Kusadasi is a holiday resort on the southern Aegean Coast, overflowing with shiploads of tourists in summer who enlarge the year-round population several times over. Once a small fishing village, today the busy town is packed with curios and carpet shops; its proximity to the ruins of Ephesus making it an ideal base for Aegean cruise ships. Despite the frenzied influx of holidaymakers, Kusadasi is situated amid splendid coastal scenery and several significant archaeological sites, including the three well-preserved Ionian settlements of Miletus, Priene and Didyma. There are plenty of good hotels and restaurants, and ferries link it with the nearby Greek islands of Samos and Mykonos.
Dilek National Park
The national park near Kusadasi is a natural beauty where you can enjoy walking and picnics for seven months of the year from April to November, and go swimming throughout the summer months.
The park is open between 09.00 and 20.00 everyday. It is absolutely forbidden to light fires in the park just in case of fire, so either bring a picnic of cold food or eat in a restaurant in one of the bays. There is nowhere to stay and camping is also prohibited. Apart from the gendarme station and four restaurants there are no concrete buildings, but there are public lavatories, showers, drinking water fountains, and wooden picnic tables and chairs in the woods.
You can drive by car to Davutlar National Park, or take the minibuses which leave every fifteen minutes during the summer from Kusadasi , 34 km away respectively. The north shores are best for swimming, and here there are four main beaches. Içmeler, the park’s largest bay and the nearest to the entrance, has the only sand beach, and since the sea is shallow here, is favoured by families with children and non-swimmers.
Camel Wrestling in Kusadasi
The Selcuk Camel Wrestling Festival is held annually either in December or in January, usually the Sunday around the 15th. The festival coincides with the Camels’ breeding season (the reason they compete: for females) and thus is not seen at any other time of the year.
In 2000 it was relocated to a special field near Pamucak Beach which is about 9 km distance to Kudadasi city center. There are abundant buses from Selcuk Bus station in every ½ hour and it is about 15 minutes drive and then a 10 minute walk. The admission is usually around 3€ .
The action starts around late morning but the crowds arrive earlier for choice of a better view. For any kind of good seat the earlier you go the more choice of seat location. It will probably also be muddy and cold (it is mid-winter after all). It may even rain. Attendees are urged to prepare for all of these with very warm clothing and umbrellas.
Tuesday Market is where you can find fresh and tasty season vegetables and fruits. Villagers from and around Kusadasi bring their fresh crops of fruits and vegetables to sell at the market. There is public transport available.
You can catch up the ”Ladies Beach” minibuses every 5 minutes.
Wednesday market , close to the main minibus station at the city center, is set in a large area. This is more a clothing market, where you can buy inexpensive and quality local productions. You can even find cheap “genuine fake” productions of expensive brands. It is also possible to find shoe and cosmetics as well as home equipment.
Aquafantasy water park is not only a dream world for your children, but also an endless excitement or a perfect relaxation for you, with is several themed slides and pools.