Kusadasi, which means “bird island”, is set in a superb gulf in the Aegean region of Turkey and is known for its turquoise sparkling water of the Sea, broad sandy beaches, bright sun and large marina with a capacity for 600 boats. A glorious ancient city stands beside it, Ephesus with hundreds of thousands of visitors from tours each year. The town is not far from Adnan Menderes Airport, Izmir (only 80 kilometers or 50 miles). Numerous holiday villages and hotels line its shores and hundreds of restaurants serves food from all around the world and, of course, Turkish Cuisine, which is one of the largest cuisines of the world. There are also many hostels, discos, bars, cafes, pubs and “Turkish Nights”; all those to cater holiday-makers.
Kusadasi has retained a certain earthiness to it and inexpensive meals and pensions can still be found in town. Many shops do a brisk trade with passengers from hundreds of cruise ships that dock for a day or two, allowing enough time for a trip to Ephesus and a shopping expedition.
The tiny Güvercin Adasi (Pigeon Island) is connected to the mainland with a causeway. Its romantic setting includes a well-maintained flower garden which surrounds the restored 14th or 15th century fortress housing a restaurant and disco frequented by lovers or those hoping to find one by the night’s end.
Beaches close to town tend to get quite crowded during summer. If you prefer more serenity, head for Dilek Peninsula National Park, known locally as Milli Park about 28 km (17 miles) from Kusadasi.
It is also possible to get to Greek island Samos by regular daily ferries.
Lately, many foreigners have bought (and continue to buy) property in and around Kusadasi for their holidays or for the retirement. It became a popular area especially for the British and Irish nationals.