nymphaeum
- The Synagog
with details on each here and here.

Much more information can be found on ime.gr and Wikipedia

The location on the map is here, and below some of my photos: