The ancient city Olympos

The ancient city Olympos

Olympos is the name of both the ruins of an ancient port on the Mediterranean and of a mountain (currently knowon as Mount Tahtalı [2,365 m]) located some 20 km from Çıralı. Mount Tahtali is one of about 20 mountains in Anatolia and Greece that used to be known as Olympos and were regarded as the seat of the gods. For more information about the mountain and the mountain village of Beycik please visit http://www.beycik.de. The port of Olympos is first mentioned in the 2nd century B.C. Throughout its history, the city was known under a variety of names, among which is believed to be Hadrianopolis.

Under the Roman emperors the god Hephaistos was revered as the most important deity. Olympos fell into disrepair when pirates ransacked it several times in the 3rd century A.D. and was abandoned altogether in de 15th century under Ottoman rule. Today, the ruins of the city are located directly on the beach, on both sides of the mouth of a (mostly dy) river which emerges from a spectacular gorge further land inward

The ruins comprise, among other things, the remains of a theatre, an impressive temple and various buildings containing well preserved sarcophagi. A large necropolis is situated on the sloping southern bank of the river. Another part of the city is located on a rocky promontory directly above the beach.

Because the ruins are partially overgrown with a thick forest of climbing vines and laurel and fig trees visitors may easily be deceived into thinking that they are the first to rediscover the site since centuries. Among the other places of interest in the direct vicinity of the ruins are the village of Cıralı, the fire-spitting mountain Mount Chimera (Yanartas)