Aydın Nysa Archeological Site

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Aydın Nysa Archeological Site


In the fertile basin of Maiandros /Büyük Menderes, on the route of the main trade route, Strabon, who had studied in Nysa for a while, described Nysa in his work named Geography (Geographica XIV,649), defined as a “double city divided into two by a strait that was spread out and formed by a flood current”.

One of the best-preserved structures of Nysa, the Theater covers an area of approximately 73x99 m. It has a cavea (seating area), which is thought to have been built in the Late Hellenistic Period (2nd half of the 1st century BC), and opens its semicircular form 12 degrees. The stage building and scaenae frons (multi-story columnar architecture in front of the stage building) was probably built between 120 and 140 AD as two-story building independently of the cavea. The stage building of Hadrian's Period, which was destroyed by the earthquake of 178 AD, was rebuilt into three floors in 180-200 AD. Nysa Theater, like other Anatolian ancient theaters, has the characteristic features of Anatolian-Roman theaters. The high podiums with the multi-story facade architecture (scaenae frons) in front of the stage building are decorated with reliefs as in the Perge (Aksu), Side, and Hierapolis (Pamukkale) theaters. The podium friezes depicting the marriage of Pluto and Kore (theogamia) and the life of Dionysus, the god of wine, were unearthed in situ (in its own place) during the scaenae frons excavations. The podium friezes, in which many important characters from mythology take place, also convey quotations from the geography in which the city is located. Menderes River and Messogis Mountains are examples of these. Although they were damaged due to various reasons (earthquake or human origin), the broken pieces and figures were repaired. Other plastic artifacts belonging to Scaenae frons were unearthed during the excavations and research carried out since 1982.

One of the buildings used for educational purposes is the Gymnasium, where young men are trained, and the other is the Library, which is one of the well-preserved examples of Anatolia.



The Gerontikon (Council of Elders) is located in the east of the city and northwest of the Agora. It is separated from the agora by the main street (plateia-street 2) on the north-south axis. The building complex, measuring 27.84 x 23.55 m, consists of a propylon (monumental gate), forecourt, two-story scaenae frons (stage building), and cavea (seating benches). The building, which has a seating capacity of approximately 700, is entered by passing through the propylon on the main street. In the middle of the 2nd century AD, the building was rebuilt with its two-story scaenae frons, forecourt, and propylon by the wealthy Nysa native, Sextus Julius Antoninus Pythodoros, on his mother's will. Although no archaeological remains have survived from the Gerontikon (Council of the Elderly), which Strabo counted among the buildings on the eastern side of the city, this structure, which was built in the 2nd century AD, must have been built on the site of Gerontikon. This covered structure must have served many cultural and political meetings in the city.


In mythology, by the command of Zeus, Hermes entrusted the child Dionysus to the fairies of Mount Nysa to raise him. The people of Nysa included sections from the life of Dionysus, the god of Nysa, on the podium friezes of the stage building of the theater they built.


The ancient city of Nysa, with its structures built in the valley in harmony with the topography, especially with its stadium, tunnel, and 3 bridges, presents the most beautiful examples of Roman architecture and engineering to its visitors.


Summer (15/06/2024 - 15/09/2024)
09:00-19:00 Saturday 09:00-19:00 Sunday 09:00-19:00
Box Office Closed 18:30
Winter (15/09/2024 - 15/06/2024)
08:30-17:30 Saturday 08:30-17:30 Sunday 08:30-17:30
Box Office Closed 17:00

65 and over - Turkish citizens Free
Children ages 0-8 - Non-Turkish Citizens Free
Children ages 0-18 - Citizens of Turkey Free
Students (Studying art history, archaeology and museum departments in university) Free
All Adults (International and Turkish) 60.00TL
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Aydın Nysa Archeological Site Rekmez Mahallesi Sultanhisar/AYDIN
+90 (256) 351-2726
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