Alaçatı – Seferihisar: 70 kilometers
SIĞACIK & SEFERİHİSAR
Those who prefer a “slower” adventure should take Seferihisar, the first town to get the Slow City (Citta Slow) title in Turkey, into their routes.
%100 Ecological market on Sundays is the most eco-friendly and the cheapest organic market of Turkey. It is a project designed to promote organic agriculture and prioritize the local farmers and small scale producers who rely on agriculture. A paradise for people who try to follow a healthy diet and love natural delicacies, this market also has a library with publications on ecology and an area for children to play. Another local market also takes place on the same day in Sığacık, where fruits and vegetables produced by the locals and their home made dishes can be found.
The market is not the only attraction in Seferihisar, the town itself is worth seeing. Tunç Soyer, the idealist mayor of Seferihisar who later on got elected mayor to the İzmir Metropolitan Municipality managed to develop the town while preserving its nature, history, artisanship and cuisine. The criterion to include the “Slow City” title includes environmental policies, infrastructure, city texture, local production and hospitality standards. Bringing eco-friendly principles applied to restaurants serving local food, markets offering regional products, landscaping projects with solar energy, free bike rental services and cycling roads and replacement of plastic bags, Seferihisar has also managed to involve women in production. The locals who are now able to sell their products without a third party, started using the empty lands in the village and became the most eco conscious people in Turkey through educational policies. Home to “Peninsula’s Seed Exchange Festival”, Seferihisar stands as a successful model for civilization, proving that civil construction and trade are not the only ways for development, but preservation of towns and regions with their roots and traditions can also help towns gain value.
What to do in Seferihisar: Start the day with a walk in the marina and go for surfing or enjoy the sun and sea at Akkum beach. At sunset you can go up the bastions of Sığacık Castle built by the Genoese overlooking the marina and its surroundings and visit the historical houses inside the castle area. For those willing to discover the underwater world in Aegean’s crystal waters, Teos Ekmeksiz Koyu is the right place. Teos, one of the 12 Ionian towns in the region, is home to the largest Dionysos Temple of the ancient world, agora, theatre, odeon, walls and pier ruins.
Where to eat in Seferihisar: Sefertası Lokantası, located next to the local market, offers Cretan Armola cheese, stuffed bread, stuffed artichoke, mantı (a kind of Turkish pasta with mincemeat) with nuts, sweet tarhana (a kind of Turkish soup with tomato and yoghurt), stuffed lamb along with other regional desserts such as samsades, mandaline and baklava. The bakery has delicious breads coming out of wood stoves with delicious smells. Liman Restaurant in Liman Square and Deniz Restaurant on Akkum Street are the best seafood options with specialties like fish casserole, fish in milk, and octopus casserole. On the way to Seferihisar, Köylüm offers rich breakfast menus prepared with natural products.
(You need a car to visit Seferihisar. Seferihisar is about 70 kms from Alaçatı village.)