Myra Ancient City is an ancient Lycian city located west of Antalya province center. Located in Demre district, Myra is one of the most important cities of Lycia. The city, which was previously called Kale and started to be called Demre in 2005, attracts the attention of tourists with its necropolis areas.
Looking at the coins, archaeologists state that the ancient city of Myra dates back to the 5th century BC. Myra, called Myrrh in Lycian language, was founded on the slope of the mountains facing the sea.
Myra, one of the Lycian cities known by their titles as well as their names, was known with the title of the Brightest. The number of artifacts that have survived from an important city like Myra is quite small.
Since the city was by the sea at that time, the people were subjected to the pressure of pirates. The people tried to stop these attacks through Andriake, one of the important ports of Lycia.
Demre district, surrounded by mountains on three sides, has become a wide plain and a piece of land due to the alluvium brought by Demre Stream. Many artifacts found in the city of Myra are thought to have remained under these alluvium.
One of the works that survived to the present day is the theater with 35 seating rows. Myra theater is the most magnificent theater of the Lycian region with a capacity of 10 thousand spectators.
One of the most important structures of Myra is the necropolis. This group of structures built in the rock rising above the ancient theater area is one of the most important necropolises. Decorated with reliefs and inscriptions, the tombs look like small houses from a distance.
Of the 70 cities in the Lycian League, 23 had the right to vote. In the ancient period, the voting cities were one step ahead of the others. Myra is one of the 6 cities with 3 voting rights together with Xhantos, Patara, Olympos, Pinara and Tlos. This reveals its importance among the ancient cities.
The ancient city of Myra became popular due to the fact that the most popular saint of Christianity, Nicholas lived in this city and had the most spectacular church of the region, St. Nicholaus Church (Santa Claus Church).
In addition to Nicholas, Myra is a city frequented by prominent figures of Christianity such as St. Paul, Luke and Aristarchus. The entrance to the ancient city of Myra is paid, but if you have a Müzekart, you can enter for free.