Things to do in Cesme, Izmir – Turkey

Things to do in Cesme, Izmir – Turkey

Çeşme is a coastal town and the administrative centre of the district of the same name in Turkey’s westernmost end, on a promontory on the tip of the peninsula which also carries the same name and which extends inland to form a whole with the wider Karaburun Peninsula. It is a popular holiday resort and the district center, where two thirds of the district population is concentrated.

Çeşme is located 85 km west of İzmir, the largest metropolitan center in Turkey’s Aegean Region. There is a six-lane highway connecting the two cities (Otoyol 32). Çeşme district has two neighboring districts, Karaburun to the north and Urla to the east, both of which are also part of İzmir Province. The name “Çeşme” means “fountain” and possibly draws reference from the many Ottoman fountains scattered across the city.

Under the Greeks and Romans in Classical antiquity its name was Cysus (Ancient Greek: Κύσος Kysos), possibly a mere locality at the time. Turkish sources always cited the town and the region as Çeşme (or Cheshme) which is originally a Persian word since the first settlement 2 km south of the present-day center (Çeşmeköy) founded by Tzachas and pursued for some time by his brother Yalvaç before an interlude until the 14th century. The name “Çeşme” means “spring, fountain” in Persian and possibly draws reference from the many Ottoman fountains scattered across the city.

A prized location of country houses and secondary residences especially for the well-to-do inhabitants of İzmir for more than a century, Çeşme perked up considerably in recent decades to become one of Turkey’s most prominent centers of international tourism. Many hotels, marinas, clubs, restaurants, boutique hotels, family accommodation possibilities (pansiyon) and other facilities for visitors are found in Çeşme center and in its surrounding towns and villages and the countryside, as well as very popular beaches.

Things to do in Cesme, Izmir – Turkey

Çeşme district has one depending township with own municipal administration, Alaçatı, where tourism is an equally important driving force as the district center area and which offers its own arguments for attracting visitors, as well as four villages: Ildırı on the coast towards the north, which is notable for being the location of ancient Erythrae, and three others which are more in the background, in terms both of their geographical location and renown: Germiyan, Karaköy and Ovacık, where agriculture and livestock breeding still forms the backbone of the economy.

Some andesite, lime and marble is also being quarried in Çeşme area, while the share of industrial activities in the economy remains negligible. In terms of livestock, an ovine breed known as “Sakız koyunu” in Turkish (translatable literally as “Chios Sheep”), more probably a crossbreeding between that island’s sheep and breeds from Anatolia, is considered in Turkey as native to Çeşme region where it yields the highest levels of productivity in terms of their meat, their milk, their fleece and the number of lambs they produce.

Preparations such as jam, ice cream and desserts, and even sauces for fish preparations, based on the distinctively flavored resin of the tree pistachia lentiscus from which it is harvested, are among nationally known culinary specialties of Çeşme. The adjacent Greek island of Chios (sakız in Turkish is the name for both Chios and mastic resin) is the source of mastic resin.

Things to do in Cesme, Izmir – Turkey

Some efforts to produce mastic resin in Çeşme,where ecological conditions are similar, were not continued. A number of efforts are being made to rehabilitate the potential presented by the mastic trees that presently grow in the wilderness, and to increase the number of cultivated trees, especially those planted by secondary-residence owners who grow them as a hobby activity. The fish is also abundant both in variety and quantity along Çeşme district’s coastline.

In relation to tourism, it is common for the resorts along Çeşme district’s 90 km coastline to be called by the name of their beaches or coves or the visitor’s facilities and attractions they offer, as in Şifne (Ilıca), famous both for its thermal baths and beach, and in Çiftlikköy (Çatalazmak), Dalyanköy, Reisdere, Küçükliman, Paşalimanı, Ayayorgi, Kocakarı, Kum, Mavi and Pırlanta beaches; Altunyunus, synonymous with a large hotel located in its cove; and Tursite, by the name of the villas located there. Some of these localities may not be shown on a map of administrative divisions The district area as a whole is one of the spots in Turkey where foreign purchases of real estate are concentrated at the highest levels.

The town of Çeşme lies across a strait facing the Greek island of Chios, which is at a few miles’ distance and there are regular ferry connections between the two centers, as well as larger ferries from and to Italy (Brindisi, Ancona and Bari) used extensively by Turks of Germany returning for their summer holidays.

Population: 27.796 (2007)

Altitude: Sea Level

Airport: Adnan Menderes Airport 90 Km.

Transfer: Taxi, mini bus, bus.

Min/max temperatures in centigrade: Jan 5/12; Peb 4/12; Mar 5/14; Apr 11/19; May 16/24; Jun 20/29; Ju122/32, Aug 22/32; Sep 19/28; Oct 16/24; Nov 11/18; Dec 8/14

City transport: Taxi, mini bus.

Sights and local attractions:Cesmc Castle, Ilica, Boyalik bayl, Dalyan and Sakizli koy, Şifne, Buyuk Liman, Pasha Liman, Ciftlikkoy and iırlanta Beach, Çata1azmak Beach, Ildiri (Erythrai), Alacati, Caravansarail.

Sightseeing Tours and Excursion:

1. Ephesus – Mary’s House

Visit the shrine of Virgin Mary; St. Paul, Temples, Library, Great Theatre, Stadium, Archeological Museum, Isabey Mosque, Basilica St. John, Temple of Diana.

2. Pergamon – Aesdapium

Visit Acropolis, Temple of Athena, Library, Royal Palace, Tempel of Trojan, Great Theatre, Tempel of Dyonysus, Altar of Zeus, Archaeological and Ethnographical Museum, Ruins of Aesclapium

Kusadasi, Turkey Sights and local attractions

Kusadasi, Turkey Sights and local attractions

Kuşadası is a resort town on Turkey’s Aegean coast, and the center of the seaside district of the same name within Aydın Province. Kuşadası is 95 km (59 mi) south of İzmir, and 71 km (44 mi) from Aydın. The municipality’s primary industry is tourism.

Kuşadası has a residential population of 64,359, which can rise to over half a million in the summer as a result of the large resort filling with tourists. This also includes the hotel and bar staff, construction workers, and drivers who are required to work in/for the restaurants and other services accommodating these visitors. In addition to tourists from overseas, there is also a significant community of foreigners residing in the area.

Places of Interest

The city walls – There were once three gates; one remains.[16]
Kaleiçi Camii – The mosque built in 1618 for Grand Vizier Öküz Kara Mehmed Pasha.

The Öküz Mehmed Pasha Caravanserai is near the docks. It was built in 1618 as a strong-room for the goods of seamen.

Güvercin Adası (“Pigeon Island” in English) – The peninsula/island at the end of the bay, which has a castle and swimming beaches, including a private beach and cafe with a view back across the bay to the harbour of Kuşadası. Public beaches are located at the back of the peninsula, towards the open sea.

Kirazli – Traditional Turkish village 12 kilometres (7.5 mi) from Kuşadası.

Yılancı Burnu – A second peninsula beyond Güvercin Ada. Possibly the location of the original settlement of Neopolis. Some walls are visible. There are beaches and beach clubs here.

Several aqua-parks with wave-pools and white-water slides are located near the town.

Ladies Beach – Very close to the town center, one of the primary tourist attractions.

Kadıkalesi – Venetian/Byzantine castle, 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) along the Kuşadası-Davutlar road.

Panionium – 25 km (16 mi) south of Kuşadası, situated along the Davutlar-Güzelçamlı road. Once the central meeting place of the Ionian League. The ruins are in poor condition and their authenticity is disputed.

Dilek Peninsula-Büyük Menderes Delta National Park – About 30 kilometres (19 mi) south of the city centre, the national park is adjacent to the town of Güzelçamlı. It has several coves, beaches, canyons, and a sink cave. It is one of the most diverse and protected national parks in Turkey.

Population: 65,764 (2000)

Altitude: Sea Level

Airport: Adnan Menderes Airport 70 Km.

Transfer: Bus, mini bus, taxi.

Min/max temperatures in centigrade: Jan 6/12; Feb 5/12; Mar 6/14; Apr 12/20; May 17/25; Jun 22/32; Ju125/3S; Aug 25/3S; Sep 20/30; Oct 16/25; Nov 12/1S; Dec S/14.

City transport: Bus, Mini bus, taxi.

Sights and local attractions: Ephesus, Milet, Didyma, Priene, Pamukkale, Bodrum, Samos (Greece)

Sightseeing Tours and Excursion:

1. Ephesus – Mary’s House (5 hours – daily)

Visit the shrine of Virgin Mary; St. Paul, Temples, Library, Great Theatre, Stadium, Archeological Museum, Isabey Mosque, Basilica St. John, Temple of Diana.

2. Priene – Milletus – Didyma (5 hours – daily)

Priene – Theatre, Temple of Athena, Altar of Zeus.
Miletus – Theatre, Byzantine Fortress, Mosque.
Didyma – Temple of Apollo.

3. Pamukkale (12 hours)

Hierapolis, Karahayit, Amphitheatre, Thermal Pool.

4. Bodrum (12 hours)

Bafa lake, Bodrum Castle, Boat Tour.

Tourism Office: Liman Cad. Iskele Meydani Kusadasi

Ephesus Izmir Sights and local attractions

Ephesus Izmir Sights and local attractions

Ephesus; ultimately from Hittite Apasa) was an ancient Greek city on the coast of Ionia, three kilometres southwest of present-day Selçuk in İzmir Province, Turkey. It was built in the 10th century BC on the site of the former Arzawan capital by Attic and Ionian Greek colonists. During the Classical Greek era it was one of the twelve cities of the Ionian League. The city flourished after it came under the control of the Roman Republic in 129 BC. According to estimates, Ephesus had a population of 33,600 to 56,000 people in the Roman period, making it the third largest city of Roman Asia Minor after Sardis and Alexandria Troas.

The city was famed for the Temple of Artemis (completed around 550 BC), one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. In 268 AD, the Temple was destroyed or damaged in a raid by the Goths. It may have been rebuilt or repaired but this is uncertain, as its later history is not clear. Emperor Constantine the Great rebuilt much of the city and erected new public baths. Following the Edict of Thessalonica from Emperor Theodosius I, what remained of the temple was destroyed in 401 AD by a mob led by St. John Chrysostom. The town was partially destroyed by an earthquake in 614 AD. The city’s importance as a commercial center declined as the harbor was slowly silted up by the Küçükmenderes River.

Ephesus was one of the seven churches of Asia that are cited in the Book of Revelation. The Gospel of John may have been written here. The city was the site of several 5th century Christian Councils (see Council of Ephesus). It is also the site of a large gladiators’ graveyard. The ruins of Ephesus are a favourite international and local tourist attraction, partly owing to their easy access from Adnan Menderes Airport.

Population: 33.594 (2000)

Altitude: Sea Level

Airport: Adnan Menderes Airport 50Km

Transfer: Bus, mini bus

Average temperature in centigrade: Jan 6/13; Feb 5/10 ; Mar 4/14; Apr 10/19; May 15/ 22; Jun 20/27; Ju120/30; Aug 22/32; Sep 18/27; Oct 15/22; Nov ıo/18; Dec 7/10.

City transport: Taxi , mini bus, car rental

Sights and local attractions: Several archaelogical sights in vicinity of Selcuk such as the shrine of Virgin Mary, Ephesus, Didyma, Miletus, Piriene, Hierapolis

Sightseeing Tours and Excursion:

1. Ephesus – Mary’s House

(5 hours – daily)

Visit the shrine of Virgin Mary; St. Paul, Temples, Library, Great Theatre, Stadium, Archeological Museum, İsabey Mosque, Basilica St. John, Temple of Diana.

2. Priene – Milletus – Didyma

(8 hours – daily)

Priene – Theatre, Temple of Athena, Altar of Zeus.
Miletus – Theatre, Byzantine Fortress, Mosque.
Didyma – Temple of Apollo.

3. Hierapolis

(8 hours, daily)

Theatre, Temple of Apollo, thermal baths, Plutonium, Necropolis, Karahayit

4. Aphrodisias and Nysa

(10 hours, daily)

Theatre, Agora, thermal bath of Hadrian, The Odeion, Sculptor’s workshop, The Bishop’s Balace, temple of Aphrodite, the stadium, the museum

Torism Office: Ataturk Mh. Agora Carsisi, No. 35