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What to do in Izmir?

An ancient city founded by the Aegean Sea, Izmir is full of rich history, and an up and coming infrastructure in Turkey. It endured the conflicts of Turkey’s Independence War in 1922, as well as being founded by the Trojans of 3000 B.C. Izmir is a highly touristic location as well as a city full of villas for private space. You will experience a warm summer throughout the year, and the beaches most of the year. The city now competes with Istanbul and Ankara in popularity, and its touristic attraction alone is enough to keep the province interesting for decades.

Downtown Izmir

The province’s main Archaeology Museum is full of artifacts from ancient diggings around the region. You could have a photo taken at the symbolic clock tower dating from 1901 before walking to Kızlarağası Han, where a historical Ottoman marketplace throughout the coast still operates. By the Ethnographic Museum, the streets offer attires as well as local crafts from Ottoman Era. 

For shopping and a nightlife scene, the Alsancak district offers rooftops of the complete city view, where the seaside restaurants serve Turkish mezes alongside fresh seafood. For a couple's adventure, the Cable Car in the Balçova district promises a romantic afternoon through fantastic landscapes and cafeterias on an easy route.

Travel Outside the City to Step in History and Nature

Izmir Wildlife Park

The Wildlife Park goes to great lengths to detach itself from the term of "zoo". It became a paradise for animals to live in settings mirroring their natural habitat. From birds to reptiles and giraffes, 138 different species of animals are available to view up close, while elephants and a few carnivores wander around wide spaces so seeing them is not guaranteed. A café selling refreshments and lunch ensures families enjoy a full day out with happy kids.


As a coastal district of Izmir, Urla is a highly historical town. Nowadays, the beaches alone are enough to draw global attraction in the summer season. Urla is a rather quiet town compared to other parts of Izmir. The villas here are an excellent opportunity for those who like to have peaceful and quiet days. In Urla, you could Visit the Ancient City of Klazomenai, and step on the same lands as people from 4000 BC. If history becomes tiresome, you can go for a swim faster than anywhere else in the province! 


Meaning “Fountain” in Persian, this district of the western coastal city is quiet in the morning, and alive at night. It receives the name from the various fountains found around the town left from the Ottoman era. With a population of 20 thousand, the town gets annual tourists just to see the famous Çeşme Castle. It is also possible to travel between Greek Island Chios

The Çeşme Castle is a monument left from the Ottoman Empire’s Beyazid II. In the past, the castle used to protect the town from weather conditions, as well as the enemy ships. Nowadays, it operates as a museum showcasing archeological findings from the ancient civilizations around.

Ancient City of Ephesus is only 156 km away from the district. This ruin from the old world used to be the trading center of the region. It contains the region’s one of the largest theater, as well as the second-largest city-state. The travel time between Ephesus and Çeşme is one and a half hours, so be sure to plan your schedule accordingly.


Home to the temple of Apollo, the statue of Medusa, as well as the world-famous beach Altınkum, Didim is a district of Aydın, but only 3 hours of car ride away from Izmir. It is located south of İzmir and north of Muğla. Although it is a small district with 74 thousand people, Didim receives a high number of tourists in the summer. It shares the climate with other Aegean provinces and can have windy nights. 

The Temple of Apollon; was the gathering location for those who wished to connect with the god of sun, music, arts, prophecy, and plague.

Altınkum Beach; Meaning “Golden Sand”, this blue flagged beach is one of the clearest to swim in all Turkey. Its quite shallow and long waters make a perfect spot for water sports, as well as the enjoyments for families.

Akbük Cove; As the deserted cove of the province, Akbük inhabits an emerald-colored rock formations under the sea. Its short distance to the district makes this cove a must-see location.


Now a district of Aydın province, Kuşadası was once the central trading zone for sailing merchants. It was the port that opened the Aegean Sea to the Mediterranean. It is located directly by the southern coastal lines of Izmir. Kuşadası was thought to be found in 11th century B.C. by Ions, and it was the home for many ancient civilizations afterward. The gulf of Kuşadası continues to be a highly touristic location. 

Ancient History; It is believed that Ionians established the first society of the district by the name of Neopolis. You can still see their ruins by the tip of the half-island. The ancient Greek king Agamemnon has built his town there with the name of Pygale. 

The Last Home of Mary; Through various rumors and legends, it is believed that the last home of the Virgin Mary is located near Kuşadası. Although it is a relatively new discovery, the remains of the house was visited by various Popes, as well as millions of people from different religions.

The Temple of Artemis; A remnant of the Ancient Greeks in Ephesus, it was the shrine to pray on the goddess Artemis. It was destroyed by both enemies and natural causes, arson, and rebuilt multiple times. You can still visit the remains of the temple in Ephesus.

Even though Izmir is one of the three metropolises in Turkey, what makes the province unique from others is immediately noticeable to first-timers. Patriotic locals adore their secluded Turkish Culture, yet historically have always adopted global cultures, arts, and fashion trends faster than even Istanbul, making them a community of leaders.

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