Location / Place To Visit / Kolophen & Notion


Kolophon (also spelled Colophon) was one of the earliest and most important cities of Ionia. Located on the coast of the Aegean Sea, the city rapidly developed through trade and possessed a strong naval fleet. The present site of Kolophon is situated on a hill and reached by a narrow path, about 1,5 kilometers from the town of Degirmendere.

The terrain of Kolophon was ideal for raising horses, and the city became renowned for its cavalry. In battle, the use of Kolophonian cavalry was decisive factor in the outcome of the encounter. Trained dogs also played an important role during the battles and assisted the fighting soldiers. Dogs were also sacrificed to the gods of Kolophon, particularly a black bitch offered to Hecate, the goddess of the underworld. Kolophon and Sparta were the only cities in the Greek world to sacrifice dogs to the gods.

Today, there is not much left to see of ancient Kolophon apart from the famous Temple of Claros located nearby. The city was built on three hills and surrounded by a wall that enclosed an area of one square kilometer. Only a small part of the Hellenistic wall remains. Excavations conducted by a team on archaeologists revealed some remains of streets and a Roman bath complex.


The site of ancient Notion (also known as Notium) is located south of Izmir, thirty kilometers from the town of Degirmendere, and a few kilometers south of one of the most important religious centers in antiquity, the site of Klaros. Notion was founded on a hill above the sea, serving as a port for the Ionian city of Kolophon, and played an important role as a naval base and a commercial center.

The most important of the early excavations was undertaken in 1921 by a French archeological expedition. The ruins of Notion spread over the flat summit of a horseshoe shaped hill which is nearly one kilometer in length. Although little remains of its buildings, the site is a pleasant one to visit. Many of the building foundations are recognizable including two Agoras, a theater, two temples, baths, and a fortification wall that encircles the entire site. From the acropolis, there is an excellent view of Ephesus, Kusadasi, and Samos Island.