City Tours in İzmir, Turkey

Here are some sample İzmir city tours, excursions and airport transfers from TTP’s recommended tour companies and travel agencies.

(The actual programs of each tour company will vary, but these samples give you an idea of what you may see.)

Airport-to-Hotel Transfer

(30 minutes) An English-speaking guide/driver meets you in the Arrivals hall of İzmir‘s Adnan Menderes Airport, assists with your luggage, escorts you by private car over the hills to your hotel, and helps with your luggage again. You pay the driver with a pre-paid voucher. No worries about struggling with a foreign language, about taxi drivers who take you the long way round to run up the meter, or about having the right amount of Turkish liras to cover the fare and tip. Details & reservations…

Half-Day İzmir Tour

(3 hours) Start with a drive to the top of Mount Paguswhich rises above the city center. Enjoy the panoramic views of the city and Bay of Izmir from the walls of Kadifekale, an ancient fortress built by Alexander the Great. Tour Izmir’s museums of Archeology and Ethnography, then visit the city’s symbol, its OttomanClock Tower. Finally, penetrate its elaborate bazaar (one of my favorites in all of Turkey) which stretches for blocks. You can see the best of İzmir in only 3 hours! Details & reservations…

İzmir, Jewish Sites & Sardis

(7-1/2 hours) This full-day private tour shows you all the best sites in İzmir, and also Sardis, the capital of the ancient kingdom of Lydia, with its grand Roman Synagogue. At Sardis you can also visit the Temple of Artemis (Cybele, Diana), and other ancient monuments. Details & reservations…

Ephesus & Virgin Mary’s House

(9 hours) To see all of Ephesus, take this full-day tour: Fountain of Trajan, Temples of Hadrian and Domitian, the mosaic-filled Private House, the Library of CelsusBaths of VediusScholastic BathsBouleuterion (council chamber) and the enormous 24,000-seat Great Theatre. After lunch (included), visit the Virgin Mary’s House set in a neraby hilltop park, and the Ephesus Museum in Selçuk, where many of the choicest relics of Ephesus are displayed. Details & reservations…

Pergamum & Asklepion

(8 hours) See Pergamum on this full-day tour which includes its acropolis, its steep, dramatic theater, monumental Altar of Zeus and the Asclepion, the ancient medical center where Galen laid the foundations of European medicine. Details & reservations…

Full Day Pamukkale & Hierapolis

(9 hours) Drive south and east through fertile fruit- and tobacco-growing country up the Meander River valley to Pamukkale (Hierapolis), where you’ll enjoy a swim in its naturally warm mineral waters. Explore the extensive ruins of the Roman health spa of Hierapolis, which show that 2000 years ago people were enjoying just what you’re enjoying! Details & reservations…

—Tom Brosnahan


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