Sunken City of Simena

Sunken City of Simena


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Kalekoy (Simena), Ucagiz Ancient Cities and Kekova (Sunken City)

Kekova district is one of the most visited and popular among the daily visitors. With 3-hour boat trip departing from Kaş port, first you reach Üçağız and then Kalekoy ’s amazing history and ruins. Even if Kaleköy is not an island, there is no land transport and due to this in winter time, the population of the village drops approximately 30 houses.

Only transportation way is sea access. That’s why, everybody living here has their own boats. World’s smallest amphitheater is located in here and specialty of this theater is that the benches were made by carving the natural stones. By following little pathways, you can reach to the castle and tombs on the top of the village. When you see the landscape, you won’t regret.

You find yourself in the center of a cute fisherman village with its shabby fish restaurants and paper flowers. There are small, clean guesthouses instead of luxurious hotels or motels. Due to the

fact that Kaleköy is a protected area, structuring is forbidden. Sympathetic and cheery peasants sell their hand made dresses, jewels and organic homemade sage, locust and grape molasses.

When you pass through the Kekova island, a natural wonder where there is no human settlement welcomes you. The reason for being called ‘sunken city’ is that in 2. Century because of an earthquake the city submerged. It is very important location for the underwater archeology. If you look at the coast you will see stairs down to the water and half submerged houses. In fact, the island is surrounded by ruins yet, nobody knows its history because no excavation work had been done ever.

It is forbidden to swim and dive around the island because of being protected area. However, you can take a look from the bottom of the boats or you can use canoe. Still it’s relieving to know that this natural beauty is being protected.


One of the most popular boat tour in the region. Kekova boat tours waiting to you with crystal clear mediterranean waters. You will enjoy a full day relaxing on the sundeck plus many different swimming breaks. Also you will experience ancient culture and natural beauty. When you see the sunken remains our guide will tell about history of the region. Then we will visit the Simena which is crusader castle. The Castle was built on the fortifications of a much older citadel and has a magnificent view of the Kekova area. There are gnarled olive trees, hundreds of years old, next to stone sarcophagi which are shaped like houses. Below the castle is a small seven-tiered theatre and you will see an ancient tomb submerged in the water in the harbour.
Then we head to last bay and have our last swimming break here before we set sail back to Kalkan arriving at 17:00.

Tersane Bay , Sunken City , Pirate Cave , Burç Bay , Hamidiye Bay , Simena Castle


Sunken City Ruins of Simena

#ABANDONED - Sunken City Kekova Turkey (Alantis ?) Glass Bottom Boat Trip, #urbex #atlantis. Kekova, also named Caravola (Lycian: Dolichiste), is a small Turkish island near Demre (Demre is the Lycian town of Myra) district of Antalya province which faces the villages of Kaleköy (ancient Simena) and Üçağız (ancient Teimioussa). Kekova has an area of 4.5 km2 (2 sq mi) and is uninhabited.

After the Italian occupation of Kastelorizo, Kekova — which at that time was temporarily inhabited during summer because of wood harvest — was disputed between Italy and Turkey. The 1932 Convention between Italy and Turkey assigned it to Turkey.

On its northern side there are the partly sunken ruins of Dolchiste/Dolikisthe, an ancient town which was destroyed by an earthquake during the 2nd century. Rebuilt and still flourishing during the Byzantine Empire period, it was finally abandoned because of Arab incursions. Tersane (meaning dockyard, as its bay was the site of an ancient city Xera and dockyard, with the ruins of a Byzantine church) is at the northwest of the island.

The Kekova region was declared a specially protected area on 18 January 1990 by Turkish Ministry of Environment and Forest. All kinds of diving and swimming were prohibited and subject to special permits from governmental offices. In later years the prohibition has been lifted except for the part where the sunken city is.

The Kekova region is 260 km2 (100 sq mi) and encompasses the island of Kekova, the villages of Kaleköy and Üçağız and the four ancient towns of Simena, Aperlae, Dolchiste and Teimioussa.

Kaleköy (locally just Kale) (ancient Simena) is a Lycian site on the Turkish coast. It is a small village with the partly sunken ruins of Aperlae[1] and a castle. Access to the village is possible only by sea.

Üçağız (ancient name, Teimioussa) is a village one km from Kaleköy, north of a small bay by the same name, with the ruins of Teimioussa to the east. The name Üçağız means three mouths, referring to the three exits to open sea.

Simena and the Sunken City ruins of Kekova Island, Mediterranean Coast, Turkey

The Sunken City On Kekova Island

Ruins of the sunken Kekova Simena city island Turkey

Turkey. Travel to the island Kekova. Ruins of Simena. Part 3

#Turkey #kekova #travels #Island #DJONDO
Kekova, also named Caravola (Lycian: Dolichiste), is a small Turkish island near Demre (Demre is the Lycian town of Myra) district of Antalya province which faces the villages of Kaleköy (ancient Simena) and Üçağız (ancient Teimioussa). Kekova has an area of 4.5 km2 (2 sq mi) and is uninhabited.

After the Italian occupation of Kastelorizo, Kekova — which at that time was temporarily inhabited during summer because of wood harvest — was disputed between Italy and Turkey. The 1932 Convention between Italy and Turkey assigned it to Turkey.

On its northern side there are the partly sunken ruins of Dolchiste/Dolikisthe, an ancient town which was destroyed by an earthquake during the 2nd century. Rebuilt and still flourishing during the Byzantine Empire period, it was finally abandoned because of Arab incursions. Tersane (meaning dockyard, as its bay was the site of an ancient city Xera and dockyard, with the ruins of a Byzantine church) is at the northwest of the island.

The Kekova region was declared a specially protected area on 18 January 1990 by Turkish Ministry of Environment and Forest. All kinds of diving and swimming were prohibited and subject to special permits from governmental offices. In later years the prohibition has been lifted except for the part where the sunken city is.

The Kekova region is 260 km2 (100 sq mi) and encompasses the island of Kekova, the villages of Kaleköy and Üçağız and the four ancient towns of Simena, Aperlae, Dolchiste and Teimioussa.

Kaleköy (locally just Kale) (ancient Simena) is a Lycian site on the Turkish coast. It is a small village with the partly sunken ruins of Aperlae and a castle. Access to the village is possible only by sea.

Üçağız (ancient name, Teimioussa) is a village one km from Kaleköy, north of a small bay by the same name, with the ruins of Teimioussa to the east. The name Üçağız means three mouths, referring to the three exits to open sea.

Cruising past the Sunken City of Simena, Turkey: Part 2

A hearty barbecue lunch on board the Kodron was delicious and when lunch was over, guide Bayram gave an in-depth talk about the sunken city of Simena (also referred to as Kekova/Simena).

Rather than repeat all the detailed information in the video, I'm going to let you listen to him but, have you ever seen such gorgeous, turquoise water? Well, perhaps you have.


Underwater cities you can explore

1. Pyramids of Yonaguni Jima (Japan)

Here’s a fun fact that will blow your mind! What if I told you that the Great Pyramids of Giza might not actually be the very first pyramids? It sounds unbelievable but it might just be true!

Lying in the depths of the East China Sea off the coast of Yonaguni Island is a series of unique stone formations, including an underwater pyramid! Discovered in the mid-1980s, the enigmatic Pyramids of Yonaguni Jima are often the subject of intense debate. The most common theory is that this ancient sunken city is the mythical continent of Mu, an ancient civilization that disappeared much like Atlantis.

While the very existence of Mu is a mystery, what is certain is that the structures beneath the ocean could potentially be 5,000 years old. This makes this “Japanese Atlantis” older than even the Egyptian pyramids!

Apart from the pyramid complex, there are also temples, roads, walls, and even a castle on the ocean floor. Some of the rocks even have ancient carvings of animals on them, including what appears to be a sphinx! Thankfully, if you’d like to uncover the mystery yourself, this is another one of the few underwater cities you can explore up close.

2. Shicheng a.k.a Lion City (China)

We now move on from the Japanese Atlantis to China’s “Atlantis of the East.” Unlike the Pyramids of Yonaguni Jima, we actually know for sure what happened to the underwater city of Shicheng (also known as the Lion City). An unfortunate victim of modernization, the city was deliberately sunk in 1959 to build the Xin’an Dam.

Miraculously, despite being built way back in the 16th century, much of the city’s buildings and structures remain intact today, even as it sits beneath the surface of Qiandao Lake in Zhejiang Province. Today, the area is a bustling tourist destination and a haven for diving enthusiasts.

Diving into the water, you’ll be able to see the well-preserved remains of Shicheng. Expect broad streets, majestic buildings, and ornate statues. On the surface of the water, you’ll be able to see a cluster of little islets. Just know that what you’re actually looking at are mountain peaks that were submerged along with the city!

3. Dwarka (India)

As far as underwater cities go, the legendary ancient city of Dwarka (not to be confused with modern-day Dwarka on the west coast of India) is one of the most popular in India.

Once considered nothing more than a myth, this legendary city was discovered in the mid-1900s. When it was unearthed, it was hailed as an important historical and cultural milestone. That’s because Dwarka has a deep cultural significance for a country where Hinduism is the main religion.

That’s because, according to legend, the ancient city of Dwarka was founded by the Hindu deity Krishna! Meaning “Gateway to Heaven” in Sanskrit, Dwarka is potentially over 9,000 years old. That is based on archaeological remains found over 100 feet underwater in the Gulf of Cambay! It most likely sank in around 1,500 B.C. due to a tsunami.

Since its discovery, local governments have put into motion plans to turn the underwater ancient city into a scuba diving site and tourist attraction, making Dwarka one of the few underwater cities that you can explore up close!

4. Port Royal (Jamaica)

Now, if you’re a fan of pirate tales then you’ve most certainly heard of the legendary Port Royal in Jamaica. Port Royal was once the seat of power of the British government. However, most people know it today as a haven for pirates in the 17th century. In fact, even the famous legendary pirate, Blackbeard, called Port Royal his home.

Unfortunately, an earthquake and tsunami in 1692 saw two-thirds of the port city consumed by the Caribbean Sea. While there were attempts to rebuild the city, a string of natural disasters, fires, and the cholera pandemic continually hampered progress. Another major earthquake in 1907 sealed the fate of this once illustrious port city.

While the part of the port that remains above land isn’t much to look at, the underwater remains of the sunken city is an absolute diver’s paradise! You’ll be able to explore the ruins of the sunken pirate city and even learn about its rich history! Don’t worry, we’re pretty sure Davy Jones isn’t lurking in the water!

5. Olous (Greece)

Given the sheer popularity of the legend of Atlantis, it is practically impossible to talk about ancient sunken cities without mentioning Greece. Even though we do not know yet whether Atlantis is real, there are a couple of ancient underwater cities in Greece that are just as equally beautiful and full of mystery.

Olous was once a bustling city of 40,000 people. Now, it slumbers beneath the waves of the Aegean Sea. It lies off the northern coast of the city of Crete and its walls are visible from the shore when weather conditions are optimal.

Most experts believe that Olous was a Minoan city that thrived in ancient Crete between 3,000 and 900 BC. The demise of Olous was a gradual one that came as a result of rising sea levels. Of course, because of this, not every part of the old city sank. The ruins of a basilica still stand strong on a little island not far away from the sunken remains of the Olous.

Olous is one of the Greek underwater cities which you can explore up close. But even if diving into the ruins of an ancient city doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, you can still check out some of the artifacts retrieved from the seafloor at the Archeological Museum in Heraklion.

6. Baia (Italy)

It’s time to take a short trip from Greece to neighboring Italy! Even though Atlantis is by far the most popular ancient sunken city, Italy is also home to some famous underwater cities. Take, for example, the ruins of Baia in the Gulf of Naples.

Quick history lesson: Baia was an ancient city of Rome that was destroyed and dragged underwater due to volcanic activity. However, unlike another famous Roman city destroyed by a volcano (we’ll get to that in just a bit), most of the people were able to flee the city before it disappeared under the water. That’s why the sunken city now looks like a massive garden of decorative sculpture more than an actual city.

This is actually a reflection of what Baia once was: a summer getaway for wealthy Roman nobility. Even Julius Ceasar had an estate there! You won’t find many houses in the underwater city (yes, you can explore it) but you’ll be able to see plenty of marble statues that are an ode to the once-forgotten city.

Fun fact: Remember that “other” ancient Roman city destroyed by a volcano? The ruins of Baia actually lie pretty close to the remains of the tragic ancient city of Pompeii. So if you really want to, you can visit both on the same day!

7. Atlit Yam (Israel)

The Neolithic Atlit Yam of Israel is an underwater city that is full of mystery. Discovered in 1984 off the coast of modern-day Atlit, the sunken city is likely a remnant dating back almost 9,000 years. This makes it one of the oldest known underwater ruins.

Despite its age, Atlit Yam is surprisingly well-preserved. As you dive among the ruins, you’ll be able to spot plenty of everyday structures and architecture, including wells, granaries, and storage houses. Perhaps the most enigmatic thing about this ancient city though is the stone circle in the middle of it all.

Experts have so far not been able to decipher what the stones were for, with some arguing that they were random formations while others believe it was used for ritualistic purposes. If you ever have the chance to see them up close and you find out what they really were, don’t forget to let us know!


The Sunken City on Kekova Island

The ancient Lycian city of Simena, often referred to as Kekova-Simena, once straddled the long and narrow island of Kekova in the Mediterranean Sea near the Turkish coastline. In the olden times, Simena was a small fishing village and was later an outpost of the Knights of Rhodes.

Part of the city lies on the mainland, where today stands the charming fishing village of Kaleköy. The mixture of ancient, medieval and modern history on Kaleköy makes it one of the of the most visited places in Turkey today. Worth seeing here is the well-preserved castle built by the Knights of Rhodes, and the Lycian necropolis overlooking the sea and surrounded by ancient olive trees. Across the bay, on Kekova Island, lies Simena’s other half. This part of the city today lies half-submerged in the waters. The land slipped into the ocean when a terrible earthquake struck Turkey in the 2nd century. Half of the houses, now in ruins, are submerged with staircases descending into the water. Some of foundations of buildings and the ancient harbor are totally beneath the water’s surface.

The entire Kekova region was declared a specially protected area in 1990 by Turkish government, and subsequently diving and swimming here was prohibited. Although the prohibition was lifted in later years, the area where the sunken city is is still restricted.


Kekova Island Sunken Ruins

Before the Ottomans, the Byzantines, or the Romans, this remote corner of Turkey was home to the world’s first democratic federation, the remains of which are now sitting beneath the waves.

The Lycians were a peaceful federation of city-states, dating from around 2000 BCE, and included the sea-trading city of Simena. In the 2nd century CE, Simena was hit by a series of violent earthquakes and sank beneath the waves.

Today it is still possible to see the city ruins, clearly visible just a few meters below the clear waters of the Mediterranean. The ruins of Simena include a shipyard, foundations of public buildings,houses, and a couple of amphorae. Above the shoreline, further houses, a few Lycian tombs with their distinctive arched roofs, and the remains of an early church are visible. A stone staircase can also still be found descending into the calm waters.

Kekova Island, where the ruins are located, is now uninhabited, although a few goats can be spotted grazing among the ruins. Occasionally a villager rows across to harvest the wild thyme (“kekik”) that gives the island its name. In 1990 the Turkish government declared Kekova Island and the surrounding region to be a Specially Protected Area, preserving it from further development. UNESCO also lists it as a “tentative” candidate for World Heritage status.

Swimming, snorkeling, diving, and jet-skis are forbidden in the area around the sunken city however, chartered boats are permitted to cruise above it at a slow pace, affording a good view of the ruins both above and below the waterline.

Know Before You Go

Two-hour trips around the bay are available on rather crowded tour boats from nearby Ucagiz. If you're staying at Kaş or Kalkan it's more comfortable to join a scheduled full-day cruise on a gulet from Kaş. Gulets can also be privately chartered for a few days or a week exploring the Lycian coast. Another option is to book a kayak trip from Kaş: you start with a bus ride to the seaside village where the kayaks are, from where you paddle across the strait to Kekova, then back to the mainland for lunch in another village. There's a support boat, so if you get tired or the wind and waves pick up, you can get a ride back to the bus if you need it.


Tour Details

Private Daily Ucagiz Village(Kale),Kekova(Sunken City),Simena tour is one of the most preferred tour by our guests who spend their holiday in Fethiye and prefer seeing natural and historical points of the beautiful Turkey.

In this daily tour,our guests are visiting Ucagiz village(Kale),Kekova(Sunken City)and Simena and discovering the historical and natural beauties of the region and find the opportunity to swim in the sea.We are beginning our private tour by taking you from your accommodation with our private Mercedes-Benz vehicles at 07.00 in the morning.We are coming to Kalkan at the end of our journey which will take approximately 1 hour 05 minutes,according to the location of your accommodation and we are giving a 40 minutes breakfast break in Kalkan.

Then we will continue on our way to Ucagiz Village(Kale) and coming to the area where our boat in Ucagiz Village at the end of our journey which will take approximately 1 hrs.40 mins.and we continue the tour by our boat.You will see the underwater ruins of Dolchiste,an ancient Lycian settlement,which was partly overtaken by the sea due to an earthquake that occurred during the 2nd century.Although it is forbidden to swim in the wrecked ruins,it is a pretty good experience to take care of them and take photos and is only accessible by boat.

However,you can swim in Tersane Bay and take a closer look at the ruins of an ancient Byzantine church,Akvaryum Bay is also another perfect spot to take a dip in the clear waters. After a short break,we will have lunch on our boat,chicken or fish will be served with potato chips and green salad,according to your preference.Then we will visit Simena,complete the last part of the boat trip and we will come to the end of the tour program and starting our return journey back to Fethiye.

Please note that this private tour has been scheduled for the couples,families and small groups…

For all your questions or opinions,

You can contact with us by e-mail or by writing message through our WhatsApp line at any time


Sunken City of Simena - History

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    Kekova, also named Caravola (Lycian: Dolichiste), is a small Turkish island near Demre (Demre is the Lycian town of Myra) district of Antalya province which faces the villages of Kaleköy (ancient Simena) and Üçağız (ancient Teimioussa). Kekova has an area of 4.5 km2 (2 sq mi) and is uninhabited.

    On its northern side there are the partly sunken ruins of Dolchiste/Dolikisthe, an ancient town which was destroyed by an earthquake during the 2nd century. Rebuilt and still flourishing during the Byzantine Empire period, it was finally abandoned because of Arab incursions. Tersane (meaning "dockyard", as its bay was the site of an ancient city Xera and dockyard, with the ruins of a Byzantine church) is at the northwest of the island.

    The Kekova region was declared a specially protected area on 18 January 1990 by Turkish Ministry of Environment and Forest. All kinds of diving and swimming were prohibited and subject to special permits from governmental offices. In later years the prohibition has been lifted except for the part where the sunken city is.

    The Kekova region is 260 km2 (100 sq mi) and encompasses the island of Kekova, the villages of Kaleköy and Üçağız and the four ancient towns of Simena, Aperlae, Dolchiste and Teimioussa.

    Kaleköy (locally just "Kale") (ancient Simena) is a Lycian site on the Turkish coast. It is a small village with the partly sunken ruins of Aperlae[1] and a castle. Access to the village is possible only by sea.

    Üçağız (ancient name, Teimioussa) is a village one km from Kaleköy, north of a small bay by the same name, with the ruins of Teimioussa to the east. The name "Üçağız" means "three mouths", referring to the three exits to open sea.
    *******
    Description


    Simena

    The remains of ancient Simena, now modern Kaleköy in the Kekova region, form one of the most impressive historical places in Turkey. The city’s striking crusader castle combines with a wealth of partly submerged ancient ruins and the beautiful Mediterranean waters to produce a truly inspiring place to explore.

    Indeed, it comes as no surprise that Simena is an environmentally protected site this unspoilt harbour town is surrounded by blue skies, white sand and a wealth of archaeological wonder. The surviving ancient ruins date to as far back as the 4th Century BC but most of the sites to have survived are from the Roman and Byzantine periods.

    Although a member of the Lycian League, Simena’s coastal location afforded it a degree of independence from Lycian affairs, instead Simena was a small port town for traders of the wider Mediterranean. Certainly pirates saw promise in the treasures of Simena and the problem of piracy is prominent throughout the town’s history. The coastline was militarised to deal with the threat and Simena boasts the remnants of a crusader castle, erected by the Knights of Rhodes (an order of the Knights Hospitaller) atop earlier fortifications.

    Today this historic castle is probably the most renowned of Simena’s sights and tourists can visit the castle which also possesses its own small ancient theatre among other remains. The well preserved ruins also offer great views of the surrounding countryside and the idyllic coastline.

    While many of the ruins were submerged when Simena was prey to earthquakes in the 2nd century AD, many points of historical note still remain. It is evident, for example, that Roman Baths c79AD were dedicated to the Flavian Emperor Titus during his short reign by the townsfolk of Simena, and inscriptions that decorate the ruins are ready to be deciphered by the eager Latin historian.

    If you’re brave enough, Simena is also home to a Lycian necropolis or burial ground. The sarcophagi are large structures which can be accessed on foot many of them still remain scattered along the nearby hill side. A Byzantine wall also surrounds the village, while the remnants of a Temple to Poseidon can be discovered nearby.

    However, one of the most fascinating aspects of site are the numerous remains which are now underwater. Visitors can see Lycian tombs protruding from the coastal waters along with half-submerged ancient houses. In fact, a small but thriving boat-tours industry has now established itself to serve the needs of visiting tourists – though more challenging canoeing tours are also available in the village while renting a yacht is another option for tourists looking to get the most out of their visit to this spectacular site.

    Today, Simena provides a scenic backdrop for visitors that travel year round by both land and sea to experience the awe inspiring history of the city what was once a small fishing village is now an idyllic coastal treasure trove for the tourist and the historian alike.