The myth used for Ayvalık throughout Turkey is “Raki-fish Ayvalık”. Although Ayvalık is a resort town mostly preferred for sea holidays and has many beaches, it would be appropriate to say that the people of Ayvalık are more related to the sea with the dishes that come out of it; especially with raki!
PLACES TO VISIT
It is the place you should not miss among the places to visit in the center of Ayvalık.
Just like in Cunda, this is the Taksiyarhis Church in Ayvalık. Taxiyarhis is a common church name because it means Archangel. There are also many churches with this name in Greece. The exterior of this church in Ayvalık is so modest that we almost didn’t want to skip it. However, the interior is quite magnificent and elegant in neo-classical style.
In fact, this church is the oldest church in all of Ayvalık, but since it is thought to have lived in 3 different periods and has experienced many earthquakes until today, there is no trace of its original form in the 15th century. The church, which was used as a monopoly warehouse since 1927 and remained idle, was restored by the Ministry of Culture in 2012 and opened to visitors as a memorial museum in 2013. Museum Card
La Maison de Barbara is a mansion with artist exchange program. It is named after the French singer Barbara. 1997 is a quality project structure dedicated to the singer who died. The aim of the project is to provide an environment where artists from all disciplines, from Turkey and the world, can stay here for 5 to 16 weeks and carry out their artistic works. It has its own artist selection committee. The artist selected among the applications stays here free of charge and produces works. The only condition is that he/she leaves 2 of his works here. Apart from that, all expenses are covered by the residence.
The neighborhood takes its name from a plant whose Latin is marjoram, Greek is macaron, and Turkish is marjoram. In the past, the Greeks living here used to decorate their bay windows with this plant. Macaron, which consists of magnificent houses from the Greeks, turned into a very pleasant neighborhood with the arrival of cafes, taverns, boutiques and antique shops, and is on its way to becoming the center of social life.
Cunda Island, or Alibey Island, with its current name, stands out as a gourmet destination, especially with its Cretan Cuisine culture. People come here from Ayvalık center and surrounding cities to have raki-fish-meze at their restaurants, to buy the freshest Aegean herbs at the Saturday market, to enjoy the sea on the beaches, to have nostalgia at Taş Kahve, to eat the famous mastic ice cream, curd cookies and bites.
Ayvalık Adalar Nature Park is Turkey’s largest nature park, covering 19 of the 22 islands in Ayvalık. It is a viewing hill in the center of Ayvalık, where you can see these large and small islands, including Devil’s Table and Lesbos Island, as if they were under your feet, with a 360-degree view. It would not be a lie to say that it is the most popular place in Ayvalık because it is crowded every hour of the day. Especially since the sunset is the main event of the Devil’s Table, a handful of hills overflow in the evening. Especially if it is a holiday or holiday period, the hands and arms will not be missing from your frame. The Devil’s Table is definitely one of the places where the sun sets the most in Turkey.