NEOPOLIS or Yılancı Burnu
A peninsula jutting out to sea beyond Güvercinada. It is believed to be the Ionians’ first point of settlement.
Lies a few hundred meters off the road from Davutlar, on the way from Kuşadası to Güzelçamlı National Park. Some sources refer to it as the center of the 12 cities that were part of the Ionian Confederation. A temple was set up here for Poseidon (Neptune), the God of the Sea.
Pygela is located approximately 3 km (1,9 miles) to the north of Kuşadası. Not much remains of the settlement. The coast is a good choice for a day on the beach.
Grand Vizier Öküz Mehmet Paşa had it built in 1618. The mosque was restored in 1830. It has a wooden narthex, a single minaret balcony and an entrance from the right side. The entrance door is inlayed with mother of pearl decorations.
ÖKÜZ MEHMET PAŞA CARAVANSERAI
Öküz Mehmet Paşa had it built in 1618. He was grand vizier during the reigns of Ahmed I and Osman II. He married into the royal family in 1612 through a union with Ahmed I’s daughter. Though he became chief admiral the same year, he was relieved of his duties after an unsuccessful expedition to Sakız (Chios) Island. Öküz Mehmet Paşa was released of his duties once again in 1614 after the campaign to Persia and was then appointed governor of Aydın. He became grand vizier again in 1617 during the reign of Osman II, and had two caravanserais built in Niğde and Kuşadası. Though there are speculations as to where the name “öküz” (ox) comes from, the strongest possibility is that his father worked as a blacksmith for oxen. Historical sources depict him as a smart and gentle man. The caravanserai was built in 1618 as both a customs building and lodging. While one of its two entrances was to the sea and served ships, the other was utilized by caravans and people. The two-story building housed a kitchen, storage and stall area downstairs, with 26 rooms upstairs reserved for caravan owners. The baths and mosque were constructed outside the building so locals could use them as well. The building underwent serious restorations in 1963. In the midst of the structure a beautiful fountain can be seen. Öküz Mehmet Paşa Caravanserai, which was mentioned in the famous Evliya Çelebi travelogue, is currently in use as a boutique hotel, restaurant, shopping and entertainment center.
GUZELCAMLI NATIONAL PARK
At the end of the Dilek Peninsula, this incredibly beautiful national park harbors the clearest and most picturesque sea of the area. You can travel there from Kuşadası in about 45 minutes. The park covers an area of 27 675 hectares (107 sq mi). Semi-domesticated wild boars, horses, deers and hundreds of species of birds are native to the park. Dip Cape, with its deserted beaches sprinkled with sand daffodils, is the closest point to the Greek Island of Samos. The Dilek Strait separates Samos from the National Park. The park has also remarkable numbers of Cypresses and Turkish oaks.