Ayvalik travel guide

In the Ayvalık travel guide, we talked about the transportation route, food alternatives, accommodation opportunities, gift options and activities.

Elif Aksüt
Elif Aksüt 2023-03-11
Ayvalik travel guide

When we prepare our holiday items and set off on a pleasant journey, the Aegean Region comes first among the destination routes that decorate our dreams. When the green nature and the deep blue sky, where the olive-scented streets of the Aegean end, come together, it is enough to make every view almost magical. While every corner of the Aegean is the scene of a postcard image reminiscent of paradise, the historical beauties adorning its streets make a cultural discovery indispensable. Balıkesir region is one of the indispensable destinations of holidaymakers for an Aegean travel route that has been dreaming for a long time. While exploring a nature where you can feel spiritually vigorous in Balıkesir, the unique route of the Aegean, there are also boutique shops where you can find traces of the past at every point. Ayvalık, one of the charming districts of Balıkesir, is one of the indispensable routes when it comes to the North Aegean. There are many sightseeing spots where you can find the opportunity to discover historical and natural beauties in Ayvalık, the unique route for those seeking tranquility. Moreover, you can enjoy swimming freely in the deep blue Aegean Sea while exploring the Ayvalık excursion route. While discovering the hidden beauties of the city of Ayvalık, you can also find camping areas where you will meet with advanced service facilities and comprehensive accommodation alternatives. In order to find the camping areas that will make your Ayvalık travel guide meaningful, you can evaluate the guide named “14 free and paid campsites in Ayvalık”. We answered some questions about food alternatives, camping facilities, entertainment life, beach and souvenirs that we guide with your preferences every week. Let's evaluate together.


Ayvalik Travel Guide

How to go to Ayvalık?

Ayvalik Transport

When you set off for the Ayvalık district of Balikesir, the paradise of the blue, you can choose public transportation or a private vehicle for your travel route. Although your preference will be for public transportation on your way to Ayvalık, many transportation alternatives welcome you. You can use the air, sea and land routes to go to Ayvalık. Ayvalık has a distance of 423 km from Istanbul, 680 km from Ankara, 280 km from Bursa and approximately 128 km from Balıkesir city center. As a result of these distances, you can reach Ayvalık district by road in 5 and a half hours from Istanbul, 8 hours from Ankara, 3 and a half hours from Bursa and 1 hour and 50 minutes from Balıkesir city center. “How to get to Ayvalık?” At the transportation point specific to your question, you can also evaluate different alternatives such as airway and seaway together with land.

  • Road transportation to Ayvalık: Thanks to its central location on the map, Ayvalık offers easy transportation from many cities by land. In this way, we can say that the land route is one of the most preferred methods on the route to Ayvalık. In order to reach Ayvalık by land, you can first choose the buses that have regular flights from various cities. When you get on the bus from your city, you can get off at Ayvalık Bus Terminal located at 150 Evler Mahallesi. If you prefer Balıkesir Bus Terminal for your destination, you can easily reach your destination by using the Ayvalık county minibuses, which have regular flights at the end of the journey. Another transportation alternative you can use when going to Ayvalık is the train. You can get off at Balıkesir stop by taking the İzmir-Eskişehir line with TCDD's Blue Train services. After getting off at the train station, you can easily reach Ayvalık with the transfer buses.
  • Sea transportation to Ayvalık: Seaway is one of the most impressive and easy transportation methods you can choose to reach Ayvalık. You can go to Bandırma in about 2 hours by using the sea buses departing from Yenikapı and Bostancı on the way from Istanbul to Ayvalık. Then, after a 3-hour journey, you can reach Ayvalık. You can also reach Ayvalık in about 2 hours by ferry and sea buses departing from Lesbos.
  • Air transportation to Ayvalık: As in every city, the airline is one of the leading methods that provide convenience in transportation to Ayvalık district of Balikesir. You can go to the airport in your city and choose the flights departing in the direction of Balikesir. When you arrive at Balıkesir Kocaseyit Airport, you can reach the district, which is approximately 45 km away, by taxi or minibus.

Regardless of your choice of transportation alternatives on your way to Ayvalık, you can set out on an adventure where you will discover the blue. Thanks to the beauties you have seen on the way to Ayvalık, we can say that although the road is long, it will be very enjoyable.


In which months to go to Ayvalık?

Ayvalik Summer Season (Mert Kahveci)

One of the main reasons why Balikesir's Ayvalık district is a favorite route for holidaymakers is its unbearable heat. Although the Mediterranean climate prevails in Ayvalık, the imbat and breeze winds that come regularly from the Kaz Mountains eliminate the possibility of experiencing sweltering heat. You can safely choose the city of Ayvalık for a quiet holiday route, as there is not a very high and sweltering temperature level in the district. As a result of the climate characteristics of Ayvalık, if swimming is among your holiday dreams, you can set your departure date between June and September. In addition, Ayvalık, which is frequently preferred for winter holidays, has a warm and rainy winter season. Therefore, for a relaxing getaway in winter, you can visit Ayvalık in April-May or October-November.


What to Eat in Ayvalık?

Ayvalik Toast (Yemek.com)

Balikesir's Ayvalık district offers different flavors in its dishes as well as its natural and cultural beauties. In Ayvalık delicacies, you can find the most distinctive local flavors, Greek appetizers and seafood. Ayvalık toast, stuffed with mastic, curd dessert, Cretan roasted chickpeas and papalina are among the indispensable local delicacies of Ayvalık. At this point, although there are many flavors adorning the menu of Ayvalık restaurants, "Ayvalık Toast" is the first snack you should not leave without eating after you arrive on the route. The famous toast, which has gained fame in the Ayvalık region, differs greatly from the normal ones, from the production stage to the materials used in it. The most distinctive flavor of Ayvalık Toast is sausage, tomato and cheese. You can eat the toast, which is famously popular in Ayvalık, at the Hacıoğlu Aşkın Tost House on Atatürk Boulevard, next to İşbank. You can also find different alternatives to eat Ayvalık Toast at Tostçular Bazaar in the center of Ayvalık.

Another suggestion from the brand new flavor discoveries that you will discover as soon as you step into Ayvalık will be on Greek appetizers. In Ayvalık, which was the land of the Greeks in the past, the Greeks are still the owners of many shops actively. In this way, you can encounter Greek, Armenian, Circassian and Jewish appetizers in every restaurant you step in, especially while visiting Cunda. If you want to relax in mystical places while discovering Greek flavors in Ayvalık, our recommendation would be to the Rum Tavern Now. Serving in a stone building built in the year Atatürk was born, the tavern was restored over time and gained its present mystical appearance. Now you can taste delicious fish while trying Greek, Circassian, Armenian and Jewish appetizers at the Greek Tavern. You can also go to Lal Crete Cuisine, Ayna, Bay Nihat Restaurant and Nesos Restaurant to discover unique routes where you can experience Greek flavors in Ayvalık.

Another Greek delicacy you can discover in Ayvalık is Papalina. The Papalina fish, named after the Greeks, is only found in the Ayvalık region. Although the papalina fish resembles a mixture of sardines and anchovies, unlike them, it can be eaten with all its bones and head. You can prefer August and September to consume Papalina, which usually starts to come out towards the end of the summer season, in a fresh way. When you consume Papalina, which is served in the form of frying, at other times, you can also come across a service taken out of the freezer.


Where to Camp in Ayvalık?

Cunda Mocamp

There are many camping facilities where you can end a pleasant day in comfort while exploring Ayvalık, which fascinates those who see it with its nature, entertainment and culture. You can set up your own tent in the camping facilities, which are separated from each other for a fee and free of charge, or you can benefit from various accommodation alternatives such as bungalows, apartments, caravans or glamping offered by the facility. Our first suggestion from Ayvalık camping areas will be Cunda Mocamp. Located on Üçkuyular Street in Ayvalık, Cunda Mocamp has been able to offer comfort to its guests with a fascinating location on the seafront since 1990. You can set up your own tent or make use of the caravan parking area in the facility, which is easily accessible by private vehicle and public transportation. In addition, you can rent bungalow houses specially prepared by the facility, which include air conditioning, quilts, pillows, television, chairs, mirrors and cabinets. Cunda Mocamp, which is the favorite of Ayvalık camping areas, also offers fun activities combined with comfortable accommodation alternatives. At the property, you can spare time for activities such as football, volleyball, basketball or spend peaceful times on the beach.


Another comfortable camping area that we can recommend to the Ayvalık travel guide will be Ayayorgi Beach Club. Combining comfort and fun details, the property took its name from the Aya Yorgi Monastery, which was built on Pigeon Island in 1740. Aya Yorgi Beach Club, which has been meeting with holidaymakers since 2018 by maintaining its quality service policy, also offers different accommodation alternatives. You can set up your own tent at the property or take advantage of the rental options. You can also take advantage of the caravan parking area and rent bungalow rooms for a specified fee. Another feature that distinguishes the Aya Yorgi Beach Club facility from the Ayvalık camping areas is that it has a swimming pool. In this way, you can use your preference for both the sea and the pool for swimming during the summer vacation.


What Activities Are Done in Ayvalık?

Ayvalık Culture Trip Windmills (Arda Cetin)

Bringing together the many beauties of nature, Ayvalık offers a variety of activities to try, as well as experience cruise exploration. In Ayvalık, you have the opportunity to double your holiday pleasure by doing activities where you will discover the deep blue Aegean Sea. For this, you can spare time for enjoyable activities such as parasailing, scuba diving, swimming, jet skiing or bananas in Ayvalık. Our first suggestion for activities in the Ayvalık travel guide will be "parasailing" for those who love both fun and adventure. Parasailing, which is the most preferred activity in the region recently, is done by taking off with a parachute attached to the back of the speedboat. In this way, we can say that the activity will promise you more enjoyable and adventure-filled memories than you expect. You can do water sports, where you can reach the peaks of entertainment with the pleasure of flying over the sea, with many companies located by the sea.

Another suggestion in Ayvalık, where you can observe a lush nature besides the blue, is "boat tours". Starting from Cunda Island, you can find traces of heaven on earth with the Ayvalık Islands tour, which reaches about twenty. With boat tours departing from Ayvalık and Sarimsakli routes, you can have the chance to observe different coves and dive in the clarity of a deep blue water. Boat tours, the most famous activity of recent times in Ayvalık, start in the morning and continue until the sun goes down. In this way, you can find the opportunity to spend most of the day on the Ayvalık Islands.

Of course, it is impossible not to experience a cultural trip while exploring different activities in the Ayvalık travel guide. While walking on the charming streets of the town, you can take steps between historical buildings and feel yourself belong to ancient history. Especially when you walk in the historical streets of Cunda, you can give the right to a trip to Ayvalık with the smell of fish in your nose. “Windmills” comes first among the routes that deserve to be the main element of a cultural trip while walking around the streets of Cunda. There are about three windmills in Cunda. The first mill was restored by a private enterprise and turned into a restaurant and winery. While the second mill was restored by Rahmi Koç, the third one continues to preserve its naturalness. Whatever your preference, we recommend you to see the historical windmills and discover the iconic beauties of the region.


How is the entertainment life in Ayvalık?

Sandik Beach Club

Bringing Turkish and Greek cultures together, Ayvalık, the pearl of the North Aegean, has entertainment venues that appeal to many entertainment understandings with different concepts. You can witness an entertainment life that surrounds the streets until the first light of the morning, thanks to the atmosphere of these places whose dose of entertainment never decreases. For those who want to explore the entertainment life in Ayvalık, many venues such as Sandık Beach Club, Beyoğlu Lounge and Brasserie are listed. Our first recommendation for holidaymakers who want to keep the dose of entertainment high in the Ayvalık travel guide will be Sandık Beach Club. Sandık Beach Club, located on the Ayvalık Sarimsakli coast, is one of the places where the dose of entertainment does not decrease. In this way, the venue, which has managed to become one of the famous venues of the region, attracts a lot of attention with entertainment filled with loud music.

Beyoğlu Lounge and Brasserie will be another suggestion where you can experience the entertainment life to its fullest in Ayvalık. In Beyoğlu Lounge and Brasserie, which are among the most authentic places in Ayvalık, you can meet with very delicious food options combined with an interesting decoration. Moreover, a live performance show by a different artist is held at the venue every day. Thanks to the entertaining alternatives it offers, we can say that Beyoğlu Lounge and Brasserie has hosted countless guests, domestic and foreign.


Where to go to the sea in Ayvalık?

Ayvalik Beaches (Mert Kahveci)

There are many convenient spots where you can swim in the Ayvalık travel guide, which has managed to get its share from the relaxing blue of nature. The sandy structure and clear view of many beaches in the region are enough to double your sea pleasure. Although there are many routes where you can swim in Ayvalık, there are some popular beaches where you can have a pleasant time with your family. Among these options, there are routes such as Badavut Beach, Sarimsakli Beach, Altinova Beach, Patriça Bay, Ortunc Bay, Çataltepe Beach, Duba Beach and Pigeon Bay. Likewise, this list is followed by routes such as Ören Public Beach, Altınoluk Beach, Güre Beach, Pissa Beach, Killik Bay, Zindancık Bay, Hanımın Bay and Hayıtlı Bay.

“Where to swim in Ayvalık?” Badavut Beach is at the beginning of the first advice we can give specifically to the question. The sea of Badavut Beach, located in the center of Ayvalık, has a very clear and sandy ground. Thus, you can have the chance to enjoy the summer holiday accompanied by a fascinating beauty. However, it is useful to remember that the sea is not very shallow and can become deep in an instant. Another suggestion from the areas to swim in Ayvalık will be in the direction of Sarimsakli Beach. Sarimsakli Beach, located in the Küçükköy region, has a shallow structure unlike Badavut Beach. In this way, you can enjoy the sea holiday with your family.


What to buy in Ayvalık?

Ayvalik Bazaar (Berra Metin)

After giving the Ayvalık travel guide its due, you may want to return with a memory to your loved ones. Likewise, an Ayvalık figure that will be placed in the most beautiful corner of your home will remind you of the sea-scented streets of Ayvalık. Olive is one of the things that you should not return without buying from Ayvalık. In Ayvalık, where you can reach the most delicious and high quality olives, you can increase the options and buy olive oil or olive soaps. It is not possible to come all the way to the Ayvalık region and not carry a cultural texture into your own home. Therefore, you can buy ceramics, tiles or embroideries where you can discover the handicraft culture of the region while wandering the streets of Ayvalık. For this, you can visit Ayvalık center, Sarimsakli or Cunda.

“What to buy in Ayvalık?” in the Ayvalık travel guide. Our special bonus advice for those who ask will be to go to the flea market. There is nothing new in Ayvalık Flea Market, which is among the best markets in Turkey. The flea market, where most of the old products are sold, is open on Saturdays. In the Ayvalık flea market, where you can explore places such as Antique Sapa, Fidan Handicrafts and Aristaios, you can find pieces from the Aegean region from Lesbos, Crete and Cunda, and even very old items from the Ottoman region. If you can't take your heart from the old weather, we definitely recommend you to explore the flea market in Ayvalık.


We have come to the end of our weekly exploration article with an Ayvalık travel guide where we explore the olive-scented streets of Ayvalık. After exploring the guide, you can search for a list where you can explore camping areas while visiting Ayvalık, and you can evaluate options along with service and activity opportunities on our "Ayvalık campsites" page. If your heart is not leaving the Aegean, we recommend that you take a look at the “Fethiye travel guide” article we prepared before. At the end of the Ayvalık travel guide, we wish you a good time in advance for a pleasant route you have dreamed of.

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