Ephesus is located in Selcuk, Izmir, Turkey. It was one of the most important cities on the Aegean coast of Asia Minor in the ancient world. The history of the city goes back to 3000 BC. The city was ruled by kings until the latter half of the second century BC, when the Romans took over Asia Minor from Pergamene Kingdom. It was a harbor city and the capital of Roman Asia during the Roman period. The city was also the most important commercial and financial center in the Asian dominions of Rome. Paul made numerous conversions among both the Jews and Greeks during his two visits to Ephesus on his second and third missionary journeys. The total area of the city is nine square kilometers. The fame and prosperity of Ephesus started declining in the second half of the fourth century A.D. Severe earthquakes, which happened between 369-370 AD, devastated the whole city. The city began losing its importance after the fifth century AD because that tens of thousands of people had died in the earthquakes and the harbor was damaged and silted up by the river Kystros.
Derinkuyu Underground City
Speaking of Dwarves and Tolkien, the Derinkuyu Underground City just might fool you into thinking you are in Middle Earth or at least in the middle of the earth. This city built possible between the 8th - 7th century BC is an underground settlement roughly 60-70 meters in depth. This city would have been home to roughly 20,000 people. It has 5 levels which are connected by a vertical staircase and it has a single ventilation shaft. The city has everything from stables, wineries to chapels. Moreover, this is not the only underground city, there are more, one of them, Kayamikli, is connected to this via an 8 KM tunnel. Even the best fantasy writers and their imagination can't beat this place.