Izmir is the third largest city in entire Turkey and an important port as well. The ancient city of Smyrna has got developed into a modern city with bright outlook. There are numerous facilities of tourist interest in the city and a number of places in its vicinity as well. Situated along a huge bay, it has a unique climate that is quite different from rest parts of the nation.
Izmir was founded by Trojans in around 3000 BC as Smyrna. It even hosted Alexander the Great in 334 BC. It has changed hands between numerous kingdoms during the past and was destroyed and rebuilt a number of times. It was a cosmopolitan city in the past as people from various cultures including the Greek, Jews and Muslims used to dwell here amicably. It was merged with rest of Turkey after its independence from Greece.
There are a large number of places in and around the city that are worth visiting. These places include Konak Square, Asanor, Alsancak, Kadifekale, cable car, ancient ruins and serene beaches.
Konak Square is essentially the heart of this city. There are a couple of places of tourist interest here including Konak Yali Mosque, Kemeralti Bazaar and the historic clock tower which is symbol of the city. This square plays host to a number of interesting events throughout the year.
Asanor or the elevator is another must visit attraction of Izmir. This electricity driven elevator is over a century old and quite popular among tourists. The top of elevator offers a great view of this city. Visitors can even enjoy local cuisine at a restaurant located on its top. There are a number of popular streets such as Alsancak, where one can enjoy water-pipes with delicious flavors.
Kemeralti is a big marketplace which ought to be visited by every tourist. It is dotted with numerous shops where one can purchase presents, clothes, memorabilia and other stuff. It can be pretty crowded at times, especially during tourist season. Tourists can pay a visit to Kadifekale Castle and Kordon pomegranate waterfront as well.
The beaches at Cesme, Foca, Urla, Seferihisar and Dikili etc along Aegean Sea coast are quite popular among tourists. These can be easily reached with help of public transport. Do not forget to visit at least a couple of them for an exhilarating experience.
There are quite a lot of local delicacies that are worth trying. Melons, kebabs, sea food, fish, local cheese and sandwiches etc ought to be tasted at least once. One may even enjoy beer at any one of numerous pubs in the city while enjoying local music.
The summer season can be unpleasant here and visiting Izmir during this time ought to be avoided. Unusually, it receives snow once in a decade or so due to its unique location. Rest of the year is quite pleasant and fit for paying a visit here. It is well connected with most parts of the country and few European cities with regular service of trains and ferries. The international airport is catered by most major airlines.