Balikesir (Turkish: Balıkesir) is one of the geographically rich provinces in the Marmara region with the coasts of the Aegean Sea and the Sea of Marmara. It has an important position as a transit route and connects Bursa to the east, Manisa to the south, Canakkale to the west and the Sea of Marmara to the north. Balikesir Koca Seyit Airport in Edremit is used as Balikesir Airport.
Balikesir is one of the most important cities in the Marmara region and one of the largest in terms of area. Balikesir has metropolitan status and consists of 20 districts including the central district. In particular, the coastal areas of Ayvalik, Burhaniye, Edremit and Erdek are the main sea tourism areas in Balikesir. Other important counties include Bandirma, Susurluk and Gonen counties, which are in the Turkey play an important role.
Balikesir Travel Guide
Balikesir is a city known for its location at the meeting point of the Aegean and Marmara regions and its natural areas, and a settlement known for its rich History is known. Over the centuries the city has hosted many different civilizations and is known as the ancient Mysia region.
Arrive & Depart Balikesir
Airlines are one of the most popular modes of transportation to Balikesir. Balikesir Koca Seyit Airport is 87 km from Balikesir city center. From the airport you can easily reach the city center by shuttle, taxi or private transfer.
Almost all major German and Turkish airlines fly to Balikesir with a change in and Istanbul or Izmir on. Direct flights to Izmir cost from 70 to 300 euros, depending on the season. Detailed Airport information for Edremit Airport are available on our partner site Airportdetails.de
Local transport in Balikesir city center is mainly provided by city buses. There are 85 different bus lines in Merkez Karesi and Altıyylül districts, providing short connections to all districts, avenues and streets of Balıkesir. There are 455 lines in the province. Magnetic chip cards called "Balkart" are used for transport and can be bought from retailers and loaded with the desired amount. Balkart can be used for city buses and private public buses.
There are regular bus and minibus connections between Balıkesir and 18 other districts. Ayvalık, Burhaniye, Edremit, Banderma and Erdek regions are easily accessible by city bus, which are the most famous in tourism. Balkart is used for these shipments.
Rent a car in Balikesir
It is very convenient to rent a car from Balikesir Koca Seyit Airport to the surrounding seaside resorts.
The prestigious major Internationals and Nationals Car rental companies have offices directly at the airport and their stands are located at the exit of the terminal.
Just in Summer you should book a car as early as possible, as demand is always very high.
Hotel in Balikesir
Balikesir is held every year in popular seaside resorts such as Akcay, Edremit, Ayvalık, Cunda Island, Altınoluk, Erdek and Marmara Island. Many domestic and foreign tourists are received. With access to the beaches of Marmara and the Aegean coast, the deep blue sea and the majestic nature of the Kaz Mountains, Balikesir offers you the opportunity for a peaceful vacation where you can relax. Also open to spa tourism in the area, you can plan a holiday where you can feel like in summer as in Winter can relax.
Balikesir offers a variety of holiday options, from high volume resorts catering to all market segments to accommodation options such as boutiques, apartments and guesthouses. Balıkesir offers safe, peaceful vacations in the resort's tourism-certified facilities, which are often preferred by urban hotel families.
In Balikesir you will find many fully equipped apartments that can be booked through AirBnB.
Attractions in Balikesir
Balikesir is a beautiful city with dozens of historical and cultural attractions points of interest & sights, which are located on the coast of the Marmara Sea and the Aegean Sea, with beaches, bays, hiking areas, waterfalls, mountains, national parks and gorges.
Very rich in history and natural beauty, Balikesir has dozens of places to visit. Especially Ayvalık and Edremit, Burhaniye, Bandırma, Gonen, Susurluk and Erdek districts are the most popular districts in Balikesir. Also, Balikesir is a very rich city when it comes to sightseeing. Some of these areas are: Cunda Island, Kaz Mountains, Antandros, Avşa Islands and Şeytan Sofrası.
- Alibey Island (Cunda): Cunda island is at least as famous as Ayvalık for many different reasons. Due to its historical, natural and human nature, Alibey is one of the attractions, which almost everyone who comes to the area will visit.
- Avsa island: About 2 hours by sea from Erdek and connected to the Marmara district, Avşa island is a summer vacation spot with clear waters, tranquil bays, accommodation options for almost every budget and private beaches.
- Altinoluk: Located near the border with Canakkale Province, Altınoluk has Edremit-affiliated district status, about 25 km from the district center. Altınoluk, along with Akçay, is one of the most famous tourist centers in Edremit District. Due to its location at the foot of Mount Kaz, Altınoluk benefits from the abundance and blessings of the mountain and is due to its proximity to famous natural attractions such as Şahinderesi Gorge, Darıdere Natural Park and Cunda Island. The ancient city of Antandros is the most famous historical city that draws history buffs to Artenoluc. Those interested in ancient settlements and Historic Buildings If you are interested, you should definitely add the ancient city of Antandros to your list of places to visit in Balikesir.
- Akkay: Akçay is right in the Bay Area, a tourist area about 8-10 kilometers from the center of Edremit District. The population of the Akçay district of Edremit increases 20-25 times during the summer months due to the overcrowded tourist population. Tourist attractions such as Sütüven Waterfall, Kızılkeçili, Güre, Çamlıbel, Zeytinli District and Hasanboğuldu Pond are among the famous elements of the area.
- Bell Tower of Balikesir: The bell tower is one of the landmarks in Balikesir city center, built by the governor of Silistra Crete-i Zade Mehmet Pasha. This information is preserved by inscriptions on the tower. Built in 1829, this building is one of the first historical structures that catches your eye when you arrive in the city. The five-storey bell tower is exactly 20 meters high.
- Devil's Table (Şeytan Sofrası): The Şeytan Sofrası is a completely natural formation formed after a volcanic eruption in Küçükköy District of Ayvalik District. In Sarimsakli, the Şeytan Sofrası is located high up on the peninsula. It takes its name from a flat rock above it. The ancient footprint-shaped altar is believed by locals to be the devil's footprints.
- Küçükköy (Yenicarohori): Küçükköy comes from the Time by Fatih Sultan Mehmet and is a very important and historical settlement in this regard. Küçükköy, formerly Yeniçarohori, meaning Praetorian Guard Square, is known as the place where Sultan Mehmet prepared the taking of Midilli.
- Kaz Mountains (Kaz Dağı): Kaz Mountains was declared a national park and protected by law in 1994 and is a natural tourist area covering an area of approximately 21.000 hectares, mainly within the Edremit District boundaries. With 40 different endemic plant species, the Kaz Mountains are probably the richest national park in our country in terms of animal and plant diversity.
- Gonen Merkez thermal springs: The central hot springs and spa facilities are located on campus around Governor Hüseyin Öğütçen City Park.
- Sutuven Waterfall (Sutuven Şelalesi): Sütüven Waterfall, whose name means water falling from a height, is one of the natural beauties of Kaz Mountain National Park. The falls are located within the boundaries of the Bayoba district of Edremit, 14 km from the district and 7 km from Akçay. To get to the waterfall you need to take Zeytinli Street near Akçay and then reach Beyoba after passing through the neighborhood of the same name.
- Ancient City of Kyzikos (Kyzikos Antik Kenti): On the peninsula is the ancient city of Kyzikos, which was called Bear Mountain or Bear Island in ancient times and is now called Kapıdağ, which is an important ancient area on the Bandırma-Erdek road. This ancient city is 10 kilometers away from Bandirma and only 9 kilometers away from Erdek, which is visited by tourists from both counties and is extensive due to its historical sites.
- Sahinderesi Gorge (Şahinderesi Kanyonu): The Gorge is a must-see natural wonder located in Altınoluk district of Edremit. Boardwalks and picnic areas alongside the clear, icy waters are the top choices for many travelers visiting the area in the spring and summer.
- Taksiyarhis Memorial Museum (Taksiyarhis Anıt Müzesi): This historical building is from 1844. The Memorial Museum in the center of Ayvalık is the oldest church in the area.
- Historical streets and houses of Ayvalık: Ayvalık houses attract tourists with their narrow streets and unique architecture. They are made of lead, iron, wood and bricks from ancient Küçükköy.
- Kuşcenneti National Park (Kuşcenneti Milli Parkı): Kuşcenneti National Park is located on the Bandırma – Susurluk road, just 18 km from Bandırma city center. The bird sanctuary was granted national park status in 1959 and has remained largely intact since it was declared a Class 1 natural area in 1981.
- Ancient city of Adramytteion (Adramytteion Antik Kenti): Ören, which today officially has the status of a district, is also the area where the ancient city of Adramytteion is located and has an important place in history. This place is known as the ancient city named after Edremit.
- Ayvalık Rahmi M. Koc Museum (Cunda Taksiyarhi's Church): Built in 1873 as Taksiyarhis Church, it is one of the most important historical monuments on Alibe Island and is now known under the name of Ayvalık Rahmi M. Koc Museum open to tourists.
- Olive Island (Zeytinli Ada): Zeytinli is an island, opposite the tea plantation in the heart of the Erdek district and the ferry terminal on the coast when you reach the end of the terminal. The island is of great historical importance and, despite its size, is notable in this regard. It takes its name from the two olive trees inside. The Kera Panagia or Church of the Virgin Mary was built in the 6th century AD and is the most famous building on the island.
- Hasanboğuldu Pond (Hasanboğuldu Göleti): Hasanboğuldu Pond is one of the main attractions of Kaz Mountain National Park and a natural formation worth seeing. The pond is the focus of visitors to Mount Kaz and is very famous for telling many stories about it.
- Kuvayi Milliye Museum: One of the other landmarks of the city, the Kuvayi Milliye Museum, located near the Zagnos Pasha Mosque, is a must-see in the city center and displays artifacts from WWI. It is both a historical and cultural art museum as many of the works it contains have the character of depicting the struggle of the army and the people.
Things to do in Balikesir
Balıkesir has beautiful bays, each with pristine natural beauty. Excursions into nature are among the Activities in Balikesir. If you are a nature lover, you will find the tranquility you are looking for in these heavenly coves.
- Olive Rock Festival: Zeytinli Rock Festival, held annually in Akçay area of Edremit, is Turkey's most famous rock festival and one of the best things to experience in summer.
- Ayvalik boat tour: Combining many beautiful elements such as crystal clear sea and sunrise and sunset views between the islands, boat tours are one of the favorite activities for local and foreign tourists.
- Edremit boat tours: Edremit is one of the most popular resort areas after Ayvalık and offers many opportunities for boat trips. Many local companies organize boat trips to the sea-like area.
- Scuba diving: Another activity that we recommend you to do during your holiday in Balikesir is scuba diving, where you can see the underwater riches of Ayvalık. In that regard, the county is definitely the best part of the region. Ayvalık includes about 60 different dive sites and is a must for divers with red coral reefs, red starfish and many rare fish.
- Ayvalik bike tours: Ayvalık is one of the most unique cycling destinations. We strongly recommend renting bikes at the beginning of the season (Mai) or at the end of the season (September) for rent, another of the best ways to explore the area.
- Edremit bike tours: Unlike in Ayvalık, a bicycle tour is one of the most beautiful things to do in mountainous Edremit.
- Jeep safari tours: Jeep safari tours are one of the most fun activities of the day and are offered in all 4 seasons in the magnificent nature of Edremit and give you the opportunity to participate in it almost every day.
- Hiking and trekking: If you want to explore the area in a more natural way than vehicle excursions, such as bicycle, rental car or jeep tours, you can join nature trekking and trekking and experience exciting times in the Kaz Mountains area in Enjoy Edremit.
- jet skiing and parasailing: If you are a speed lover, we definitely recommend you to try jet skiing, which is the most popular water sport in Ayvalık. Paragliding is a must during the summer holidays, especially in areas like Antalya and Fethiye, and is one of the water sports that you can choose from in Ayvalık.
Excursions from Balikesir
- Ephesus: The ancient city of Ephesus was founded in 6000 BC. Built and carried various civilizations. People who lived in the Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine, Princely and Ottoman periods used this ancient city. There are rumors that the ancient city of Ephesus was founded by female warriors.
- House of the Virgin Mary: The House of the Virgin Mary in the ancient city of Ephesus is a holy place for Catholics and Muslims in Bülbüldağı.
- Temple of Artemis: The Temple of Artemis, one of the seven wonders of the world, was built in 550 BC. built. It is estimated that the construction of the Temple of Artemis took about 120 years.
- Cave of the Seven Sleepers: The Cave of the Seven Sleepers (Yedi Uyuyanlar Mağarası) is located on the hill behind the ancient city of Ephesus and is estimated to have been built in the 5th and 6th centuries. During the excavation of the cave of the dormouse, two were found Catholic Churches and various tombstones discovered. The ancient city of Ephesus is about 2 kilometers from the Cave of the Seven Sleepers.
- Archaeological Museum of Ephesus: The Museum (Efes Arkeoloji Müzesi) displays important historical buildings from the Greek, Byzantine, Seljuk and Ottoman periods excavated in ancient settlements around the ancient city of Ephesus. The museum card is not valid for the Ephesus Museum. Admission to the Ephesus Museum is 10 lira for domestic and foreign tourists.
- Pamukkale and hierapolis: Limestone terraces sculpted by hot water, the ruins of the ancient city of Hierapolis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A little further away but very worth seeing.
- Ruins of the ancient city of Agora: The Izmir Agora was built on the slope of Kadifikale where the ancient city of Smyrna was located in the 4th century AD. This historic city is a national agora and was built during the Hellenistic period. To reach the Agora Ruins you need to take the subway to Konak. The entrance to the Agora Ruins costs 12 TL.
- Smyrna (Tepekule – Bayraklı): Smyrna Tepekule Tumulus Ruins.
- Ancient city of Teos: The ancient city of Teos is located in the southern part of Sığacık village, 5 kilometers from Izmir Seferihisar. The founder of the city was Athamas, son of Dionysus. Its foundation can be traced back to 1000 BC. trace back.
- Asclepion: The ruins of the ancient city of Asklepion in the city Pergamon were one of the most important health centers of antiquity.
- Pergamon Museum: The warehouse was used to store cultural relics found in 1878 during the Bergama excavations in Izmir. It was converted into a museum in 1932 and opened to the public.
- Ancient city of Pergamum: The oldest settlement in Pergamum is the hilltop settlement of Bergama in Izmir, which dates back to the 7th and 6th centuries BC. dates from.
- Lesbos: From Ayvalik you can take a boat to Lesvos and do a sightseeing tour of the Greek islands.
Beaches in Balikesir
Balikesir is a very large province with districts in Marmara and the Aegean region. In this sense, it has the shores of the Marmara Sea and the Aegean Sea and is a highly developed province for sea tourism.
- Sarimsakli Beaches (Sarımsaklı Plajları): Sarimsakli Beach in Ayvalık is one of the most famous districts of Balikesir, 7-8 km from the center of Ayvalık, within the borders of Küçükköy district.
- Badavut Beach (Badavut Plajı): Badavut Beach begins and ends at Sarimsakli Beach on the western part of Sarimsakli Peninsula, which lies within the boundaries of Ayvalik Kucukkoy District. Badavut Beach is 2 kilometers long and 60 meters wide. The beach's water is shallow and clean, with a cool texture like the rest of the area.
- Ocaklar Public Beach: Located in Ocaklar Mahallesi, 6 kilometers north of Erdek town centre. The beach, which was awarded the blue one for its proximity to Erdek Flagge has fine sand and is 200 meters long and 40 meters wide.
- Küçükova bay and beach: The beach is located in İlhan district, 20 km from the center of Erdek. Family picnics and swimming in the bay with no facilities.
- Buyukova Beach: Located within the boundaries of Doğanlar district, 24 km from Erdek city center.
- Doganlar Beach: Located in Doğanlar Mahallesi, about 25 km from Erdek.
- Turankoy Beach: Located on the north side of Kapıdağ Peninsula, opposite Erdek
- Ormanlı Manastır Beach: This beach is located 20 km from Erdek between Turan and Ormanlı districts.
- Ören public beach: One of the most popular beaches in Balikesir is undoubtedly Oren Public Beach in Oren district of Burhaniye district. Burhaniye has more than one beach, the most popular being Ören public beach.
- Altinkum Beach: Altınkum Beach is located about 9-10 km from Edremit, one of the most popular areas in Balikesir, in the nearby Akçay district. The beach has a mixed structure of sand and pebbles. As with the rest of the region, the water is cool and shallow.
- Paterica Bay: There are many pristine bays and beaches on Cunda (Alibey) island in Ayvalık. The most famous of these is Patrica Bay at the beginning of the Paterica Peninsula.
- Akçay Pat Kamp Plajı: Akçay Pat camping beach in the Akçay district of Edremit.
- Karaagac beach: Karaağaç Beach is the main public beach in the area. While communally built changing rooms, showers and umbrellas are free for the public, you can bring your own towels and umbrellas to enjoy the sea.
Bars, Pubs and Clubs in Balikesir
Nightclubs are preferred by those who want to escape the stress of a year in Balikesir and like to dance. In addition, bistros and taverns are the first choice for raki and fish lovers and the main meeting places to enrich Balikesir's nightlife.
Food in Balikesir
Due to its deep-rooted history, Balikesir is one of the regions with different tastes. Must-try flavors include Höşmerim, Ayvalık Toast, Keskek, Balıkesir Cream, Papalina Fish, Susurluk Ayran and Susurluk toast.
Shopping in Balikesir
Local handicrafts, which have been brought by the locals since time immemorial, are a popular purchase option in Balikesir. Especially the Yagcibedir Yörük rugs, each rug has a different meaning, local jams, Balikesir Kolonyası, needle lace unique in the Gonen region, Balikesir honey, magnets with Balikesir history and natural beauty, artisan olive oil is the most important gift.
How much does a holiday in Balikesir cost
Since the costs vary greatly depending on the season and your own preferences, only the average costs are considered here.
Package tour with all inclusive 1 week
- from €300 in the off-season
- from €450 in high season
- from €700 in high season in a 4-star hotel
- more than 900 € in the high season in a 5 star hotel
- Budget hotel or guesthouse with Breakfast: €15 to €30 per day
- Mid-range hotel with all inclusive: €40 to €80 per day
- 5 star high-end hotel with all inclusive: more than 90 € per day
- AirBnB: own room from €10, own apartment from €50
- Return flight from Germany to Balikesir: €70 to €500, depending on season and airline
- Single journey by bus: up to €1
- Airport transfer in collection bus: €10 to €20
- Taxi to the airport: €40 to €50. Private transfer from €35.
- Day trip, for example Pamukkale: 50 € to 70 € incl. entrance fee and food
Eat, Drinks and other:
- Restaurant in tourist area, main course: €7 to €25
- Local restaurant, main course: €3 to €10
- Street food: Simit 50 cents, Rotary €1,50, corn on the cob 50 cents, Dürüm €1,50
- Glass wine in the restaurant: €3
- Glass of beer: €2,50
- Cocktails: from €8
- Bottle of water in store: 50 cents
- Groceries in stores: around 20% cheaper than in Germany
- Food at the bazaar: fruit and vegetables are 40% cheaper than in Germany
- Budget: €40 to €70 per day
- Mid-range: €60 to €100 per day
- High end: from €140 per day
Climate table, weather and the ideal travel time for Balikesir
Balikesir has a Mediterranean climate with hot and dry summers and mild winters. In Balikesir, the summer weather is as beautiful as in any other seaside resorts in Turkey.
|Month||Temperature:||More||Hours of sunshine||Rainydays|
|January||5 - 13 ° C||17 ° C||4||12|
|February||7 - 15 ° C||18 ° C||5||11|
|March||8 - 18 ° C||19 ° C||7||10|
|April||10 - 22 ° C||20 ° C||7||9|
|Mai||15 - 27 ° C||22 ° C||10||7|
|June||20 -32 ° C||23 ° C||12||3|
|July||23 - 33 ° C||25 ° C||12||1|
|August||24 - 33 ° C||26 ° C||10||1|
|September||20 - 32 ° C||26 ° C||9||2|
|October||16 - 28 ° C||22 ° C||8||7|
|November||15 - 22 ° C||20 ° C||7||9|
|December||7 - 16 ° C||17 ° C||5||13|
High season, June to September:
The Weather of Balikesir is influenced by the Aegean Sea. The temperature in summer is 24 to 27°. In summer, the daytime temperatures are still above 30°.
Low season, April and May:
The temperature reached 20° in early April. In mid-April it is usually already 25° warmer. The sea temperature at the beginning of the month is 20°. Until the beginning of May the temperature is 23 to 24°C.
Even in October, the thermometer still reaches 30° for many days in Balikesir, and it rarely rains.
Winter, long-term vacation and Moving abroad
Balikesir winter is mild. It doesn't get cold until the end of December to February. The temperature during the day is rarely below 10°. The temperature during the day is mostly between 15 and 20°. Sometimes even 25° are very pleasant days.