My Favorite Accessible Ancient Ruins
Ancient ruins are some of the most challenging attractions that I encounter in Europe, but they are definitely doable in a wheelchair. Ruins are scattered all across Europe…from Stonehenge in the North to Pompeii in the South….from Pont du Gard in the West to Hagia Sophia in the East. Research accessibility before your trip and you can be in for a real treat when marveling at incredible monuments to ancient civilizations! Here are four of my favorite accessible ancient ruins in Europe:
The Acropolis in Athens
One of the most iconic ruins in Europe, the Greek Acropolis towers over the city of Athens. Reaching the top of the Acropolis to view the Parthenon is possible in a wheelchair by ascending a long winding road, taking a wheelchair lift (shown in the photo below), and using a private elevator. Non-wheelchair users may need to reserve use of the elevator in advance (the staff try to prevent people who are too lazy to climb steps from abusing it).
The Ephesus Ruins in Turkey
When St. Paul wrote his “letter to the Ephesians”, this is who he was writing it to. Although only ruins remain, this was one of the most important cities in the Mediterranean 1900 years ago. Lots of uneven terrain and a downhill slope make this challenging (view my video and you’ll understand). Nevertheless, some of the best parts can be visited in a wheelchair.
The Roman Forum in Rome
While the Colosseum is more famous, the nearby Roman Forum is where the history occurred. When I visited two years ago, an elevator had been installed which wasn’t there the first time I visited.
The Pompeii Ruins near Naples
From a research perspective, the wonderfully preserved Roman resort city of Pompeii reveals more about Roman life than anywhere else. The ruins were buried in 79 AD and remained preserved for more than 1700 years. Disabled access is very poor through most of the city, but wheelchair accessible paths are available.
Did you know?
Did you know that you can easily visit ALL of these ruins with an accessible Mediterranean cruise? Several cruise lines offer “Grand Mediterranean” cruise itineraries that visit all 4 of the ruins described above (plus a lot more). Contact me or contact Donna to help you choose a cruise itinerary that visits accessible ports (and avoid the wrong ones)! When you book a cruise through Sage Traveling, our accessible hotel recommendations and city accessibility guides are free!
John Sage, Founder and President of Sage Traveling