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Çanakkale, a vibrant city located on the Asian side of the Dardanelles Strait, is a destination teeming with history, culture, and natural beauty. This region is hilly, covered by fields of agriculture, olive trees, as well as subtropical areas of pine forests.

Whether you’re a history buff, an outdoor enthusiast, or simply looking to immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of Turkish traditions, Çanakkale offers a myriad of must-visit attractions that are sure to captivate your senses. This city has something for everyone, from ancient ruins to stunning beaches, famous battlefields, and mouthwatering cuisine.

Join us as we explore the top 10 Things to See in Çanakkale – a city guaranteed to leave an indelible mark on your heart and mind.


First inhabited during the Bronze Age roughly 6,000 years ago, what is now present-day Çanakkale has seen countless invading armies pass through the area and has been under the rule of several states. The area is the setting of the epic love story Hero and Leander from Greek mythology, and the legendary Trojan Wars also famously took place nearby, as did the Gallipoli Campaign, the most well-known battle between the Allied Forces and the Ottomans in World War I.

City Center of Çanakkale

Çanakkale is a mid-sized city, growing in recent years. The peripheral looks modern and relatively new, but the city’s center is quite old, holding on to the historical character of the past. Explore the quarters with narrow streets full of souvenirs, traditional crafts, and other shops, cafes, and restaurants. Some other historical landmarks in the city center are the Clock Tower, the City Museum, and the Armenian Apostolic Church.

A special hidden gem is the Rhapsodos Mozaik a site with a mosaic exhibition that tells the story of Troy attractively. The story is portrayed by 43 mosaic pictures- a worth-seeing site by art lovers.


Çanakkale Martyrs Monument

Çanakkale Martyrs Memorial, also known as Çanakkale Sehitleri Aniti, is a historic landmark in the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey. The memorial is dedicated to the soldiers who lost their lives during the Battle of Gallipoli, which took place during World War I.


The Gallipoli Peninsula

The Gallipoli Peninsula is known for its significant role in World War I. The peninsula, which stretches from the Aegean Sea to the Dardanelles Strait.

Here is where The Battle of Gallipoli occurred between April 1915 and January 1916. It was a military campaign fought between the Allied powers, primarily Britain and France, and the Ottoman Empire. The Allies aimed to capture Istanbul and gain control of the strategic Dardanelles Strait, providing them a direct passage to Russia. However, the Ottomans fiercely defended their land, resulting in a prolonged and brutal battle.

Galillop Penisula

Hang out on the Kordon

The promenade is known as the “Kordon in Turkey, and here in Çanakkale, it is the place to relax with the locals and catch sunset views over the Gallipoli Peninsula. You will find food stalls selling everything from roasted corn on the cob to ice cream (dondurma). In the late evening, you will find people picnicking on the lawn or playing a Turkish domino game called “okey” at one of the coffee shops. Many restaurants adorn this area as a beautiful place to enjoy an evening meal.

The Ancient City of Troy and the Trojan Horse

Perhaps the most well-known site in the Çanakkale area is the ruins of the ancient city of Troy, famous for fighting a ten-year war with the Greeks. However, the most famous symbol of that war won’t be found among the site’s excavated building foundations. The world-famous Trojan Horse, or at least an accurate representation, can be found 35 kilometers north on Çanakkale’s waterfront boardwalk.

Although it is thought that the Trojan Horse is tied to the ancient city of Troy, it is actually a film prop used in the 2004 film Troy, which led to it being a popular site to visit in Çanakkale. The Trojan Horse is located near the waterfront plaza (not in the ancient city of Troy), making it a nice place to stroll on the beautiful coastline.

To visit the archeological site of Troy, you must travel about twenty miles south of Çanakkale in a village called Tevfikiye. This site was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1998. This ancient city is one of the world’s most famous archeological sites, with its historical past dating back to 3000 BC.

  • Hours: 8:30 – 20:00
  • Admission: 200TL pp
Ancient City of Troy

Museum of Troy

Delve into the region’s history and see a collection of artifacts from ancient settlements, including Troy, at the Museum of Troy. Known for its mention in Homer’s epic poem, the Iliad, Troy is one of the most famous archaeological sites in the world.

In addition, the museum features artifacts from other ancient cities in the region, such as Assos and Alexandria Troas. These cities were important centers of civilization in ancient times and have left behind a wealth of archaeological treasures.

Visitors to the Troy Museum can expect to see diverse exhibits, including pottery, jewelry, sculptures, and coins. The museum also offers educational displays and interactive exhibits that help visitors understand the historical and cultural significance of the artifacts.

  • Hours: 8:30 – 19:30
  • Admission: 200TL pp
Museum of Troy

Çanakkale Clock Tower

The Çanakkale Clock Tower is a magnificent landmark that attracts tourists from all over the world with its impressive architecture and rich historical significance.

Built-in 1897, the Çanakkale Clock Tower stands tall in the heart of the city’s main square. The clock is a masterpiece, with intricate designs and Arabic numerals marking the hours.

Aside from its aesthetic appeal, the Çanakkale Clock Tower holds great historical significance. During the famous Battle of Gallipoli in World War I, Çanakkale was a crucial strategic point. The tower symbolized resilience and resistance for the Turkish people during this time. It is a testament to the bravery and sacrifice of those who fought in the Gallipoli campaign.

Çimenlik Castle (Çimenlik Kalesi)

The Çimenlik Castle, built in 1462 by Fatih Sultan Mehmet II, played a crucial role in defending the Dardanelles Strait. The castle is located at the narrowest point of the Dardanelle Strait,

In a park close to Çimenlik Castle is a park called Military Naval Museum has been the home of a replica of the Nusret Mine Layer, an Ottoman Naval ship that sank several British Royal Navy and French battleships in the Dardanelles Campaign of 1915.

  • Hours: 9:00 – 17:00
  • Admission: 200 TL pp
Cimenik Castle

Kilitbahir Castle

Located across the Dardanelles from Çimenlik Castle is Kilitbahir Castle. Kilitbahir Castle, like Çimenlik Castle on the other side of the Dardanelles, was built by Mehmet the Conqueror in 1452 with an interior tower later built in the 16th century.

Kilitbahir and its fortress, also known as the Lock of the Sea, are accessible by a 10-minute ferry ride from Çanakkale. Fortress visitors can climb the ramparts for spectacular views of the strait and Çanakkale.

  • Admission: 200 TL. There is an optional audio guide.
Kilitbahir Castle

Ancient City of Assos

One of the most historical sites in this region of Turkey is the ancient city of Assos and the Assos Ancient Theater. Dating back to the 4th century BC, the Assos Ancient Theater is believed to be the earliest of its kind in Anatolia. It was built by the ancient Greeks and served as a 5,000-seat venue for various performing arts, including plays, music concerts, and religious ceremonies.

The theater’s architecture is awe-inspiring and reflects the craftsmanship of the ancient Greeks. The theater also features a scene, which is a backdrop used for theatrical performances.

The theater offers a unique glimpse into the past and provides a fascinating insight into the ancient Greek culture and way of life.

Visitors can take a short walk from the ancient city of Assos to access the Assos Ancient Theater. The site is open to the public, and guided tours are available to provide informative insights into the history and significance of the theater.

Ancient City of Assos


Çanakkale is particularly well-known for its handcrafted handicrafts, including pottery and textiles, which can be bought in local markets and bazaars across the city and surrounding area. One of the best places to find unique items is at Aynali Bazaar. These things are one-of-a-kind and authentic souvenirs that showcase the local culture and heritage.


These are just a few highlights of what Çanakkale has to offer. The city and its surroundings are steeped in history and offer a fascinating blend of ancient ruins, natural beauty, and cultural experiences.

Enjoy your travels! Please read my blogs about other exciting places around the world at Traveling Lens Photography.

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Happy Travels!

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