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kusadasi vs. Izmir


My husband and I are taking a trip to Turkey in the fall. We are spending a few days in Istanbul and then flying to Izmir. I am wondering if it would be better to stay in Izmir or Kusadasi. We will go to Ephesus and after a few days go on to some Greek islands. Which town is more picturesque? Which has more interesting things to do etc.


Posted by
16890 posts

On my first trip, I stayed in Selcuk, which is closer to Ephesus, and enjoyed the fact that it was a small town and easily walkable. However, the museum there is closed for renovation. Our tours stay in Kusadasi, also closer than Izmir, and this is a quite modern seaside destination with lots of hotels and restaurants, but not many special historical sights. From Kusadasi, you can take the daily ferry to Samos island. Izmir is also a modern city, with more museums than Kusadasi, but no international ferry.

Posted by
11294 posts

I haven't been to Izmir or Kusadasi, but Selcuk, where I did stay, is closer to Ephesus than either of these two. I had read that it was just a sleeping place for those seeing Ephesus, but we really liked the town of Selcuk itself, as it had a very nice vibe. We stayed at the Hotel Canberra, and would do so again: The rooftop dining area was great for breakfast (included) and dinner (extra cost and worth it), and the staff was extremely helpful (free trip back to train station, arranging a taxi to and from Ephesus, loaner Ephesus guides, etc).

Posted by
14 posts

Hey there!

Izmir is the 3rd largest city in Turkey with 3.9 million population and it is full of things to do, ancient places to see but Kusadasi is just a small coast town where is much better for a summer vacation. You can't compare such a big city to a small town, so you should definitely stay in Izmir. Plus, I'd like to give you a suggestion... If you stay in Izmir, rent a car and make a day trip to Foça and Alaçatı. You will be amazed of blue&white and colourful historical houses with the Aeagen view.

Enjoy your trip.

Source: I'm Turkish and going there every year.