By Friday lunchtime, the course I am giving with the Turkish military has been completed successfully. My flight home to Zürich will not be leaving until noon the next day, so I am at a bit of a loss for what to do, given that it is quite hot in Izmir and there is not really that much to do or see in the city centre, unless you fancy shopping. So instead I decide to head out to Çeşme on the coast which, according to the course participants, has some of the best beaches in Turkey. Çeşme is roughly 80km due west of Izmir and there is a good autobahn all the way. It is a quaint little seaside resort with a nice old town littered with small souvenir shops that sell everything from handmade nargile to stickily sweet lokum. And yes, the beaches really are quite amazing here.
In Çeşme I am staying at the Sheraton. I expect there are probably nicer, more intimate and modern hotels to stay at in Çeşme. However, the Sheraton’s redeeming feature is that it occupies one of the nicest stretches of beach and has a nice garden and pool area. Other than that though, the rooms are starting to look a bit old and dated. But at least they have a very large, well equipped gym.