Tire is a bustling market town and worth visiting on a Tuesday when they have their weekly market. Good for seeing all the local colour and a wide range of merchandise from wooden spoons to hand made saddles and donkey harnesses made of goats hair. Wander around the market streets at your leisure and look out for the old caravansarays in ruins behind many old doors. There is a very interesting workshop making felt carpets in many original patterns called CEMIL CON .
On the roads leading into Tire gypsies sell beautiful reed baskets in all shapes and sizes. There is an amusing rural life museum which provides ten minutes entertainment although most of the displays have not been changed for years or even dusted for that matter!
Nothing beats a trip to the National Park the other side of Kusadasi, although the drive takes around 45 minutes and is not very exciting it is always worth it when you get there. Offering 4 unspolilt beaches in summer , the first sandy and the others pebble, many have excellent restaurants right at the waters edge. The sea is clean and tourquoise blue and usually calm in the morning although a cooling breeze seems to set in in the afternoon creating surf and waves.
Ideal for swimming you will not be able to resist. Sun loungers and umbrellas are on offer but only one row , behind you the pine clad mountains and infront the turquoise sea. In the evening you may share your beach front with families of wild boar which come down to see what the tourists have left for them. There is a small charge for driving into the Natiönal Park. in the winter the beaches are still beautiful and there is a nice hike up a canyon for walkers.
A lively holiday resort and if you missed clubbing or mainstream tourism this is the place to go. The harbour has many restaurants and cafes and all major banks and shops can be found here.
We recommend an early start when the weather is hot especially as people come from far and wide to see this place and it is nicer to enjoy it without the crowds. You can find English guides at the door which know a lot about the ruins but you need more time to go around with them. You walk from one end of the ruined city to the other and that alone is about one and a half kilometres. We would recommend that you set aside another day to do this as it is also very extensive and fascinating. Do not forget to buy the seperate ticket of The Terrace Houses of Ephesus.
Close by and overshadowed by its famous ,ancient neighbour Ephesus, this small town has a lot to offer. Apart from the museum itself which houses many of the best finds from Ephesus, there is a beautiful 12th century mosque and St Johns Basilica. Ruins of hamams and libraries from different centuries can be found all over the town and storks nest on the top of many ancient columns. This is a good place to shop for carpets and kilims and many places offer as good a selection as Istanbul, dont forget to bargin. Dont miss a look at the station full of old world charm and The house of the Virgin Mary just out of the town. The market in the central square on Saturday is good for people watching and excellent local produce.
Just past Ephesus and only 20 minutes from Sirince lies the huge sandy beach of Pamucak. We suggest that you turn left just before the public beach and go into Dereli where the beach is fringed by palms and there is a beach restaurant offering cold drinks and food as well as showers and toilets. A sunset walk along this beach is lovely at any time of year and the beach is very good for children in that it is shallow and sandy for quite a long way out.
if you want to entertain the children or get your thrills out of hurtling downhill on different gradients of plastic then you have 2 places to choose from Adaland and Aquafantasy, one of which claims to be the biggest in Europe. Teenagers of a certain age can be dropped in the morning and picked up in the afternoon and adults may prefer to see some of the other many and varied sites in the local area.
Both of these are on the far left of Pamucak beach on the way to Kusadasi and are clearly marked.
If you like trains go to the world famous Camlik steam train museum, the restaurant here is also very good. There is also a ceramic shop branch of hand made tiles and objects for sale here.
Historical sights of the region
From Sirince and Ephesus, you can tour the four fascinating archeological sites of Magnesia, Priene, Miletus and Didyma in a long morning or afternoon.
Magnesia on the Meander
Magnesia is located within the boundaries of Tekinköy, a sub- district of the Aydin province. It is situated on the road between ortaklar and Söke.
Magnesia was at an important location commercially and strategically in the triangle of Priene, Ephesus and Tralles
It lays within Ionia, but because it had been settled by Aeolians from Magnesia of Greece, was not accepted into the Ionian League. During its existence, Magnesia was subject first to the Lydians, then to the Persians.
Priene and Miletus
Drive south 35 km (22 miles) from Selcuk or southeast 20 km (12.5 miles) from Kusadasi to Söke, then follow signs for Güllübahçe (10 km, 6 miles) and Priene, one km farther along. If you need services (drinks, restaurant, shops, simple lodgings), you can find them in Güllübahçe.
After your visit to Priene , drive 22 km (14 miles) to Miletus (Milet, Balat), west along the northern edge of the Meander River (Menderes Nehri) flood plain, then south to cross the broad, level flood plain, planted mostly in cotton. At this point, near where it empties into the Aegean Sea, the once-mighty river is a mere trickle of its former mighty self, constrained in a few narrow channels, its precious liquid already spread over the vast expanse of fertile land along the Meander's course.
The huge theatre rises to greet you as you reach the southern edge of the flood plain. Turn left to reach the theater and, in front of it, a copse of trees with a parking lot, restaurant, drinks and snack shop, and toilets. The Miletus Museum is about one km south along the side road to Akköy.
From Miletus, go 4.5 km (3 miles) south to Akköy, on either the old road (passing the Miletus Museum) or the newer highway to the west.
South of Akköy, follow signs for Yenihisar (Didim/Didyma), driving 14 km (9 miles) to its gigantic oracular Temple of Apollo. There are restaurants, drinks and snack stands, and lodgings right around the temple.
Altinkum Beach, 4 km (2.5 miles) south of Didyma, is very busy in summer, with a significant population of British and European seasonal residents.
If you're heading onward to Bodrum , you can drive eastward from Yenihisar or Akköy to join the highway to Milas, south of which you turn right and climb into the mountains on your way to Bodrum.
Another sight on the way to Bodrum is Heraclia.. Used to be one of the greatest horbours of the region. Now it is near by the lake Bafa..