Edremit In Early Spring

Edremit is an ideal place to experience early spring and stock up on natural oxygen. Here are sıx reasons to go there.

This canyon, near Altınoluk, harbors traces of the oldest settlements around the Gulf of Edremit. Some 27 kilometers long and 600 meters deep, it is like a mysterious, uncharted cave. Acting like a natural chimney, it blows pine-scented air from Kazdağı (Mt. Ida)  down to the bay while drawing the iodine-rich sea air up into the green mountain slopes.

Rumored to be the home of the legendary hero Conan, this ancient city lies west of the Gulf of Edremit. Archaeological ruins, wall frescoes and mosaics have been uncovered at Antandros, which is regarded by archaeologists as ‘a future Ephesus’. Founded in the 8th century B.C., the city boasts the region’s oldest necropolis.

According to legend, a lovely blond shepherd girl by the name of Sarıkız was cruelly murdered here on the strength of a nasty rumor, and the spot remains a place of spiritual pilgrimage even today. The Tahtacı Turkmens, who came from the Taurus Mountains to settle here in the 13th century, return every year on August 15th to the burial place on Kartalçimen Plain to commemorate Sarıkız. 

The village of Tahtakuşlar (literally, Wooden Birds) on the Edremit-Altınoluk highway hosts one of the most interesting museums in the region. Awarded by UNESCO, the village museum has exhibits of the costumes, household furniture, carpets and tents of the Tahtacı Turkmens, who live in the villages around Kazdağı.

Just one kilometer southeast of Tahtakuşlar, Çamlıbel is a village of outstanding beauty nestled among olive trees. If you like, you can eat meat grilled in the open air at tea gardens shaded by centuries-old plane trees overlooking the bay. The area also boasts boutique hotels that offer cooking classes.

Set up every Wednesday, Edremit Market supplies ingredients to some of Turkey’s leading gourmet restaurants. A smaller version of the market is set up near the landing on Tuesdays. With its myriad varieties of olives, as well as Aegean herbs, fresh vegetables and Turkmen women in authentic costume, Edremit Market is as colorful as it is described to be in Sabahattin Ali’s story, “Hasanboğuldu”.

Yöreye özgü doğal lezzetlerden biri olan kuşburnu iriliğindeki hünnap, hafif ekşimsi ve yoğun tadıyla lezzetli bir meyve. Edremit Körfezi’nde bolca yetişen bu ilginç meyveyi, daha çok şampuanlardaki jojoba özü olarak tanıyoruz. Meyveye ismini veren hünnap ağacı, tıpta kalp damar hastalıklarına karşı da kullanılıyor. Bir rivayete göre, Hz. İsa’nın çarmığa gerilirken başına takılan dikenli tac da hünnap ağacından yapılmış.

One of the area’s unique natural treats, the diminutive jujube is a slightly tart fruit with an intense flavor. Growing in abundance around the Gulf of Edremit, this fascinating fruit is best known to us as the jojoba essence used in shampoos. Parts of the jujube tree are also used in medicine to treat coronary heart disease. Legend has it that the crown of thorns placed on Jesus’s head when he was being nailed to the cross was made from the jujube.