The Golden Road

Side is one of the best-known classical sites in Turkey, and was an ancient harbour whose name meant pomegranate. Side is a resort town on the southern coast of Turkey, near the villages of Manavgat and Selimiye, 75 km from Antalya) in the province of Antalya. It is located on the eastern part of the Pamphylian coast, which lies about 20 km east of the mouth of the Eurymedon River.

Alexander the Great occupied Side without a struggle in 333 BC. Alexander left only a single garrison behind to occupy the city. This occupation, in turn, introduced the people of Side to Hellenistic culture of the Greek Civilization, which flourished from the fourth century to the first century BC. After Alexander’s death, Side fell under the control of one of Alexander’s generals, Ptolemy I Soter, who declared himself king of Egypt in 305 BC. The Ptolemaic dynasty controlled Side until it was captured by the Seleucid Empire in the second century BC. Yet, despite these occupations, in the following years of the second century BC, Side managed to preserve some autonomy, grew prosperous, and became an important cultural center.