İzmir, the third largest city in our country, is located in the Aegean region. Extremely modern, the city is also one of the important destinations that holds the pulse of tourism. As a harbor city, it has hosted many different civilizations throughout history and undertook the task of being the most important city center in the Ionian and Roman periods. Balıkesir is in the north of Izmir, Manisa in the east, and Aydın in the south. The western part of the city opens to the Aegean Sea and hosts the most preferred coasts of our country for summer tourism.
Climate and Local Cuisine
The Mediterranean climate dominates in İzmir, which can be visited every month of the year. Although it is hot in the summers, it has a mild climate compared to the surrounding provinces due to the constant winds. In winter, snowfall and frost events are not seen much. Therefore, sightseeing tours are popular during all seasons.
İzmir Cuisine is a combination of Aegean, Mediterranean, and Greek cuisine, and will sweeten your palate with its rich menus. Olive oil is mainly used for seafood and vegetables. In addition, local herbs and fruits can be consumed all seasons of the year. İzmir’s authentic flavors include zerde, İzmir meatballs, papaz stew, sura, rice tomato soup, mücver, gerdan dessert, radika salad, and fresh green beans with olive oil. Salads with herbs such as chicory, ivy, and nettle are famous, and the meals like leek, eggplant börek, and keşkek should definitely be tried. You should also taste the famous İzmir dessert lokma and tulum.
Places to Visit
İzmir is not only the city center, but is also known for summer tourism, extreme sports, and history. For this reason, we recommend that you reserve a couple of days for a tour of İzmir.
- İzmir Clock Tower: The clock tower located in the famous Konak Square of İzmir is the symbol of the city. It was built in 1901 during the reign of Sultan Abdulhamit II.
- Historic elevator: Located in the Karataş district of İzmir, the lift connects the lower street to the upper street with an altitude of 58 meters. The view is spectacular.
- Kemeraltı Bazaar: The historic Kemeraltı Bazaar of İzmir is one of the busiest and most active places in the region. Many different shops with handcrafted ornaments and gifts can be found at Kemeraltı Bazaar.
- Kızlarağası Inn: The inn, built in the 1700s, is a beautiful building with columns and arches, and today it houses copper and silk shops.
- Kadifekale: Kadifekale, which was built in the 3rd century BC, has been taken over by Genoese in 1400s.
- İzmir Archaeology Museum
- Agora ruins: Agora ruins in Namazgah district dates back to the 2nd century. Sculptures, altars, and columns are impressive, especially for photographers.
- Konak Pier: Konak Pier, which is used as a shopping center today, is an extremely beautiful building, designed by French architect Gustave Eiffel.
- Atatürk Youth Center
- Piriştina City Archive Museum
- İnkaya Cave
Districts to Visit
- Dikili: Ancient City of Atarneus is one of the important locations of the 4th century BC. Çandarlı Castle, Pitane Antique City, Nebiler Waterfall, and Garip Island are among the touristic spots in the district.
- Bergama: Serapis Temple, Elaia Antique City, Allianoi Antique City, Bergama Antique City, and Pergamum Museum should be seen.
- Karaburun: Karaburun Peninsula, which has hosted civilizations such as Greek, Roman, Persian, and Hittite, is a remarkable holiday destination with its natural beauty.
- Urla: Güvendik Hill in Urla, which is among the favorite holiday resorts of recent years, Klazomenai Antique City, Malgaca Springs, Urla Peninsula, Yassıca Island, and Karantina Island are also ideal for sea tours.
- Çeşme: One of the most important seaside resorts of Turkey, Çeşme has many important bays and beaches. Alaçatı has a beautiful sandy beach with its tranquil nature. Alaçatı houses and Çeşme spas must be seen.
- Selçuk: The ancient city of Ephesus, which has become the symbol of our country, is located in Selçuk. In addition, the Seven Sleepers Cave, Double Churches, Kurudağ Cave, Saadet Hatun Hammam Museum, St. John Church, Kazakh Valley, Ayasuluk Hill, Lebedos Ancient City, Hadrian Temple, and Klaros Ancient City are must–sees. You can also visit historic Şirince village for local vines and traditional houses.
- Seferihisar: While in İzmir, do not forget to visit one of the cittaslows in Turkey.
The Alaçatı Herb Festival is a beautiful event with delicious herbs and vegetables that is held every April. The International Izmir Theater Days are organized in December each year. Regional events such as Bayraklı Camel Wrestling, Balkan Festival, and Olive Festival are being held continuously. Nazarköy Bead Festival is a festival where beaded handwork is exhibited.
How to Get There
The easiest way to get to Izmir is to fly into Adnan Menderes Airport, which can be reached by some international flights. In addition, you can reach Izmir by following Ankara, Bursa, and Çanakkale road transportation lines. You can also access Izmir through various sea cruises.