The city-born with extraordinary love; Kaunos

Kaunos, a city born 3,000 years ago with extraordinary love, welcomes millions of tourists today. Here is Kaunos, the city born of the love of Byblis and Kaunos...

Visitors who travel about 10 minutes by tour boats to reach Kaunos ancient city, which is located within the borders of Çandir Neighborhood, open the doors of the 3,000-year-old ancient city after walking for about 15 minutes on the tree-lined road.

Visitors are fascinated by 2,400-year-old rock tombs, breathe in the 5,000-seat theater, wander around the basilica, bathhouse, and agora, examine 1,300-year-old mosaics, and take pictures at the Holy Temple of Demeter.

The ancient city, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is also a port city where salt was produced and traded during the Lycian-Karya period. About 50,000 people visit the ancient city, known for its rock tombs around it.

The city of Kaunos, which was in the Archaic, Classical, Hellenistic, Roman, and Byzantine periods, was later abandoned. Excavations started in 1966 in the Ancient City of Kaunos and are still ongoing.

There are various legends about the establishment of the Ancient City of Kaunos. The most well-known of these is the myth about the loves of Bybilis and Kaunos, twin brothers.

Legend has it that King Miletos of Karya, son of Apollo, has twins. He named his daughter Byblis and the man Kaunos. One of the twin brothers who grew up together, Byblis falls in love with Kaunos and confesses his love by writing a letter to Kaunos. Kaunos, on the other hand, greets Byblis's feelings with anger and disgust. Not wanting to see his twin again, Kaunos leaves his father's country with those who love him. Today, he came to Kaunos on the banks of the Dalyan Canal and founded this historical city named after him.

Byblis throws himself over a high rock, wanting to end his life because of his unrequited love. But nymphes (i.e. water nymphs) are very pitiful to Byblis. And they turn it into a spring.

Byblis' tears become a river, and the Dalyan Canals appear.

Photos: Mete Sonmez

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