Canakkale is a seaside city and seaport in Turkey, in Çanakkale Province, on the southern (Asian) coast of the Dardanelles at their narrowest point


Like Istanbul part of the city is on European and the rest on Asian ground. This area has been an important harbor since antiquity since it is a major crossing point. According to some excavations and research, the earliest settlements in the region were established at Kumtepe. It is supposed that Kumkale was established in 4000 BC and Troy between 3500–3000 BC.

The real history of Çanakkale started with Troy. Later the Aeolian Greeks settled on that important land in the 8th century BC and established many trade colonies in the region called Aeolis. The region came under the control of the Lydians in the 7th century BC and under the control of the Persians in the 6th century BC. Aeolis went under the control of the Ancient Macedonian army as Alexander the Great defeated the Persians by the Granicus River of the region in the Battle of the Granicus on his way to Asia. The region came under the reign of the Kingdom of Pergamon in the 2nd century BC.

In more recent history an important battle of WWI took place in 1915, known as The Gallipoli Campaign or the Dardanelles Campaign, in which the British Empire and France attempted to capture the Ottoman capital of İstanbul and secure a sea route to Russia. Today there are English, French and Australian memorials there. Today it is a busing city with a renowned university and an ideal location to explore the important archeological and WWI sites.

Getting There

canakkale canakkale

There are buses from Istanbul at any time, day or night and the journey lasts about five and a half to six hours. The busy Çanakkale bus station also has several daily connections with most major Turkish destinations, such as Edirne and Izmir. By car Çanakkale is linked to north, east, and south by well-paved highways.

Sea transportation is vital for the city since it is located on both sides of Asian and European continents, just like Istanbul and there is no bridge crossing the Straits of Dardanelles yet. You will have to take one of the ferry crossings when arriving from the north. Çanakkale is 320 km from Istanbul, 325 km from Izmir, and 653 km from Ankara.

One option to cross the straits is the 24-hr Eceabat–Çanakkale ferry line, with hourly intervals during most of the day and night (with an extra half hourly departures from Canakkale side at 7:30am), is likely to be the most convenient choice to get to the city from the European mainland. Passengers from Istanbul must be aware that, under bad weather conditions, the sea-traffic in the strait is limited or cancelled, and crossing the strait may become unavailable. By plane you can get a local flight to Canakkale airport which is 3km outside the city.

Getting around Most of the places in Çanakkale are in walking distance. There are also scheduled minibuses to Troy and ferries to Bozcaada daily.

Where to Stay in Canakkale You will find a variety of hotels in the city to suit every budget. In Canakkale you will find renovated historic hotels as well as modern luxurious facilities.



Çanakkale is a convenient base to explore many nearby sights from. The archaeological site of Troy (Truva or Troya in Turkish) is about 30 km away, where you will find ruins of the legendary city with the re-constructed wooden Trojan horse. Gokceada (Imbros) and Bozcaada (Tenedos) are two of the biggest islands of Turkey.

Gallipoli is on the opposite banks of Dardanelles Strait. Kilitbahir is another village just opposite the city across Dardanelles on the Gallipoli Peninsula and it is known for its extremely well preserved castle (that one which is the most obvious landmark seen from the city when illuminated at night). The village has very frequent ferry services (by private, smaller-sized boats) from Çanakkale and it is a convenient point for visits onward to the southern, and decidedly less visited WWI monuments of Gallipoli, such as Cape Helles. Abydos is an ancient city where the story of Hero and Leander takes place. Assos (also known as Behramkale; about 100 km to south) is a historically-important, pleasant seaside village.

Finally you can visit the Archaeological Museum (Arkeoloji Müzesi) to see artifacts excavated from archaeological sites in the countryside surrounding Çanakkale, mostly amphorae and pottery.