Çandarlı, Turkey

Last Updated on May 3, 2019

The little Aegean port town of Çandarlı, known asPitane in ancient times (map), was fortified by the Genoese in the 1300s, who hoped to keep its facilities and trade in their hands exclusively.

After the Ottoman conquest of Anatolia in the 1400s, Sultan Mehmet II (The Conqueror) restored the fortress in the 1450s, or at least so says the well-worn marble inscription near the main gate into the fortress.

Sultan Mahmut II restored it again in 1814, and the Turkish government did the final restoration in 1955, returning it to the shape it had had during the time of the Conquest in the 1400s.

Today Çandarli is a pleasant place, good for a morning or afternoon visit (there are few hotels). Its economy is still mostly traditional: fishermen fill the waterfront tea houses when they’re not out on the water, and farmersstill drive loads of produce through town during harvest season.

The small traditional bazaar area between the waterfront and the fortress is fairly well preserved and relatively unsullied by the crass commercialism that always follows mass tourism.

For transport, minibuses will take you north to Dikili and northeast to Bergama, from where you can get a proper bus to farther destinations.



Aegean Turkey

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