Help a Reader Travel: Izmir, Turkey

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Welcome to another post of helping a reader travel! This weekly post is to help readers get a slew of travel advice from thousand of Deals We Like blog readers. Thus far, we’ve been able to help other readers travel to Maui, The Greek Islands, Pacific Coast Highway, Argentina / Buenos Aires, Costa Rica, Cape Cod & The Islands, Iceland, Geneva, Canadian Rockies, Israel, Peru / Inca Trail, Stockholm, Chicago, Paris, Hanoi, Austin, Puerto Rico, Bruges, Salzburg, Las Vegas, Jamaica, India/Golden Triangle, Auckland, Singapore, Moscow, The Oregon Coast, Seattle, Portland, Hawaii Islands, Alaska Skiing, Brazil, Prague, Budapest, Paraguay, Cabo San Lucas, Edinburgh, San Diego, Hilton Head, Dubrovnik, Tanzania, The Seychelles, Belize, Miami, Vienna, London, Tahiti, Mt. Kilimanjaro, Burgundy, Charleston, Savannah, and Italy (including Rome, Venice, Florence, Milan, Bologna, Sicily)

A few weeks ago I covered Turkey as a few readers reached out wanting some guidance on how to plan out a 1-2 week trip traveling around the country. While I already did a post dedicated to Istanbul two years ago, I wanted to hit on the other major tourist cities in Turkey. This will include Cappadocia, Izmir, Bodrum, and Antalya (let me know if there are any other cities you want me to cover). 

This week is going to be dedicated on Izmir, Turkey. Here are some things I am sure readers will want suggestions on:

  • Where to stay?
  • How many days to stay
  • How to get there from Istanbul
  • Sites to see
  • Anything else you might think is valuable!

Also, if you have any upcoming travel where you need some help, feel free to email me at dealswelike@gmail.com to be a featured “Help a Reader Travel” Monday special. Thanks!

Comments

  1. Hey all,

    Are you set on staying in Izmir? If you’re planning on going to Ephesus, Selcuk is actually more convenient. I flew into Izmir and took a transfer to my hotel in Urkmez. About a 30 minute drive but worth it for the convenience when you wake up. The hotel I stayed at was called the Urkmez Hotel. “Cem” the owner is unbelievably helpful. He took me to Kusadasi, bought me pistachio gelato and got a friend to show me Ephesus. I had the best breakfast of my Turkish vacation here. Fresh vegetables, delicious omelet and turkish coffee. Unbeatable price if you’re looking to save and still be comfortable.

  2. Izmir is probably the most “liberal” city and most European feeling city in Turkey. Spending time strolling the waterfront is lovely, as is the view from Alexander’s fortress above the city. The walk up to the fortress (kadifekale) is very steep but meanders through old neighborhoods for a nice treat. Izmir is Biblical Smyrna. The remains of the old agora are minimal but fun nonetheless to explore as you get a sense of how they were constructed with the use of arches. Also a great gateway for exploring ancient Ephesus.

    It is a quick flight from Istanbul. Random dates in April reveal fares of about 150 TL on Onur air (Turkish is always a bit higher) which translates currently to less that $75 R/T!

  3. My mom is from Izmir and I’ve been going since I was about 6 years old. Even so, I don’t think its a great destination for tourists. It’s a nice as a way to see a real turkish city and not tourist traps and Donna C highlights some good activities. To those I’d add, walking the waterfront and the Konak bazar. You can easily get to Ephesus and Selcuk within an hour or so or consider going out the Cesme peninsula to Alacati and Cesme for some beautiful beach towns. But be warned that it’s upmarket and pretty pricey. As for transportation to Istanbul, you should fly. Flights on Onur Air, Atlas and Pegasus are dirt cheap. Just make sure your flight goes to Ataturk airport and not Sabiha Gokcen as that’s quite far on the asian side. I think Pegasus only flies to Sabiha Gokcen.

  4. We stayed at a SPG property roughly 40 minutes from Izmir. Worth the drive if you can arrange transportation.

    2-3 days is enough.

    Fly

    Ephesus, Izmir city, shopping!

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