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Temple of Apollo

Side Travel Blog

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Temple of Apollo

People i met here who contributed to, and improved my trip:

Entering Side is quite an impressive experience, as the dolmush weaves its way through ancient Roman ruins and drops you off at the imposing theatre. From here its only a five minute walk to reach anywhere in the town, which is rather convenient. My first priority was to find a pension, after which i planned to take a look at the Temples of Apollo and Athena, hopefully in time for the sunset.

As i wandered through the maze of streets, a young guy who owned a souvenir shop waved me over. As his shop was next to a hotel, i presumed he would offer me a room, so sat down to listen to what he had to say. After a few minutes of talking nonsense, he told me that if he helped me find a pension, then i must help him.

Temple of Apollo
I expected him to tell me to return to his shop later to have a look around, but instead he told me to give him 15YTL ($10), just to help me find a room! I really wanted to tell him to go f**k himself, as he was wasting my time when i wanted to be looking around, but instead i grinned and told him no thanks. He then began saying something to me in Turkish, which i am sure wasn't pleasant, but i couldn't be bothered to stick around and waste any more time on him.

It took about 10 minutes to find somewhere to stay, and i settled on Emir Pension, which cost 25YTL ($15.50) a night and included air conditioning, satellite tv, breakfast and a view of the Temple of Apollo from my balcony. Not a bad deal, especially as in summer the cheapest place you can expect to find is 40YTL. The only downside was that the shower was solar heated, which i didn't find out until the following morning, when it was raining and overcast!

Having dumped my bags i made a beeline for the coast and and skirted the rocky outcrop until i received my first glimpse of the Temples of Apollo and Athena.
Temple of Apollo framed by 2 palm trees
Not much remains of the Temple of Athena, but the Temple of Apollo has several of its marble columns standing upright, dating from the 2ndCentury AD, and only metres from the crashing waves. The sun was having a fight with the clouds and whilst it wasn't the warmest of afternoons, the only sensible thing to do was to grab a beer and take it all in.

I found a small market selling Efes beer and bought a bottle and sat on the rocks, listening to Jack Johnson and the sound of the sea. As the sun sank on the horizon and the waves battered the shoreline in front of me, the Temple of Apollo was positioned right behind my back, creating an idyllic location. Sadly there wasn't much of a sunset as the clouds won out, but it had nevertheless been a nice experience, so i went back to my hotel to have a nap for a couple of hours, as it had been a strenuous day.
Sunset at Side


Leaving my room at 20.00, i was surprised to find the place was like a ghost town and almost all of the cafes and shops had closed already. The few remaining restaurants that were left open were all charging through the roof, so i settled on some snacks from a shop and promised myself some good food the following day. As i was in no hurry to head back to the hotel, i went to take another look at the Temple of Apollo, which looked stunning, with spotlights illuminating it against the pitch black of the night. After this i went and took a brief look at the theatre and some other small ruins and then headed home to watch tv in bed.

When my alarm went off at 08.30 on Friday morning, i could hear the rain rat-a-tat-tatting on the roof, so went straight back to sleep. At 09.30 i decided that i really should get up, and went downstairs for a pretty good breakfast.
Waves battering the shoreline at sunset
I would have stayed another day in Side if i had been guaranteed hot water in the shower, but as it was raining and overcast, i didn't fancy the prospect of two days with only a cold shower, so packed up my stuff and checked out.

Before leaving the town i decided to take a look around the scattered ruins, which included two agoras, plenty of standing columns and the outside of the theatre. I was pretty disgusted that they were trying to charge 15YTL ($10) for entry into the theatre, when you could see most of it from the roadside and it really wasn't anything special. I'm getting a little sick and tired of the overpriced attractions, i think the government needs to rethink its pricing structure. Sadly this will never happen as too many package holiday tourists come here, pay through the roof for everything and the prices as a result get unrealistically inflated.
Ruins by the Temple of Apollo
In the East where there aren't any tourists, the most you ever pay is 5YTL to see things like Nemrut Dagi and Ani, which are far superior to a single Roman theatre!

Just after midday i returned to the hotel to collect my bags and catch the bus to Manavgat (1.75YTL), which is 5kms away and has a long distance bus terminal. From here i connected on to a bus along the coast, to the town of Alanya (7YTL), which took just over an hour. I kind of wish i had hitch hiked there, as the transport is also incredibly overpriced, but this is again due to the government been f**kwits and taxing the hell out of petrol! Viva la revolution!

When i got to Alanya, i was dropped off in the centre and not at the otogar (bus terminal), like i had expected.
Temple of Apollo
It wasn't the biggest problem, as there were buses running out there on a regular basis, so i jumped on one of these and told the driver where i wanted to go. I knew that the station was on the outskirts of the town, but once we hit the motorway, i knew i was not where i wanted to be! When i went to ask the driver what was going on, he replied in German “ah, ich forgessen” - “oh, i forgot”. What was more annoying was the fact that he didn't want to a) give me my money back and b) pay for my trip back to Alanya. Another passenger offered to give me the money, but i explained that it was nothing to do with the cash, it was the fact that i had asked the driver twice to tell me when we reached the otogar and he had somehow 'forgot'.

What struck me as strange was the fact that he knew how to say he had forgotten in German, but nothing else.
The Agora at Side
It seemed to me that maybe he always 'forgets' to tell tourists when to get off the bus? In the end he gave me the money, after it seemed like everyone else on the bus had exchanged heated words with him. Clearly the passengers were also not too impressed by his behaviour.

I managed to get a bus going back into Alanya, but this little detour cost me well over an hour, which could have been spent sightseeing or eating lunch. In the end i had to make do with some bread and crisps for the bus journey, as the next departure to Anamur left 10 minutes after I arrived back into Alanya, and there wasn't another bus scheduled for 4 hours after this. The trip was only 135kms, but somehow cost 20YTL ($13), which is probably more than i would have to pay in England for the same distance, but i was in no mood to try hitch hiking, as it was getting too late in the day.
Roman ruins at Side

Deats says:
you know im stubborn as a mule, i stayed on the bus until everyone else had got off in the end and made him give me the money haha.
Posted on: Jan 18, 2009
mybu84 says:
sorry to hear about your bus misfortunes, i remember you telling it the other day, i would have probably given up with the driver, thay are often such buggers!
happened to me as well, people "forgetting", and it never bothers them what you are supposed to do.
Posted on: Jan 17, 2009
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Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo framed by 2 palm …
Temple of Apollo framed by 2 palm…
Sunset at Side
Sunset at Side
Waves battering the shoreline at s…
Waves battering the shoreline at …
Ruins by the Temple of Apollo
Ruins by the Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo
The Agora at Side
The Agora at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
View from my bedroom window
View from my bedroom window
Ruins by the sea
Ruins by the sea
Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo
Side Harbour
Side Harbour
Beer and the sunset - what a great…
Beer and the sunset - what a grea…
Waves crash onto the rocks
Waves crash onto the rocks
Beer o clock
Beer o' clock
Side Harbour
Side Harbour
Temple of Apollo at sunset
Temple of Apollo at sunset
The top of the Temple of Apollo, n…
The top of the Temple of Apollo, …
Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo
Temple of Apollo
Theatre
Theatre
Theatre
Theatre
Coastline at Side
Coastline at Side
Beach at Side
Beach at Side
The Agora at Side
The Agora at Side
Ruins at Side
Ruins at Side
The Theatre at Side
The Theatre at Side
The Agora at Side
The Agora at Side
The theatre at Side
The theatre at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Fat Cat
Fat Cat
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Roman ruins at Side
Side
photo by: aloneinthecrowd