Northern Aegean (Kuzey Ege) is the northern part of Aegean Turkey.
- 1 Edremit is the main town inland from the string of beach resorts along the Gulf of Edremit.
- 2 Assos or Behramkale is a pleasant village with an acropolis and temple to Athena.
- 3 Babakale is the most westerly point of mainland Asia, with a late-Ottoman castle.
- 4 Ayvalık is a large resort with much elegant Greek and neo-classical architecture.
- 5 Bergama stands beneath the Roman citadel of Pergamon.
- 6 Dikili is a fishing village with charming old cobbled streets and traditional architecture.
Other destinations edit
Aeolis was a collection of city states covering this part of the coast and the nearby Greek islands, from about the 8th century BC until it was absorbed into the Roman Empire. It had a series of coves and ports around the large, V-shaped Gulf of Edremit, but right into modern times there was poor inland transport and little industry. There was small-scale agriculture, and olive groves lining the hills until giving way to pine forests on the heights. This region has never attracted western mass tourism, the big resorts are a long way south, but it did draw domestic tourism and second-home owners. This has here and there meant sympathetic restoration of old Greek and Ottoman buildings, but mostly the result is an eczema of modern mediocrity all along the shoreline. You need to get inland to find picturesque villages amid the olives and cypresses.
The climate is slightly cooler and wetter than the rest of the Aegean, but snow is uncommon in the lowlands.
Get in edit
- Edremit Körfez Airport (EDO IATA) is south of Edremit. It has daily flights from Istanbul.
- By road from Istanbul take O7 and O5 (both toll) past Bursa to Balıkesir then branch for the coast on D230.
- Highway E87 connects Çanakkale to the north and Izmir to the south. From the north an alternative to boring tunnels is the winding and narrow old road passing Mount Ida, through scenic pine forests.
- Buses ply all the main highways, usually heading to Izmir.
- Ferries sail to Ayvalik from the Greek island of Lesvos, daily in summer.
Get around edit
Buses connect all the main towns, and Pergamon is a short taxi ride from Bergama town, but for anywhere else you need your own wheels.
- Beaches are mostly rocky, but the larger coastal towns have facilities for water sports.
Lots of little eateries in all the towns, no stand-out. It's all trad Turkish / East Med fare without other cuisines.
No stand-alone bars but many cafes serve alcohol.
Stay safe edit
Obvious stuff: beware traffic (including water traffic in the sea) and safeguard valuables. Use sun protection.
Go next edit
- North brings you into Southern Marmara: highlights are Troy the target of a legendary war, Çanakkale where you cross the Dardanelles to the battlefields of Gallipoli, and Bursa the first city held by the Ottomans.
- South brings you to Central Aegean. Izmir is its bustling city and Ephesus is an extensive Roman ruin. Beach resorts are small and aimed at local tourism, until you reach raucous Kuşadası.
- Along the Troad Coast is an itinerary from Çanakkale in Southern Marmara to Assos via several historical sites along the coast.
- Istanbul to Izmir is a choice of itineraries between these two major cities.
- Lesvos is reached by ferry from Ayvalık and has ferries to other Greek islands.