Syedra: spectacular viewpoint and ancient site near Alanya

History buffs and nature-lovers rejoice! If you find yourself looking for a great ancient site near Alanya, check out Syedra. This place is best known from a photo of its Baths on the Taurus Mountain coastal slopes dominating the coastline southeast of Alanya. Most people don’t know that Syedra has a lot more to offer than that one semi-iconic photo. We have a strong feeling that more discoveries will soon be announced following the ongoing excavations at the site, and strongly recommend visiting Syedra to get a sneak peek of the beauty that archaeologists are uncovering on-site. Check out this post to whet your appetite.

Another Team Of Archaeologists Taking A Break In The Colonnaded Street

Another Team Of Archaeologists Taking A Break In The Colonnaded Street

Syedra: a bit of a mystery waiting to be unfolded

Syedra ancient city lies about 20km southeast of Alanya, occupying a strategic position along the ancient coastal road that follows the Mediterranean coastline. The city is divided into two different areas: a settlement atop Asar Tepe, about 400m above sea level, and a lower city on the small hill overlooking the sea, extending to the coast. This is where things get interesting, as there is no historical or archaeological evidence about Syedra from before the Roman Empire. Yet, underwater discoveries from the cities’ port indicate that the region was already active since the Bronze Age.

Click here to go to a thesis by Dr. Hakan Oniz (in Turkish) with a good set of photos from the underwater archaeology at Syedra.

(Please allow about 5 seconds to be taken to p. 149 of the pdf – p. 134 of the document automatically)

Steps Leading Up To A Monumental Tomb And The Church

Steps Leading Up To A Monumental Tomb And The Church

View Of Syedra's 5.000 Year Old Harbor

View Of Syedra’s 5.000-Year-Old Harbor

The Roman Empire

Clearly, Syedra’s heydays date back to the Roman Empire, sometime between the 2nd and 4th centuries. It started minting its own coins under the name Syadreon during Tiberius rule between 14 and 37 AD and continued to do so until the Galiennus period from 253 till 268 AD. The capacity of the cisterns found at Syedra indicates that about 4.000 to 5.000 people must have lived there during that period. An estimate that is also backed up by the architectural remains and epigraphic evidence found on site.

Inside The Baths At Syedra

Inside The Baths At Syedra

Part Of The Colonnaded Street And The Baths Below

Part Of The Colonnaded Street And The Baths Below

Syedra resisted numerous pirate attacks during its existence and also joined Emperor Septimius in his fight against Pescennius Niger in 194, according to surviving inscriptions. More inscriptions on the Colonnaded Street indicate the city’s wealth in the late 2nd and early 3rd century, after which the most significant period of urbanization occurred.

Syedra Is Buzzing With Activity

Syedra Is Buzzing With Activity

Exploring The Monumental Baths

Exploring The Monumental Baths

The Byzantine Period

In Byzantine times, Syedra functions as a bishopric center for the metropolis of Pamphylia. Even today, you’ll see notable remains of religious structures at this ancient site. After the Arab invasion in the 7th century, the city came under the Umayyad and Abbasid states’ rule to go back to Byzantine rule 3 centuries later.

Walking Up To The Temple Tomb

Walking Up To The Temple Tomb

Archaeologists And Municipality Teams Hard At Work At And Near The Baths

Archaeologists And Municipality Teams Hard At Work At And Near The Baths

Why you should visit this ancient site near Alanya

It may seem as if Syedra is nothing more than a Colonnaded Street adjacent to the Bath Buildings, but if you take the time to have a look around, you’ll notice that a lot is happening under the surface. (pun intended) Other structures include a temple, shops, a bouleuterion, town walls, and cisterns. We weren’t allowed to take photos of the Bath Building’s spectacular discovery, so you’ll have to go and see it for yourself. But the level of work that is done continuously is very promising for the evolution of this undoubtedly spectacular site.

We have a strong feeling that, with time, this ancient site near Alanya will become an even more fascinating place to visit.

Part Of The Bath Building Overlooking The Coastline Below

Part Of The Bath Building Overlooking The Coastline Below

Please note that this is not a stop to consider if you’re having mobility issues. There is a lot of ground to cover, and, before you get to see any ruins, you’ll have to climb a substantial amount of steps to get there. A spectacular view is your generous reward. Other than that, there are no facilities on-site. Make sure to bring plenty of water on a hot day and something to protect you from the sun. Luckily, you’ll find that there are many trees in certain areas to provide some much-needed shade.

If you want to make the most of your visit to Syedra, combine it with a stop at the Alanya Museum, where most of the exhibits found at Syedra are on display.

Click here for another must-see in Alanya: Alanya Castle

It’s easy to find Syedra, as it is signposted from the D-400. You’ll find a well-maintained parking lot at the entrance of the site. Getting there by public transportation is a bit of a challenge, as you’ll have to hike up to there all the way from the D-400 main road. While the Müze website mentions opening hours, the site was freely accessible in 2020.

✔️ Have you been to Syedra? Then please head over to our Turkey Trip Planner to leave a review. Alternatively, if you plan on visiting, you can add the site to your bucket list.
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Syedra: Spectacular Viewpoint And Ancient Site Near Alanya
Syedra: Spectacular Viewpoint And Ancient Site Near Alanya
Syedra: Spectacular Viewpoint And Ancient Site Near Alanya
Syedra: Spectacular Viewpoint And Ancient Site Near Alanya
Syedra: Spectacular Viewpoint And Ancient Site Near Alanya

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Syedra: spectacular viewpoint and ancient site near Alanya