Built in 351 B.C. to house the tomb of King Mausolus, the Persian King of Caria, the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus was not only the grandest tomb of its time but it also gave its name to all those that followed. The masterpiece of Greek architects Satyros and Pytheos, the elaborate monument was once a temple of sculpted columns and white marble, standing over 50 meters tall and topped with a sculpture of a horse-drawn carriage.
Because the mausoleum is known as one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, its ruins are immensely popular in modern-day Bodrum, despite being almost completely destroyed by an earthquake in 1304. Today, the final remaining pieces of the walls can be found around the landmark Myndos Gate, while the best-preserved remains are now housed in London’s British Museum. Some of the rocks rescued from the wreckage of the mausoleum were also used to build the seafront Castle of St Peter.
The Mausoleum of Halicarnassus is located in central Bodrum, about a five-minute walk north from the harbor. It is open to visitors Tuesday through Sunday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Entrance is 8 YTL.