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PERGE

PergecolstThe ruins of the once great city of Perge lie two km north of Aksu on the main Antalya to Alanya highway.

The city had three periods of importance: in Hellenistic times, in the 2nd century AD and in the 5th-6th century AD. Like Aspendos, it flourished most of all under the Romans, and it was during their ascendancy that it acquired its stadium which appears to have been one of the largest ever built, with seating for 12,000 sports fans. You can see this for the time being without buying an admission ticket to the site.

The huge theatre that also stands outside the ticket area is currently under restoration. Friezes and statues that once formed part of it can be seen in Antalya Museum and suggest that this may once have been one of the finest of all the ancient theatres. 

Excavations have uncovered much of the town centre, including an impressive colonnaded street with a water channel running right the way along it from the city baths and wall to an enormous nymphaeum (monumental fountain).

The bathhouse near the walls is enormous and contains several broken hypocaust systems for heating. The agora too is very impressive since many of the columns that once ringed it have now been re-erected to give a better sense of what it would have looked like in its heyday. Here you can browse the remains of the shops that once had pride of place both here and along the colonnaded street.Pergestad

Many fine marble statues were discovered at Perge; the best of them are on display in Antalya Museum.

Transport info

Perge is 17km east of Antalya. Without a car catch a bus along the Antalya to Alanya highway, get out at the Aksu junction and walk the two km north to the site.

Perge appears on many tours out of Antalya (I travelled with Nirvana Tours and had a great day out) and Side. From Antalya it is packaged with Aspendos and Side; from Side it's packaged with Aspendos and Antalya. 

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