Ancient Perge Ruins In Antalya | How To Get There & What To See

Antalya, Türkiye was the home of several magnificent ancient Roman cities after Attalus III bequeathed his kingdom to the Roman Republic in 133 BC to avoid bloodshed after his death. Perge, or Perga, located about 14 miles (23 km) northeast of Antalya Old Town, was one of those cities. Perge was once the capital of Pamphylia (where Antalya is centered today) and renowned as one of its most beautiful cities.

The most impressive ruins at Perge are Roman, but life here actually dates back to ancient Greek times, and even farther, to the Hittites in the 15th century BC, and even the Bronze Age.

This post covers the top sites in the Unesco listed Archeological Park of Ancient Perge in Antalya and how to get there.

Ancient Roman Baths

The Ancient Ruins At Perge in Antalya

About Perge

I love Roman ruins and have always been amazed by the grand architecture and the glimpses into ancient life they provide. The ruins at Perge are very impressive and definitely worth a visit.

You can tell this city was once very important and quite beautiful when you walk it. With its splendid colonnaded streets, large agora, ancient towers, and beautiful gymnasium and baths it was one of the most beautiful cities in Asia Minor. Today, Perge has some of the best ruins in Antalya and Türkiye.

Although Perge was set back a distance from the coast, it was a port city by virtue of the the Kestros River (or Cestrus), now known as the Aksu River, which runs nearby from the Mediterranean. With easy access to sea, Perge became an integral trade city, while being protected from marauding pirates along the coast.

Important historical figures here included Alexander the Great, who ruled here in the 4th century BC, and Saint Paul, who came to spread Christianity in the 1st century. The most notable citizen born here was Apollonius, a famous Greek mathematician and an astronomer. He gave us the names from conical shapes; like the ellipse, parabola, and hyperbola.

What To See At Perge

Ancient Theater

The ancient theater will be the first thing you see when you arrive, up and to the left of the entrance. You can either visit this first, or make the loop around the ruins and visit it last, like I did, as it sits outside the ancient city walls. Ask before you enter as this fact makes using your ticket a little confusing and different guards may have different practices.

The ancient theater Perge Antalya
Theater of Perge

The theater of Perge, which seated about 15,000 spectators, combines both Greek and Roman elements as this was also once a Greek city. It was once decorated with reliefs of mythological scenes, some of which remain today, and sculptures, many of which are now in the Archeological Museum in Antalya.

The ancient theater Perge Antalya
Theater of Perge


The Perge stadium is the second-best preserved Roman stadium in Turkey. This oval-shaped stadium hosted athletic events, boxing, gladiator fights, and festivals with seating for about 12,000.

Every third arched vault around stadium is as an entrance to its interior, while the other vaults were used as shops. You can still enter the stadium, which has some sections of original seats still standing in place.

The ancient stadium Perge Antalya

The Hellenistic City Towers

These twin, three story oval towers are one of the oldest structures in Perge, dating back to Hellenistic Period in the 3rd century BC.

The Hellenistic Towers Perge Antalya
One of the Hellenistic Towers

On the opposite side of the ancient Hellenistic towers, on their north side, the curved walls surrounding the courtyard contain 28 niches, which once held statues of the city founders and benefactors.

The Hellenistic Towers Perge Antalya
Hadrian’s Arch

Colonnaded Street

The Main Street, or Cardo, is a 985’ (300 m) long, colonnaded street leading from the main gate of Perge (to the north) to the massive massive Hellenistic towers (which was the main gate before the Roman ruled here).

If you look, you can still see groove marks from the chariots in the stone on the surface.

Colonnaded Street Perge Antalya

In the center of this wide colonnaded street, there was a water channel, adding beauty and sophistication to the main thoroughfare of this arid city. Limestone blocks were placed horizontally at regular intervals along this channel, creating intervals of cascading water down its length to the old Hellenistic City Gates. There were also pedestrian bridges crossing the channel at intervals.

A sewer system ran underneath the street, hidden from view. Shops also lined both sides of this street. You can still see some of the doorway openings to the shops.


The Agora, surrounded by colonnades, is considered by archeologists to have been one of the finest in Anatolia. This was the commercial and political center of the city, with shops surrounding the central courtyard, some of which still have mosaics on the floor.

At the center there is a round structure, which purpose is unknown…possibly a fountain or a temple.

The Agora Perge Antalya

Nymphaeum Of Septemius Serevus

The Nymphaeum of Septemius Serevus was a large, two story, colonnaded fountain, a symbol of the city’s prosperity and sophistication. It was built in honor of Emperor Serevus and devoted to the goddess of Artemis.

Nymphaion Of Septemius Serevus

The niches in the facade once held statues, including Artemis as a Huntress, the Three Graces and more, which are now in the Archeological Museum of Antalya.

This fountain is located in the southern part of the city, just behind the two Hellenistic City Gates, near the agora and southern baths.

Nymphaeum of Hadrian

At the northern end of the colonnaded street is Hadrian’s Nympaheum, dedicated to the Emperor Hadrian. This was also a two story fountain, with columns and sculptures in its niches, including the river god Kestros, or Cestrus.

Southern Bath

The southern bath of Perge is quite impressive, built in the 2nd century AD with mosaic floors and walls covered in marble plaques. These baths are some of the best-preserved Roman bath ruins in Turkey.

The Roman baths  Perge Antalya

They include an apodyterium, or dressing room, where clothes would be removed before going to the palaestra, which was a courtyard for exercise and games. There were also a series of baths here to choose from, including the tepidarium, a warm bath, the calderium, a hot bath, and the frigidarium, a cold bath. This was an important social area for the wealthy, as well as a gym and spa.

You can walk through each room and even see the sub floor area where the furnaces heated the baths.

Southern Basilica

Christianity began to spread in this area in the 1st century, and was firmly established here in the 6th. There are two large basilicas here. The southern Basilica, shown below, dates to the 6th century. You can see the cross on the white the stone out front of the ruins of the church (which are to the left).

Southern Basilica

Acropolis Hill

Acropolis Hill is located on the northern end of the city, just behind Hadrian’s Nymphaeum and the end of the main colonnaded street. If access is open, you can climb this hill for an aerial view of the city sprawling before you.

Archeological Museum of Antalya

The many statues and sculptures found in Perge are now in the Archeological Museum of Antalya. They are really quite amazing, so make sure to pair a visit to the museum along with your trip to Perge. There are also other artifacts from the site and massive, beautully carved sarcophagi.

How To Get To Perge

The ancient city of Perge is located about 14 miles (23 km) northeast of Old Town Antalya. To get here, you can drive, take a taxi, take the tram, or book a tour.


To drive, take D 400 east to the town of Aksu, then follow the signs to Perge.


Hiring a taxi to go from Hadrian’s Gate in the center of Old Town Antalya to Perge will cost about $12-15 each way. More if you ask them to wait for you. You can use the Uber app to book yellow taxis (which are cheaper) or Uber.


The least expensive way to get to Perge is to take the tram from Antalya. Take the T1B tram east heading towards Expo and exit at the Aksu stop. You can hire a taxi from here, or walk about 25-minutes to Perge. To take the tram, you will need an AntalyaKart. It costs 15 Turkish Lira to buy a card, then you can add what you need for travel. The card can be bought from kiosks near the stations.


If you want a guided tour, which is also a great way to go, From Antalya: Day Tour of Ancient Roman Sites, stops at Perge, Aspendos, Side, and Manavgat Waterfall, which are all east of Antalya.

Honestly, there are enough signs at the site of Perge to learn about the ruins here independently, but a tour always takes things a step further with more detail and the ability to ask questions. Plus, lunch is included.

Colonnaded Street

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Where To Stay In Antalya

Near Old Town Antalya (Central)


  • If you want a budget option, try looking for rooms in an apartment on Airbnb. I stayed at Cozy & Comfy Room With Sea View, just east of old town. It’s in a good location, about a 10-minute walk to the harbor, was quiet, and had a partial view of the Taurus Mountains. Plus the owners are lovely.


  • This renovated 19th century villa, Palm House 17 – Adults Only, is full of charm and close to many sites. It’s just a 5-minute walk to the harbor.
  • Hotel Lykia Old Town Antalya is a guesthouse in a charming restored historical mansion from the 19th century. It’s also located a 5-minute walk to the harbor.

Near Lara Beach (East Side)

  • Affordable Wolf Suites are chic apartments with a fully functioning kitchen and a pool. Lara beach is a 7-minute walk amd the old city harbor is 7.8 miles (12.5 km) away.


  • The Lara Barut Collection – Ultra All Inclusive looks stunning. It has 8 restaurants, a spa with a Turkish bath, a gym, multiple pools, and is one of the highest rated all inclusive hotels here. There is private beach access with pavilions, as well as tennis, mini golf, entertainment, and more. This resort of located 11 miles (17.7 km) from old town Antalya.
  • Bayou Villas Ultra All Inclusive also looks stunning. It offers sumptuous, all inclusive private 1, 2, 3, and 4 bedroom villas. Each villa has its own private garden and swimming pool with fresh and salt water. It also includes use of pavilions on its private beach area, a gym, spa, and a personal assistant. It’s located about about 10 miles (16 km) from old town Antalya.

Near Konyaalti Beach (West Side)


  • Guden Pearl is a studio apartment is a 10-minute walk to Konyaalti Beach and 5.5 miles to the old town harbor. The kitchen has a microwave and stove top and there is a swimming pool.


  • Sealife Family Resort Hotel has its own private area on Konyaalti Beach. There are two pools, a spa, and some rooms have sea views. It’s located a short walk to Konyaalti beach and is about 5 miles to the old town harbor.


  • Rixos Downtown Antalya – All Inclusive offers an all inclusive option on Konyaalti Beach. The hotel and the private peach property looks amazing, yet this place does get dinged with some bad reviews, so make sure to read them thoroughly if this is what you’re considering.

Best Time To Visit Perge

The best time to visit Antalya temperature-wise is Spring, April to mid-June and Fall, September to mid-October. The climate is sub-tropical, which means it can be humid, making the heat feel even hotter. Temperatures in the summer can get up to the mid 90’s F (34-35 C) with humidity.

Something to keep in mind when visiting Perge is that there is that there is no shade here, so mid day temperatures can be quite warm. Make sure to wear sunscreen and consider a hat.

I visited in early June. During the first part of my trip, the weather was perfect, warm during the day, yet a little cool at night. The last two days of my stay, however, started getting quite warm with temperatures up around 90 F (32 C).

Want More Of Turkiye?

Türkiye is incredible. I’ve been here three times now. I’ve not only been amazed with each city I’ve visited, there’s still so much more to see!

Antalya, on Türkiye’s stunning southern coast, has calm, turquoise waters framed by the beautiful Taurus Mountains, a charming old town, Kaleiçi, picturesque old harbor, and fabulous Roman ruins.

There’s also Ephesus, about a 5 hour drive northwest of Antalya, is renowned for having some of the best Roman ruins in the Mediterranean.

Istanbul is Türkiye‘s main tourist destination, full of glorious remnants from its Byzantine, Roman, and Ottoman history. It’s sumptuous Topkapi Palace, stunning mosques, Basilica Cistern, and Roman ruins are amazing.

Cappadocia, with its fantastical fairy chimneys, cave dwellings, and fascinating history is truly amazing. You really need at least three days in this city to explore all it has to offer.

Pamukkale, with its unique ‘cotton cloud’ spa terrace formation, and Antalya, a great seaside escape with even more historical ruins.

To help plan your trip, also see my Türkiye Travel Guide, which features the all top places to visit, how to get there, safety, scams, logistics, and more to help make your visit epic.

Hello! I resigned from a corporate career in product development to explore the world. Although my goal was to travel for a year, 8 years later, I’ve been honored to have explored more than 60 gorgeous countries and met some unbelievably amazing people. Our world truly is a beautiful place! Follow me into the gorgeous unknown by subscribing below. You’ll receive details on fabulous destinations, comprehensive travel guides, travel tips and tidbits, and information on travel trends, like experiential, sustainable, and transformational travel. Where is your next gorgeous unknown? Julie

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