Troy, Turkey, the celebrated city of Homer's The Iliad and The Odyssey and of Virgil's The Aeneid, was long considered fictional until German businessman and archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann discovered its ruins in the 1870s.

It's near the modern city of Hisarlik, about 170 mi/275 km southwest of Istanbul. The site holds nine settlements, dating from the Stone Age to the Roman Empire (plus a not-too-convincing replica of the Trojan Horse—you'd think someone would have seen the soldiers through the windows).

Despite its being rebuilt nine times, there's very little left of Troy now. Plan a few hours to walk through the archaeological site, but hire a guide—otherwise, you'll have a hard time imagining what the city once looked like.

Overnight in Canakkale, a harbor town with a lively waterfront promenade (and a strong military presence) on the Dardanelles Strait, located 20 mi/32 km north of Troy. The views of the strait helps compensate for the dull urban architecture.

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