Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Museums in Izmir, Turkey drawing thousands of tourists

With the rising popularity of cruise line tourism, more people are visiting the archeological, ethnographical, historical arts and Atatürk museums in İzmir.

The İzmir Archeology Museum was established on a 500-square-meter area in Bahribaba Park in 1984. In this four-floor museum, the exhibition is organized in sections. Ceramic and precious artifacts are on the upper floor, stone statues, busts and portraits are on the middle floor, and while the ground floor is reserved for the administration, the basement is used as a storage room. There are 58,788 items on display in the museum and in its garden.

The Ethnography Museum is also located in Bahribaba Park. The museum building was constructed in the 19th century in neoclassical style on a sloped terrace. The building was used as the St. Roch Hospital in 1983, and was converted into a care-house for poor Christian families by the French in 1845.

The Selçuk Museum is another notable museum in İzmir. Museum officials point out that many tourists, especially those who come to the region on cruise line tours, have been visiting the Ephesus Museum, St. John’s Basilica and the ancient city of Ephesus in greater numbers since April 2007.