Wandering in John the Evangelist's Ruins in Selcuk, Turkey
St. John's Basilica is most evocative at sunset. The roof fell in centuries ago during one of Turkey's countless earthquakes, but the pink clouds and pale blue sky overhead are worthy substitutes for the long-gone Byzantine frescoes. It's odd to have such a place to yourself. The mountain and Aegean views are enough reason for tourists to see this place. The greatest significance of the basilica, however, lies in its status as the last resting place of St. John—one of the evangelists who wrote the first four books of the New Testament. St. Mark and St. Peter both enjoy lavish cathedrals in Venice and Rome. Saint John's monument is silence, and a jumble of splendid ruins. Wandering about in peace until the sky turns dark is one of Turkey's most poignant experiences.