Dalyan

Dalyan is a small fishing village with a harbour. It is the site of the Antik Liman or Antique harbour which would have been the main port of Alexandria Troas just up the road.

The harbour is home to a number of fishing boats and pleasure craft. There are some tea rooms and restaurants and a good beach here. Across the water you can see the island of Bozcaada in the distance.

This pretty little village is also popular with tourists during the summer months and there are many holiday homes in the village.

Gülpınar

The town of Gülpınar is 22 km or about a half hours drive from Tavakli which is about the same distance as it is to Ezine from Tavakli village. It would be very easy to just drive through the centre of Gülpınar and miss out on what is actually here.

As you come towards the town there is a right hand turn by the petrol station which if you were to follow would take you to a busy fishing marina and small beach.

Just a little further up the main road as you are coming into the town you will see the signpost for Apollo Smintheon the ancient temple and archealogical site which is the main reason why people come to Gülpınar in the first place.

Assos ( Behramkale )

Assos or Behramkale is locatedin the Ayvacik district of Canakkale province. It is both an historical site steeped in ancient history and a tourist attraction by the sea. It is situated on the southern side of the Biga Peninsula, known as Troad,

The official name of the town is Behramkale but it is generally referred to locally as Assos. There are really two parts to Assos. The archaeological site on the hill and the beautiful fishing village with its own harbour on the coast.

The ancient harbour is a beautiful little enclave with fishing boats and small restaurants and gift shops. There are a couple of very good hotels here and a beach for those that wish to go swimming.

From the top of the hill at the ancient Temple of Athena you get a panoramic view of thisimpressive coastline and an idea as to how magnificent this site must have been in its hey day. The island of Lesbos lies out to sea to the south and the harbour of Assos can be seen with its sparkling turqoise waters below.

Visitors to the ancient site will see a large statue dedicated to Plato, student of Aristotle who spent more than three years of his life here in Assos. The temple of Athena and the Acropolis of Assos are 238 metres above sea level.

As you walk up the steep path to the historical site you will find many village stalls selling trinkets, clothing and general souvenir items. In addition to the main site there is an impressive mosque built by Ottoman Sultan Murat in the 14th century that is also worth a visit.

The ancient ruins are still in the process of being restored. They date back to the 7th century B.C. and the original foundations were laid by Aeolian citizens from Lesbos.

This important historical site is a must for any visitor to this region and the charming and idyllic town below is a great place to relax and unwind.

Just two kilometres down the road from Assos there is place called KadirgaCove, surrounded by old olive trees and a beautiful beach and sparkling clean sea. The beach is nice and wide and has been awarded Blue Flag status.

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Kestanbol Springs

The Kestanbol Springs are located 8 km from the coast to the south of Ezine. The waters of the springs here are supposed to be beneficial for a number of diseases and ailments including rheumatism, sciatica and bone tuberculoses.

Kestanbol ( the old name for Istanbul ) is reputed to have been used for the baths of the city of Troy nearby. It was Alexander the Great that renamed it Troas. The lodge accommodation here provides thermal spring facilities in the guest rooms.

Bayramiç

 

Bayramiç is a pleasant town located on Mount Ida ( Kazdag ). It is blessed with an abundance of green countryside and is situated 351 ft above sea level. The population of the town is 13,420.

People have been living in this town for centuries.  Evidence exists of structures dating back to the Byantine and Ottoman eras. Of particular historical significance is the stone bridge ( Taskopru ) which dates back to 1210 and the Taskopru ( Tasköprü ) Mosque and Tepe Mosque. The most impressive building however is the Hadimoglu Konagi from Ottoman times.

Ayazma  Kazdagi

Follow the signs from Bayramic to Ayazma, a nature reserve of breathtaking beauty and a dam that supplies water to the surrounding areas.  You enter a different world here and the road takes you through pine forests, apple orchards and up into the mountains with scenery that will astound you.

The reservoir near Bayramic and its surrounding lush countryside.

http://www.bayramic.gov.tr/

 

Babakale

Babakale is perhaps best known for its restored castle. It dates back to 1723 and was one of the last Ottoman castles of its era.  Babakale lies at the most western point on the Turkish mainland.

The harbour is impressive and provides shelter for many fishing boats.  Tourism is important here too and there are plenty of places to stay. The location of Babakale provides an excellent base from which to explore the rest of this beautiful coastline.

There is a good sandy beach at Babakale which provides safe bathing and is shallow for swimmers. Babakale used to be a pirates paradise and during the time of Sultan Ahmed III the castle was built to provide protection for the local people.

Whilst tourism provides a good income for many of the locals there is an economy in the growing of olives, knife making and shoe manufacturing.

Whether you are passing through or stopping over, Babakale is definately worth a visit and if you are feeling peckish you might try some freshly caught fish in one of the restaurants.

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Troy ( Truva, Troia )

Troy ( Truva, Troia ) is a world heritage site famous for its Trojan horse and mentioned in the epic Iliad and the Odyssey by Homer. It is located 30 km from the city of Canakkale and some 5km inland from the Dardenelles.

Troy is well documented in history even though its very existence was doubted for years. It was supposed that Troy might have been a mythical city or that it had existed in far off lands including the unlikely Scandinavia. It is recorded that Alexander the Great visited Troy in 334 BC.

The city of Troy was originally right up against the sea but over the years the build up of silt and shifting tides have placed it inland. The city of Ilium was also founded on this site during the reign of the Roman Emperor Augustos but its importance faded with the growing success and expansion of Constantinople.

There is no easy way of explaining it but the early excavations of this site have been disasterous. An English archaeologist by the name of Frank Calvert carried out the first excavations and when he teamed up with a German archaeologist called Heinrich Schliemann investigation of the area confirmed that several cities, on  nine different levels, had been built over each other at the same location.

Schliemann could only use information that he had at the time but unfortunately he dug through several layers of cities and deeper than the original city of Troy thus creating confusion and displacement of valuable ancient material. Schliemann is reputed to have found numerous treasures at the site which became known as Priam’s Treasure. He sold them to the Berlin Museums but there are doubts about the authenticity of the objects.

Recent excavations show evidence of a deep ditch covering a much larger area that may have marked the boundaries of the city of Troy and attributed to around  1250 BC. There now seems little doubt that this was indeed the site of the famous city of Troy.

The story of Troy is famous and steeped in legend. Odysseus found that breaking the seige of Troy was becoming impossible and ordered that a huge hollow wooden horse be made that could accommodate soldiers hiding within it. The horse was placed outside the city walls and the Greek fleet sailed away as if in an admission of defeat.

The horse was dragged into Troy as a trophy and late at night the Greek soldiers climbed down from the horse, opened the gates to the city of Troy and the Trojans  were slaughtered. Priam was killed and Cassandra was raped. This magnificent city had been overcome with cunning and deceit.  The expression “beware of Greeks bearing gifts” comes from the Trojan horse.

Anyone visiting Troy will find the nearby village at Hisarlik totally reliant on the sale of Troy related souvenirs and refreshments.  In the 1980’s the site was pretty forlorn and devoid of much information but in recent times the excavations have revealed a much more comprehensive picture of what Troy may have been like.

Car parking and facilities at the site have been improved and there is a dedicated gift shop.

Visitors to Troy should not visit expecting to experience the breathtaking grandeur of places like Ephesus, Pergamon and Aspendos which have been carefully re constructed in less complicated environments than what have been found at Troy. These sites were not subject to the same level of damage and looting and were therefore much easier to piece together.

Although the ruins of Troy were only discovered in 1873, it quickly became one of the most famous archaeological sites in the world. It is a World Heritage site and if you find yourself anywhere close to this region of Turkey a visit is highly recommended.