Straddling eastern Europe and western Asia is the beautiful nation of Turkey. Not only famous for its cultural connections to ancient empires, but Turkey is also a house to many mesmerizing islands. You can find islands elsewhere too but the magic of the islands in Turkey is just unimaginable. Not trying to boast but the beauty of these beaches is such that one look at them and you won’t want to go anywhere else.
6 Spectacular Islands In Turkey
With the sheer number of islands, it often becomes difficult for the visitors to choose, but don’t worry because we have done the job for you. Take a look at this list of the best islands in Turkey before proceeding for your vacation!
1. Akdamar Island
The largest island in Lake Van, Akdamar island is popularly known as the island of tolerance. Surrounded with steep rocks that are as high as 80 meters, the island offers a spellbound view all the time but during the spring months, the beauty is at just at another level with the blooming almond trees in the background. With a total territory of 70,000 meter-square, Akdamar islands have a coastal length of 3 kilometers and the highest point is 1912 meters high. This Turkish island is a house to the beautiful Akdamar Cathedral which though has been converted into a monument museum but its religious heritage is still unmatchable, making it one of the most famous islands in Turkey. The church is renovated and is opened for prayer once in a year. During the migratory seasons, the visitors can find the island crowded by several birds most notably by white-winged tern as the island lies along the migratory path of many birds. The island is preferred a lot by picnickers as after sightseeing people can indulge in swimming or can simply enjoy themselves around the almond groves that surround the island. Without visiting this masterpiece island your Turkey island holidays are incomplete.
Location: Off the shores (approximately 4 kilometers from the shore) to the south of the district of Gevas.
How to get here: The island can be easily reached by a boat ride from Gevas roughly in twenty minutes.
2. Bozcaada Island
A perfect place for tourists looking for a peaceful and quiet time among the old Greek houses and historical ruins in the settings, Bozcaada Island is one of the best islands in Turkey. This beautiful island of Turkey is not only the third largest island of the nation but is also one among the two islands that lie in the Aegean Sea belonging to Turkey. Famous for its windmills, vineyards, pretty houses, impressive historic monuments and mesmerizing beaches with crystal clear waters, Bozcaada Islands are a must visit in your Turkey islands vacation. The rocky cliffs surrounding the island makes it a high and a rocky island but still, you can find their many small coves with sand covered beaches. You can even enjoy a delicious meal while admiring the beauty of the place in the restaurants available in the harbor and at Ayazma Beach. Apart from the vast variety of seafood, the island made wine is just a wonderful companion. Instilling an adventurous streak in you the hardest part at the island is the bike trip around the island after which you can finally sit back and spend the rest of the day relaxing. Though a bit small in size, spending time at this dreamy island of Bozcaada will ensure grabbing a large part in your memories and heart.
Location: Çanakkale province, Aegean Sea
How to get here: A ferryboat transportation service to Bozcaada Island is easily available the whole day. However, the only mainland with a ferry connection which can accommodate cars to Bozcaada is Geyikli Yukyeri Port. For directly reaching from Canakkale to Bozcaada passenger-only fast ferry service is also available.
3. Cunda Island
One of the most beautiful islands in Turkey, it is a perfect unforgettable holiday resort for the visitors looking for a peaceful vacation in a natural atmosphere. Cunda Island, a typical Aegean resort town is also known as Alibey Island and houses a lot of historical places like churches, monasteries, and mosques. The place is encircled by a beautiful natural beach where the endless blue and the eternity of the sea fills the heart with pleasure, small and large restaurants along the shore serving fish, surrounded by many neoclassical buildings with the calm green of pine and olive trees attract the visitors. Exploring the Cunda Island in which the back streets are full of crumbling Greek houses clustering around the remains of huge Taksiyarhis Church will transport you back in time for more than 100 years. The island is one of the beauty spots on the Turkish islands map inviting visitors from all over the world ensuring them to fascinate with its spirit reflecting the Aegean culture.
Location: Balıkesir province, Aegean Sea
How to get here: You can reach here in only 15 minutes by a boat ride from Ayyalik coast. You can even reach here by bus, walking or by using the bridge which is the first and currently the oldest build present in Turkey that connects lands separated by a strait. However, sailing on the peaceful and vast sea feels much better than the other options available.
Suggested Read: 9 Best Things To Do In Ankara To Witness A Unique Side Of Turkey
4. Chios Island
Along Turkey’s eastern and western coasts are a few Greek islands which you can club in your Turkey islands vacation to visit two countries in a single trip. Located in the north-eastern Aegean lies Chios, it is so close that one can even swim till there. Being the only place having the trees that produce mastic – the magical medicine that is used to treat a variety of ailments naturally the place is quite famous for its mastic gum production. This magical gum grows on the trees in the shape of a tear and is also referred to as a tear that relieves and heals. Apart from mastic gum, you can also grab a beer and some shrimp as well from the restaurants. Therefore, during your trip to Turkey, don’t miss to visit these Turkish islands near Greece.
Location: 7 km away from Cesme in Turkey
How to get here: To reach Chios you need to first get to Cesme which you can easily reach in around 1.75 hours by a bus journey from Izmir.
5. Princes’ Islands
A relief for the residents of Istanbul especially during the hot summer months, Princes’ Islands is the common name for the nine islands that lie off the Asian coast of Istanbul. Some of these include Buyukada, Heybeliada, Burgazada, and Kinaliada. Visiting these islands will ensure you a perfect way to escape the overcrowded places in the city and a pleasant time in nature premises. You just need to choose an island from the group of nine islands and a board of ferry and then prepare yourself for a breath-taking view that you would be witnessing. However, if you are keen then you can even visit a few of these islands in a single day but it will require it a bit of quick travel. Once on these islands, you can have a bike tour or simply stroll to explore the streets which are lined with beautiful wooden mansions and gardens with the view of the distant city spreading out in the background. You can either relax in this mesmerizing view sipping tea and enjoying nature’s remarkable work or you can even visit some of the nice beaches that are a part of the Princes’ islands. These breath-taking beaches have crystal clear blue waters and are very clean and suitable for swimming. A bit of relaxation and a bit of activity the Princes’ Islands are hard to resist. Though there aren’t any party islands in Turkey, the happening vibes of these island in Princes’ more than make up for that.
Location: A cluster of 9 islands lying southeast of Istanbul in the Sea of Marmara
How to get here: You can either take a ferry or a sea bus from Eminonu, Kabatas, Kadikoy or Bostanci to reach these islands.
6. Gokceada Island
Popular for it’s untouched and protected natural reserves and bizarre landscapes, Gokceada is the largest island in Turkey. In Homer’s epic The Iliad, it is called the island of the Poseidon, the Sea God. It is also known for its absolutely clean waters and the virgin lands that lure in both domestic as well as foreign travelers. The island is home to multi-colored pine trees and dense olive groves that make it a favorite of all nature lovers. It’s unusual terrain and matchless natural beauty has landed it on the top in the list of islands in Turkey.
Being a perfect place for vacation, Turkey is always packed with tourists. Though there are many other things to do, the top spots in the priority list for the tourists have mostly been grabbed by islands. Out of the many islands in Turkey, we have tried to filter out the best to give you a pleasant picture of what you are about to witness in your upcoming Turkish vacation But if you know of any more islands on the Turkey map, let us know in the comments below.
Frequently Asked Questions About Islands In Turkey
A. Imbros is the largest island in Turkey.
A. There are approximately 500 islands in Turkey.