Izmir is the third most populous city in Turkey, after Istanbul and Ankara, and the second-largest urban agglomeration on the Aegean Sea after Athens, Greece. It is on Turkey’s West coast and is technically in Asia, not in Europe. It is a modern city full of history and memories. If are going to visit Turkey, it should definitely be on your list. You can easily spend two days to enjoy this vivid city.
There are a lot of free activities in Izmir, here we list the top 5:
Izmir Mask Museum
This small museum is located in Alsancak in an old three-floor house, on a street full of bars. This museum was opened in 2011 and it is the first and only in Turkey. It includes a large collection of more than 300 ceremonial and decorative masks from all over the world in addition to prominent Turkish masks. Masks made of cardboard, fabric, leather or plastic and used for different purposes. Masks are classified into five different categories: ritual masks, theater masks, Anatolia masks, Death Masks and Traceurs.
Mask workshops are organized in the museum to enable children and youth to express themselves through art and develop their talents.
Visiting Hours from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, and the museum is closed on Sunday and Monday. The admission is free.
Joy and Cartoon Museum
The museum was opened in 2012 after the restoration of an old mansion located in Alsancak by Konak municipality. The works of Turkish humor are on display at the museum, with a design that visitors enjoy greatly. The works of top Turkish cartoonists such as Eflatun Nuri and Güngör Kabakçıoğlu are kept in the museum. There are also workshops for students interested in animation. The museum’s library aims to contribute to the researchers ’work with documents such as books, albums, catalogs, brochures, magazines, records and temporary arts that contain Turkish and international humor visually and text.
Souvenirs decorated with cartoon heroes are sold at the museum shop. The museum is located a few steps from one of the busiest places in Alsancak, Kıbrıs Şehitleri Street, and provides a pleasant atmosphere for its visitors, both in winter and summer.
The museum opens its doors from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM every day except Sunday and Monday. The admission is free.
Ümran Baradan Play and Toy
Konak Municipality opened in 2004 one of the few toy museums in Turkey and the first in Izmir. At the museum, toys collected from different countries are displayed by internationally renowned artist and painter Imran Baradan as well as the works of talented children who win the competitions. The museum houses the most important games in the history of the world made of tin, wood, paper, and plastic from 1850 to 1970, with contributions from the founder of the Istanbul Toy Museum and writer and poet Sanay Akin. There is also an original Turkish family room in the two-floor museum. Toys Museum is within walking distance of the historic Kemer Market.
The museum opens its doors from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM every day except Sunday and Monday. Free admission.
The museum was opened as the first science museum in the Aegean region. The museum is arranged so that people of all age groups can observe the principles and theories that provide the basics of science through “discovery” and learning through experiences. The museum contains 60 educational stations, up to 100 experimental settings and 15 interactive kiosks with the aim of displaying basic science principles or technological developments for people of all ages, but especially in the 12-15 age group and to inform them of the impacts of science and technology in our daily lives.
The museum is located next to MaviBahçe Mall, and the museum opens its doors from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM every day except Sunday.
Radio and Democracy Museum
There are approximately 390 radio museums in the world. Izmir Radio and Democracy Museum is the first and only museum that uses the concept of Radio and Democracy together.
Izmir Radio and Democracy Museum opened its doors on December 5, 2013, with the participation of famous radio programmers and announcers in the historical building known as Asmalı Ev in Basmane – Altınpark region and dated to the early 1900s.
The museum collection consists of about 150 radios, turntables, numerous records, and interactive works. The museum, which consists of six rooms and a library, is arranged chronologically according to important historical events.
Film screenings are organized in the museum on a different subject every month. It is aimed to organize interviews with important radio programmers and bring them together with the public. Creative drama works are carried out for children and adults. At the same time, museum programs aimed at lifelong education are planned for all age groups, and activities are scheduled every month of the year in the form of workshops, speeches and visual presentations.
The museum opens its doors from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM every day except Sunday and Monday. Free admission.
More to see in Izmir