Izmir is a rapidly growing city on the Central Aegean coast of Turkey. The third largest city in Turkey with a population of around 3.7 million, the second biggest port after Istanbul, and a very good transport hub. Once the ancient city of Smyrna, it is now a modern, developed, and busy commercial center, set around a huge bay and surrounded by mountains.
The city has a lot of traditional buildings combined with modern structures. One interesting part is the 18th century market, which is combined with traditional mosques/churches/synagogues. The atmosphere here is more Mediterranean than European.
History of Izmir
The history of Izmir stretches back to around 3000 BC when the Trojans founded the city in Tepekule in the northern suburb of Bayraklı, where is now the “Eski Smyrna” museum. This was the Smyrna that is the supposed birthplace of Homer; a common and consistent tradition connects Homer with the valley of Smyrna and the banks of the river Meles. The Aeolians, the first Greek settlers, were eventually superseded by the (also Greek) Ionians, and then the Lydians destroyed the city around 600 BC before a brief recovery following Alexander the Great’s arrival in 334 BC.
After his death, Alexander’s generals followed his wishes and re-established Smyrna on the shadow of Mount Pagos (Kadifekale), and the city then prospered under the Romans. It was destroyed by an earthquake in 178 AD but later reconstructed and became a major commercial port. After the Byzantines, the city had a turbulent time under the Arabs, Seljuks, Crusaders and Mongols, until Mehmet I incorporated it into the Ottoman Empire in 1415.
Under Suleyman the Magnificent, Smyrna became a thriving and sophisticated city and a huge trading center, despite its frequent earthquakes. It was cosmopolitan, with mainly Greek Orthodox and also Jews and Muslims, and many languages were spoken among locals and visiting traders.
Following World War I and the defeat of the Ottoman Empire, on the basis of a major Greek-speaking population in the area, the Allies gave Greece a mandate over Izmir. Greece thereby took control of the Aegean area, and marched on Ankara. Led by Kemal Atatürk the Turkish army counter-attacked, in what became the War of Turkish Independence, and regained their territory, but a huge fire broke out which destroyed 70% of Izmir.
Atatürk formally took Izmir on 9 September 1922 and this is celebrated as the date of the city’s independence. As part of the peace deal, Greeks in Izmir were compulsorily re-settled in Greece, while Turks in Greece (especially around Thessaloniki, Atatürk’s own birthplace) were compulsorily re-settled in Turkey. This ended the multicultural
Climate in Izmir
Izmir experiences a typical, subtropical Mediterranean climate, with hot, sunny summers and rainy winters, but being the northernmost major city in Turkey to do so, it does have some transitional qualities, such as the slightly cooler and cloudier winters. , and the lower seasonal temperature range, which is due to the fact that Izmir is located at a latitude of 36°N, well north of the Mediterranean climate’s main regions. Izmir experiences a wet winter followed by a hot summer, with an average of 2,020mm (81 inches) of precipitation per year. The city has moderately cold winters , with an average high of 6.9 Celsius (44 Fahrenheit) in January and a low of 0.4 Celsius (32 Fahrenheit).
Izmir has an annual precipitation level that is higher than the other Aegean cities, which mostly lie on the coast where fog is less frequent. Izmir also has a relative humidity rate of 18 to 50 percent compared to the 85 to 90 percent that is found in the other Aegean cities. This relative humidity can lead to fog.The city has more than 70 lakes, 8 rivers and over 10,000 well-preserved ancient water wells that were used for irrigation during ancient times. The most important freshwater body of the city is Lake Iznik which covers an area.
Summers are hot and rainless, especially in July and August. Summer highs vary around 30-35°C, and with a moderate amount of humidity, perceived temperatures can easily reach 38°C or above most years.
Winters are generally mild to cool, with occasional heavy rains. Temperatures do see the freezing mark, however, this almost always happens on clear, windless nights when there’s no chance of snowfall. As a consequence, Izmir averages only around one to three days of snowfall per year and virtually no days with snow cover. The rest of winter brings comfortable highs, usually around 14-18°C, although higher temperatures have been recorded.
Spring and fall are warm, usually pleasant and generally the best time to visit the city. If you’re planning to go on a beach holiday, however, fall is generally a better option; the water is often warmer then, with water temperatures well above 20°C in both September and October.
🏨 Hotels Near Izmir
|Karaca Hotel||📍 İsmet Kaptan, No:, Şevket Özçelik Sk. No:55, 35210 Konak, Turkey||Konak||📞 +90 232 489 11 24||otelkaraca.com.tr/|
|Blanca Hotel||📍 Kahramanlar Merkez, 1397. Sk. No:2, 35230 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||📞 +90 232 441 84 14||blancahotel.com/|
|Armis Hotel||📍 Kahramanlar, Mürselpaşa Blv. No:157 D:Z1, 35230 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||📞 +90 232 402 35 35||armishotel.com/|
|Renaissance Izmir Hotel||📍 Akdeniz, Gazi Osman Paşa Blv. No:16, 35210 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||📞 +90 232 497 77 77||marriott.com/hotels/travel/adbbr-renaissance-izmir-hotel/|
|Swissotel Buyuk Efes Izmir||📍 Alsancak, Gazi Osman Paşa Blv. No:1, 35210 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||📞 +90 232 414 00 00||swissotel.com/hotels/izmir/|
|İzmir Palas Otel||📍 Kültür, Vasıf Çınar Blv No:2, 35220 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||📞 +90 232 465 00 30||izmirpalas.com.tr/|
|Beyond Hotel||📍 Kültür, Kızılay Cd. No:5, 35210 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||📞 +90 232 463 05 85||hotelbeyond.com/|
|Movenpick Hotel Izmir||📍 Kültür, Cumhuriyet Blv No:138, 35210 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||📞 +90 232 488 14 14||movenpick.com/en/europe/turkey/izmir/hotel-izmir.html|
|DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Izmir – Alsancak||📍 İsmet Kaptan, 1373. Sk. No:5, 35210 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||📞 +90 232 402 02 02||hilton.com/en/hotels/izmiadi-doubletree-izmir-alsancak/|
|Izmir Marriott Hotel||📍 Akdeniz, IZMIR MARRIOTT, Gazi Blv. NO:1, 35220 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||📞 +90 232 497 00 00||marriott.com/hotels/travel/adbmc-izmir-marriott-hotel/|
🎉 Tourist attractions Near Izmir
|İnciraltı Kent Ormanı||📍 Bahçelerarası, Engelliler Mrk. İçi Yolu, 35330 Balçova/İzmir, Turkey||Balçova||Park|
|İzmir Tarihi Asansör Binası||📍 Turgut Reis, Şht. Nihatbey Cd. 76/A, 35000 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||Historical landmark|
|Izmir Mask Museum||📍 Alsancak, 1448. Cumbalı Sk No:22, 35220 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||Museum|
|Hisar Mosque||📍 Konak, 904. Sk. No:52, 35250 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||Mosque|
|Alsancak Gündoğdu Meydanı||📍 Alsancak, Atatürk Cd., 35220 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||Tourist attraction|
|İzmir Atatürk Anıtı||📍 Akdeniz, Cumhuriyet Blv No:3, 35210 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||Monument|
|Kemeraltı Çarşısı||📍 Konak, Anafartalar Cd., 35250 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||Tourist attraction|
|Ataturk Museum||📍 Alsancak Mh.,, Gündüğdu Caddesi No:242, 35220 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||Museum|
|Varyant||📍 Fatih, Birleşmiş Milletler Cd., 35260 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||Tourist attraction|
|Smyrna Agora Ancient City||📍 Namazgah, Tarik Sari Sokağı No:29, 35240 Konak/İzmir, Turkey||Konak||Historical place|