"Small and interesting" Top 5 Page for this destination Iznik by Tdiver

Iznik Travel Guide: 60 reviews and 246 photos

Pottery galore

The town has been known as Nicaea since ancient times and it's present name to the words Eis and Nik, parts of the phrase Eis Ten Nikaieon meaning 'to Nicaea' in Greek. It's history dates back to around 2500 B.C.
Before Nicaea it was known as Helikare then Antigoneia. After the death of Alexander the Great, it's name was changed by the ex-governor of Thrace, Lysimachus to Nicaea after his wife Nike. In A.D.325 it held the first Christian Ecumenical council in the presence of the then Emporer Constantine I. It also held the 7th in the Ayasofia Church, now a museum and in the process of reconstruction and repair, hence closed in A.D. 787. It served as the capital city for both Selcuks and Byzantines. Since the 14th century A.D. it has been known for it's pottery.
Takes about 3 hours if you want to drive from Istanbul, the nearest airport is at Bursa.

Lots of information here, which is also in Turkish and German.
The road (D595) from the turn-off just past Karamursel on the Marmara sea is especially twisty in places until you reach the Iznik lake at Boyalica so be extra careful.
Tourist information office is next to the Hagia Sophia museum, has a very nice free booklet about the sites which has a rough map at the back.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:History, architecture and pottery.
  • Cons:3 hr drive from Istanbul.
  • In a nutshell:Well worth the effort and the scenery is great also.
  • Last visit to Iznik: May 2008
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (7)

Comments (2)

  • mvtouring's Profile Photo
    Aug 30, 2009 at 4:12 AM

    Thanks for great tips, going to be very helpful next month when I visit ;-)

  • janetanne's Profile Photo
    Jul 14, 2008 at 4:03 AM

    Interesting video and tips on Iznik. The pottery, esp. the ones with sailboats, look very much like the pottery from certain Greek islands, ie. Skyros. Certainly must be some Greek influences there.


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