Most individuals suppose they know Turkey. In spite of everything, it’s simply Istanbul, Ankara, Antalya, and some seaside resorts, proper? WRONG! Turkey is a large nation, and there are such a lot of small cities and resorts to go to, lots of which fly proper below the radar. I’ve spent years residing and touring round Turkey. In case you’re on the lookout for a chilled-out, lovely, and cultural spot to go to, I’ve bought the right place for you.
Why This Lesser-Recognized Gem in Turkey is a High Vacation spot for 2024
With no scarcity of gorgeous locations to go to in Turkey, it’s straightforward to be spoiled for selection, however Urla ought to positively be in your record of locations to not miss. This chilled-out seaside location has the whole lot you would probably need for a break within the solar, with an enormous dose of tradition for good measure. Forbes named Urla as among the finest locations to journey in 2024, and I agree; let’s take a look at why.
1. Wine, Wonderful Wine!
Urla sits proper in the course of one in every of Turkey’s largest wine areas; in reality, there’s even a wine route known as Urla Bağ Yolu, which takes you to some top-quality spots for wine manufacturing. Urlice is without doubt one of the finest wineries across the space, in a wonderful setting with a incredible restaurant on web site. USCA Vineyards is a specific favourite of mine, providing free wine tasting, and MMG Vineyard provides some gorgeous views over the countryside past.
You won’t have thought that Turkish wine was a factor, however belief me, it’s scrumptious. Most of it’s distributed domestically, so it’s not one thing you’re prone to discover outdoors of the nation. However that simply means you should purchase a couple of bottles to take residence.
2. A Chilled-Out Seaside Vacation spot
A lot of Turkey’s prime seaside resorts change into extraordinarily busy through the peak summer season months, however when you choose a extra stress-free and serene seaside day, Urla matches the invoice. Akarca Plaji is a superb spot, with impossibly clear water and tender sand; I’d advocate this seaside for households particularly as as the ocean is calm and shallow. Yat Limani Seashore and Akkum Plaji are different prime seashores to spend a couple of hours.
The summer season climate positively helps invite you to the seaside – Urla’s hottest month is July, with a mean of 31°C/89°F; making a day splashing within the sea a must-do. Nonetheless, in my expertise, regardless of the ‘common’ temperature quoted, it typically feels lots hotter attributable to humidity, so all the time bear in mind solar safety.
3. A lot of Native Festivals
Annual festivals are an effective way to be taught extra in regards to the tradition of an space, and Urla has loads all year long. The Artichoke Competition may sound like an odd one, but it surely spans over three days throughout April and it’s an actual crowd-pleaser; I’m not the largest fan of artichokes, however I loved the neighborhood vibe regardless. The Grape Harvest Competition and the Urla Jazz Competition are different noteworthy occasions so as to add to your calendar.
There are additionally typical, yearly celebrations that happen, equivalent to New Yr’s Eve, and spiritual Bayram festivals to attend. Throughout these instances, the entire city comes collectively to have fun and there’s such an satisfying vibe within the air. I’d advocate you guide your resort early to keep away from disappointment, but it surely’s greater than price it for the expertise.
4. Wonderful Meals
Urla is legendary for its artichokes, therefore the yearly competition devoted to the vegetable. That is the very best place in the entire of Turkey to strive conventional artichoke dishes, equivalent to stuffed artichokes and lamb. After all, you too can discover genuine Turkish meals in Urla, and since it’s much less touristic, you’ll have a greater probability of having fun with real, native fare.
Urla can also be a prime spot for recent fish and also you’ll discover loads of native eating places to strive. I went to Sahil Restaurant and had a tremendous meal, together with a number of the finest shellfish I’ve ever had. Every thing is freshly caught that day and the view is gorgeous.
5. A Nice Base for Exploring Additional
Urla is simply half an hour away from Izmir, which means you may have a chilled-out seaside break mixed with metropolis enjoyable. You possibly can take a guided tour of Ephesus, which is simply an hour away, and also you’re simply 25 minutes away from lovely Alaçatı. I’d positively advocate you head to Ephesus on the very least; it’s one in every of my favourite locations on the planet and it feels such as you’re proper there within the second.
All of because of this Urla is a superb spot to base your self and discover the world additional when you select. After all, you may resolve to stay round and benefit from the calm vibe in Urla itself, however a minimum of you might have the choice ought to the temper take you. However when you ask me, the temper ought to take you …
6. The Native Art work
Urla’s Sanat Sokağı, or Artwork Avenue, is a superb place to discover native paintings and buy souvenirs to take again residence. Visiting this avenue is an effective way to help native artists and acquire one thing actually genuine in return. Right here, yow will discover native pottery, pictures, work, handmade jewellery, and even do-it-yourself cleaning soap merchandise and when you haggle, you’ll get them cheaper.
This isn’t a spot for big malls and large bazaars, which implies buying in Urla usually is a extra laid-back expertise. However, for anybody who enjoys genuine merchandise and particularly artwork, it’s a vacation spot to run towards.
7. The Highway Much less Traveled
Urla is an up-and-coming space, which implies it’s neither crowded nor bustling; that’s what I loved most about it. Most individuals head to Izmir itself or go to Çesme or Alaçatı, and whereas these are incredible spots too, Urla provides a extra genuine and stress-free expertise.
It’s not off the overwhelmed observe per se, but it surely does offer you a style of the ‘actual’ Turkey, moderately than the vacationer model. For that cause, Urla is a superb place to go to—earlier than everybody realizes how nice it’s and the key will get out.
Turkey has many hidden gems, and I depend Urla as one in every of them to not be missed. A incredible space for wineries, nature, gastronomy, and seaside life, Urla will present you a slower tempo of life, which is a superb aid from any on a regular basis stresses and worries.
Whilst you won’t discover it on an everyday search of the most well-liked locations to go to in Turkey, it’s not prone to keep that manner for lengthy. So, I like to recommend you intend your journey now, when you can benefit from the genuine vibe in complete peace and quiet.