The second largest city of İzmir is a great way to start your coastal tour of Turkey. Locals and tourists from all over Europe fill this city during the peak summer months from June to August. Having spent a whole day in İzmir visiting all the sights, it was time to move on to the next coastal town of Kuşadası (pronounced kusha-da-suh).
Kuşadası is the base of many other sights and towns nearby – the Roman ruins of Ephesus (Efes), town of Selçuk, and hill-station town of Şirince.
The problem is reaching İzmir Otogar (bus station) from the city center – which lies 6km north east of the city and although there are plenty of dolmuş that make the journey there, just inquire at one of the various bus companies’ offices for free rides to the bus station. Hotel Guzel was close to the Basmane metro station and around the circle from the station, Metro bus company runs free Metro shuttle buses to the İzmir Otogar every 30 minutes. Just get in that free shuttle!
The free shuttle took about 15 minutes to reach the bus station, which has the offices of all the bus companies. I decided to travel with Kamil Koç (in Turkish & English) buses that takes less than 2 hours to reach Kuşadası otogar and costs TL 10. Kamil Koç buses are equipped with toilets, wifi and on-board snack service (coffee, tea, biscuits, water). The buses to Kuşadası run every hour from İzmir Otogar. Having missed the 10am bus by a few minutes, it was going to be the next one at 11am.
Other than being a coastal town and a base to go to Ephesus, Selçuk and Şirince, there’s not much to do in Kuşadası. And as with any other coastal city in Turkey, Kuşadası has abundance of hotels, many of which don’t come cheap, especially because of the ship-load of tourists that either arrive or take the 2-hour ferry ride from/to Samos, Greece.
After checking in, I walked to the city center for sending postcards and getting stamps in my Postal Stamps Travelogue book. Next to the post office was the Wednesday flee market that sells everything from clothes to souvenirs.
Lunch was at Metin Usta Cafe along the main road leading to the promenade – Tavuk (chicken) kebab that comes with fries, pita bread, cheeses and çay (tea).
Post lunch, I headed back to the hotel for a quick nap since it was too hot in the day to walk around the city. And after the nap, I walked over to the castle which was under renovation, hence closed.
Post sunset, the weather was just perfect for a long walk along the promenade, planning my next two days in Ephesus & around, and Pamukkale. Sat by the pier, talked to some locals about the history of the city and country; and calling it an early day, headed to Damla restaurant by the pier for a sumptuous meal – grilled calamari, sheesh kebab and some fantastic Turkish music.
Note: All values in USD, unless otherwise mentioned, are approximate and based on the exchange rate at the time of publishing. Each cost is for one adult. The exchange rate at the time of publishing is assumed to be USD 1 = TRY 1.80.
|Bus from Izmir to Kusadasi||TL 10 or $5.60||One way is TL 10.|
|Lunch at Metin Usta Cafe||TL 10 or $5.60|
|Hotel Stella||€60 or $82||€20 per night for a single bedroom with bathroom. For three nights.|
|Dinner at Damla Restaurant||TL 55 or $30.50|
|Snacks & water||TL 5 or $2.80|
|Toilets||TL 2 or $1.10|
|Total Costs||$147.60||Per person|
|Overall Costs||$1,920.40||Per person|
« PREVIOUS – Day 4
Coastal town featuring thermal baths & castle.
İzmir to Kuşadası
Traveling from İzmir to Kuşadası & spending day there.
Day 6 – NEXT »
Ephesus, Selçuk, ŞirinceVisiting Efes & towns of Selçuk & Şirince.
Visiting Efes & towns of Selçuk & Şirince.