Sütunlu Cadde (translated as columned street) can be found in the Soli area of Mersin. Originally a 350 meter (.22 mile) street leading from the ancient city of Soloi (Greek: Ʃoloi) down to it’s port, the column lined street would have been quite a welcome for visitors coming into the city from their ships.
In it’s prime, the street would have been lined with more than 200 pillars. Each pillar had a shelf about 4.5 meters above the ground that would have held statues to various animals, rulers, and supposed deities. On the sides of the columned street, there were other buildings and storage structures, the foundation of which is still viewable on the east side.
Currently, only 44 columns remain in four groupings. At the south end of the street, there are seven columns on the west and six on the east. Further down the street, there is a grouping of four, then later a grouping of 3 on the east side of the street. Finally, there is a grouping of 24 columns at the northernmost end of the street on the east side. While some of the columns still have the shelves in tact, only one still has a statue remaining (on the south and west side). There are a number of capitals and column sections set up on the south and east side for close up viewing.
The columns’ capitals are in the form of the Corinthian style, meaning they are decorated with acanthus leaves and scrolls leading up to the abacus (that is the flat part on top of the capital of the column that would have supported the roof or arches that sat on top of the columns).
This site is currently surrounded by a security fence on all sides so that the columns cannot be directly accessed, but as mentioned earlier, some capitals and column sections are assembled outside the fence on the south and east side for up close viewing.
See the map below for directions. I would recommend coming to the site from the south entrance, then you are able to walk north from there and see the whole of the structure.
There is a ruin hidden among a grove of fruit trees about 320 meters (.2 miles) to the west of the north end of the columned street. Click here for a map.
Also, there is a beach 100 meters to the southeast of this structure, as well as a tree covered park. Click here for a map.
If you’re looking for a good Turkish restaurant that is close, visit Yedi Kardeşler. It is only 1.3 kilometers (.8 miles) from the site. Click here for a map.
If you are a Geocacher, there is one here at the columned street. Here is the link.