Ancient pomegranate trees shade a rocky trail leading up to the Greek amphitheatre of Erythrae. Unlike the human maelstrom at sites like Ephesus, visitors here are few, even in summer. We felt free to test the acoustics. Nearby a sun-wizened old man was minding a hobbit-hole. In the dark interior, on a dusty floor, lay dusty fragments of mouldings and ceramics. Explaining (eventually) we were from England he smiled broadly then proudly spoke his two words of English: "Manchester United".
It's well worth stopping on the way there or back at one of the small roadside cafes on the coast road between Çeşme and Illdir. They have shaded terraces with spectacular views over the Aegean Sea and islands. Try an Akitma, thin Turkish crêpes, cooked to order and filled with Feta-type, crumbly fresh cheese. Wash it down with Ayran, a suprisingly delicious cold drink of yogurt mixed with water and salt.
Illdir, on the coast road about 1 hour north of Çeşme.
Tourist information office: Çeşme (fax 232-712 6653) - it's by the harbour at iskele Meydanı 6.
Google map: bit.ly/13aWLKm
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