Izmir is a city on Turkey’s Aegean coast. It is the third most populous city in Turkey, after Istanbul and Ankara, and the second largest urban agglomeration on the Aegean Sea after Athens, Greece. Smyrna has more than 3,000 years of recorded urban history, and up to 8,500 years of history as a human settlement since the Neolithic period. Lying on an advantageous location at the head of a gulf running down in a deep indentation, midway along the western Anatolian coast, it has been one of the principal mercantile cities of the Mediterranean Sea for much of its history. Known as Smyrna in antiquity, it was founded by the Greeks, taken over by the Romans and rebuilt by Alexander the Great before becoming part of the Ottoman Empire in the 15th century. Today, its expansive archaeological sites include the Roman Agora of Smyrna, now an open-air museum. The hilltop Kadifekale, or Velvet Castle, built during Alexander’s reign, overlooks the city.
For more information on the city:
Virtual tours of Izmir:
Other points of interest:
- Izmir Atatürk Museum
- Teos Ancient City, Seferihisar
- Sığacık, Seferihisar
- House of Virgin Mary