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Selçuk

Were it not for nearby Ephesus, Selçuk might be just another Turkish farming town with a weekly produce market and ploughs rusting away on side streets. That said, the gateway to Ephesus does have plenty of its own attractions – many topped with a picture-perfect stork's nest: Roman/Byzantine aqueduct arches, a lone pillar remaining from one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and the hilltop Byzantine ruins of the Basilica of St John and Ayasuluk Fortress.

Like all small places catering to short-term visitors, there is plenty of competition in the local tourism trade, which can result in both good deals for visitors and less-than-welcome pressure. Yet all in all, Selçuk remains a likeable, down-to-earth place, mixing a traditional country feel with a tourist buzz and family-run pensions offering a taste of Turkish hospitality and home cooking. It's a relaxing place to cool your heels for a spell.