House of the Virgin Mary

The house of the Virgin Mary is in Selcuk, near the resort of Kusadasi. Situated on the Aegean coast of  Turkey, many people visit the nearby ruins of Ephesus and do not go to the house which is a big shame.   I always combine it with my trips to Ephesus, because it is close by.  Most excursion shops in Kusadasi will sell Ephesus with a visit to the house of Virgin Mary included or you can make your own way by doing what I did and hiring a car.

Note : Do not try to walk to the house of the Virgin Mary from Ephesus because  it is in the mountains and you will reach there 24 hours later!  If you are staying in the resort of Kusadasi, it  is only a short distance to travel from there to the house and ruins.

The House of the Virgin Mary

It is believed to be the last resting place of Mary and if you are, a devout catholic you will be delighted to know that they also hold mass and regular services there. Several of the popes from Rome have visited the house as well.

Virgin Mary's House

We drove to the Virgin Mary’s house in a car, and there was no need to worry about parking spaces, as there was plenty although many tour coaches had parked up. From there it is easy to find your way around. First, you will come to the house. We entered and there was a nun praying so out of respect maintained silence.

christian church service in turkey

When you walk in, there are rows of candles to your left and right. You can light a candle and kneel to pray if you wish to. You come out of the house and then enter  the gardens.

Gardens and Water Fountains at the House of the Virgin Mary

The gardens contain  fountains of mountain spring water and we were told several stories about the spring water. The most popular story was that each tap resembled an aspect of life. One tap meant wealth would come your way; another tap meant health would come your way and the last one resembled fertility!

Wishing wall virgin mary

You will also see a wishing wall where people have tied napkins or scarves. The idea behind is to make a wish while tying your object. Finally is the baptism pool which you will see on your way out.

The house of the Virgin Mary is a quiet serene place and it lends weight to the story that Mary  spent part of her life in the ancient city of Ephesus. If you stay in the resort of Kusadasi, I strongly recommend visiting as it will only take half a day.

If you are catholic or Christian and looking for a church in a Muslim country, then the House of the virgin Mary near Kusadasi is a good place to start. Be aware though, that if you are attending the mass, to dress appropriately. They do not take too kindly to tourists dressed in bikini shorts and tops.

Virgin mary

Many thanks to my friend Pat for  the pictures.

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Hi. My name is Natalie Sayin and I am the author of The Turkish Travel Blog. I am an Internet addict with a passion for history. Read my story here or leave a comment below to join the discussions.
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  1. Lina D. Emory says

    Visiting the “home of the Holy Mother” presumed to be her domain in her remaining years of her life” was the highlight of our travel to Eastern Europe . It was a wonderful awesome trip. Getting inside the house gave me goosebumps, a experience in my life beyond words. I am just thankful to have the opportunity to come to Turkey and visit this place. I also drank from the fountain believed to be a source of miraculous healing and I sure do believe in faith that it does. In fact, I filled up some bottles and brought back home with me to California..

  2. Gloria Kelley says

    My son and I visited the site many years ago . We were alone and were greeted by the delicate fragrance of roses as we neared the statue of the Blessed Mother. We were in awe of this Holy experience and will hold that moment in our hearts forever.

  3. Carolyn Young says

    We visited many years and another life time ago on our way to Ephesus. I can remember the cool serenity on a baking hot August day.

    There was a young nun singing Ave Maria as we walked through. A spine-tingling moment which made distant religious roots from a far off time and land tangible. A few words from an old hymn we used to sing at school have just gone through my mind – “And did those feet in ancient times….”

    • says

      We met one of the nuns as well Carolyn. She was so friendly and loving. It was the highlight of the trip for me.

  4. says

    I love this place…it is so peaceful for me when I go. We did see a Nun but she was praying. I also fill up a few bottles of water to take back with me…….just the road going up the mountain freaks me out…..not use to those type of roads so high up. Thanks again for the great post.
    Erica wrote about..Snickerdoodles….A Christmas favorite.

    • Nat says

      Thank you very much for that Derya

  5. nancy torossian says

    thank you for all the good information. we will be traveling to turkey next year on a mediterranean cruise. How many miles up is the house of the virgin mary? I don’t care for heights. Thank you. Nancy, Michigan

    • says

      It is high in the mountains but don’t sit in the window seats for the coaches, as they drive up the mountain roads and you should be fine. Once there, is no fear of heights. Just beauty!

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