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Gemiler Island, Fethiye

(4/5 based on 120+ reviews on the web)
Gemiler Island is an island located off the coast of Turkey near the city of Fethiye. On the island are the remains of several churches built between the fourth and sixth centuries AD, along with a variety of associated buildings. Archaeologists believe it was the location of the original tomb of Saint Nicholas.HistoryThe Byzantine ruins of five churches built between the fourth and sixth centuries AD remain on the island, along with a 350m processional walkway. Other remains from the same period include around forty other ecclesiastical buildings and over fifty Christian tombs. One of the churches was cut directly from the rock at the island's highest point, and is located at the far western end of the processional walkway. It is possible that the Island was used as by Christian pilgrims en route to the Holy Lands.Modern archaeologists believe that the island may be the location of St. Nicholas' original tomb. The traditional Turkish name for the island is Gemiler Adası, meaning "Island of Boats", which may be a reference to St. Nicholas's role as the patron saint of sailors; the island was also referred to as St. Nicholas Island by seafarers in the medieval period. Archaeologists believe he was interred in the rock-hewn church following his death in 326. His relics remained there until the 650s, when the island was abandoned as it was threatened by an Arab fleet. They were then moved to the town of Myra some 25mi to the east.EconomyThe island is currently a popular destination for large Turkish gulets, bringing many tourists to the island as well as many smaller private boats since the crescent-shaped bay can be used as a safe anchorage. The Byzantine ruins can be seen from the sea. A small makeshift restaurant stands in the bay for the summer sailors. The owners do not live on the island, but return to the mainland when there are no boats around. A charge of 8TL is currently levied upon visitors to the ruins.
Take a look at our Fethiye family vacation planner to schedule your visit to Gemiler Island and learn about what else to see and do during your holiday.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Gemiler Island (Turkish: Gemiler Adası) is an island located off the coast of Turkey near the city ofFethiye. On the island are the remains of several churches built between the fourth and sixth centu...  more »
  • Walk through the door and you can't explain it, you just feel peace. This little pearl of a store is a really cool place. The workers are the sweetest people and knew how to make you feel like you nee...  more »
  • lovely sights from this island big boulders difficult to walk would of loved to have stayed longer on island bu i beleive wonderful views i did make it up to first to 2church bu still an historical si...  more »
Google
  • Stunning sunset stop for the boat cruises. Wonderful opportunity to walk along the ruins up to the top of the island and watch the sun set across the sea. The walk doesn't need anything more than standard footwear, sandals are fine although trainers are probably best, it's not too steep or difficult to walk. The journey will take about 20 minutes up. Take refreshments to enjoy at the top.
  • You can spend a nice time with your family. You can do water sports that can be done with a barbecue, a.. Also the tents or caravans accommodation offers ...
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  • Paga-se para entrar mas vale cada centavo. A vista é sensacional e a experiência de ver o pôr do sol é maravilhosa, mesmo com o sol se pondo atrás de uma das montanhas.
  • Saw 3 small Golden squid Iceland before. It was indescribable.
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  • Guneşin cok guzel battığı yerlerden biri.
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