The inner city of Izmir is one I would suggest if you are looking for a place to stop over for a night, or you are intending to head to Ephesus (which is a large historical site of ancient ruins. As Rik said – “Why would we want to see the ruined stuff, where is all the new stuff?”) It is a pleasant city, and while it is situated around a large bay of water, a bus or an hour’s drive will get you to the nearest beach.
The highlight of Izmir was Channing Tatum gyrating to “Pony” in Magic Mike II with Rik (although no match for Jase’s moves on the Fridays D-floor!!!). The movies cost us the low price of $8 AUD and we scored an ice-cream for $2 – eat your heart out Brisbane Cineplex Cinemas! While I would suggest visiting any one of a number of other Turkish towns before Izmir (for those who like a little more thrill seeking) if you do catch a movie in Izmir, then beware of the intermission. Perhaps this is a European thing, but the movie just stops and there is no warning so we sat there laughing but also wondering if we were on a real life set of a horror movie and the theatre’s electricity supply had consequently been shut off. Ok so we were probably being melodramatic upon reflection but it seemed logical at the time as we were practically the only people there! The power (and the movie) came back on and we resumed enjoyment of our snacks and Channing working his magic.
Second to our trip to the cinemas, was our day trip to Cesme Beach. As I write this on one of Croatia’s wi-fi-less busses, absent of any sign of a man carrying free drinks and snacks up the bus – it is worthy to note that bus trips in Turkey are very pleasant. Sometimes we even looked forward to them for their bountiful supply of icy cold water, and endless free access to the internet!
Jase and Mark went to Izmir’s Bazaar market, reporting back that it was largely Turkish clothes, and street food. Mark also went to the Asansor elevator which he said gave a nice overview of the city. In the evening Rik and I met up with Jase and Mark where we had drinks in a bar on the water.
The end of our 2 days in Izmir came around pretty quickly. Much to the peaked interest of the hotel staff who allowed us entry to their kitchen, two of them watched on as Rik and I sliced and diced our fruit for the day, giving any Japanese Iron Chef a run for their money. In two minutes flat we had perfectly cubed a whole pineapple, half a massive watermelon, and several oranges! As a trade off for their hospitality, we shared some of our fruit with them which they added to their half already eaten plate of breakfast!
Reflecting on it, our stay in Izmir may have been a different experience if we were staying at the Hilton where our baller travelling companions Mark and Luke stayed. We hear that it’s great for picking up some good parsley!
Stay tuned for more, D x