Kusadasi, or Birds’ Island in Turkish, is known as a “fisher-men’s” village yet originally it was actually a quiet garden where farmers harvested thyme, sage, wild roses, figs, grapes and olives. It is today an animated village.
In the golden years of Ephesus, Kusadasi – then Neapolis – was already a holiday resort for the Ephesians. When the Caystros river silted up, the Byzantines chose Neapolis as the new harbor which they then called “Scala Nova” which became an important commercial center inhabited by Greeks, Armenians, Jewish and Italian business men till the end of WWI.
Kusadası was already conquered by the Ottomans in 1413 and became an independent district in 1865. Till 1954 Kusadasi was bound to the province of Izmir and is today within the boundaries of the province of Aydin.
Today Kusadasi is modern village which offers nice beaches and is an ideal departure place for over 40 different possible one-day tours in the area. Just to name a few : Ephesus, Aphrodisias, Pamukkale & Laodikea, Priene, Miletos, Didyma, Bergama & Izmir, Sardis, Tire & Birgi, Metropolis & Magnesia ad Menderes, The Lake of Bafa & Herakleia, Euromos, Bodrum , Milas & Alabranda, The delta of Karine and the national Park of Dilek, the Greek island of Samos ...
Selcuk, originally a farming town, has been involved into tourism by its proximity to the ruins of Ephesus, the Shrine of Virgin Mary, the basilica of Saint John, the small village of Sirince and many other attractions within the city limit.
Although evidence of settlement as early as 2000BC has been found on the Ayasoluk Hill, the town only really got to life in the Byzantine era (5th century AD) after the harbor of neighbor Ephesus had completely silted up.
Selcuk has plaid an important role in the events of the early Christianity. In the 9th and early 10th centuries, Selcuk has lived a massive emigration of the south Balkan countries, Yoruk nomads, Kurds and gypsies. Each group has its own designated quarter, socializing little with the others.