Gökçeada Travel Guide

Discover the hidden island gem of Turkey with our Gökçeada travel guide. From breathtaking natural beauty to historic landmarks and local culture, find out everything you need to know before you go.

Introduction to Gökçeada

Gökçeada, also known as Imbros, is the largest island of Turkey in the Aegean Sea. This beautiful and remote destination is perfect for those who seek to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city life. Located off the coast of Turkey and Greece, with azure waters and natural beauty, visitors are mesmerized by the island’s charm.

Gökçeada is a year-round destination, with the summer being the most popular time to visit. Its Mediterranean climate makes it perfect for outdoor activities, and it is a great place to relax and unwind. The island is also famous for its natural beauty, pristine beaches, historic landmarks, and delicious food.

In this Gökçeada travel guide, we will take you on a journey and explore the island’s hidden gems, must-visit places, and the best things to do in Gökçeada.

List of Places to Visit in Gökçeada

Culturally Important Attractions: Museums and Historical Places

  • Imroz Maritime Museum: This museum is dedicated to Gökçeada’s maritime history and displays artifacts, photographs, and models of boats that played a significant role in the island’s history.

  • Tuz Gölü (Salt Lake): Visit Tuz Gölü to witness the island’s rich flora and fauna. The salt lake houses various bird and plant species, making it a hot spot for nature lovers.

  • Panagia Tis Skopianiis: This ancient Greek Orthodox church is one of the oldest and most beautiful places of worship in Gökçeada. It is said to have been built in the 5th century AD and has undergone many reconstructions over the centuries.

Natural Attractions of Gökçeada: Outdoor Adventures and Scenic Views

  • Aydıncık Beach: Located on the north side of Gökçeada, Aydıncık Beach is known for its crystal-clear waters and secludedness. It is perfect for those who seek tranquil relaxation.

  • Kuzu Limanı Bay: This picturesque bay is a great place to relax and sunbathe. Its blue-green water is perfect for a swim, and the relaxing atmosphere will give you a sense of peace.

  • Cape Poseidon: Cape Poseidon is the perfect place to witness one of the most beautiful sunsets in Turkey. The stunning landscape and views can be seen after an easy hike.

Hiking/Biking Routes of Gökçeada

Gökçeada is a nature-lover’s paradise. Its pristine beaches, rugged mountains and fertile, green landscape offer diverse trekking routes. Grab your hiking shoes and explore the eastern, western, and southern edges of the island. Cycling is another great way to explore the island.

  • Kaleköy Hiking Trail: This is the most popular trail in the island, and it offers stunning views of the sea and the surrounding countryside.

  • Kefalos Beach to Lapta Trek: Trek from Kefalos Beach to Lapta on the island’s north coast, starting from a secluded bay and ending at Cape Yali.

  • EcoTrail: This trail is ideal for nature lovers who want to explore the island’s flora and fauna. The total distance of the EcoTrail is 70 km, which takes around 4-5 days to complete.

Best Things to Do in Gökçeada: Activities and Tours

  • Ilgarini Cave: Go underground and explore the magnificent Ilgarini Cave, located on the island’s eastern coast.

  • Kite Surfing and Windsurfing: With strong winds and calm waters, Gökçeada is perfect for kite surfing and windsurfing.

  • Scuba Diving: Gökçeada is a popular destination for divers, and the underwater world of the island offers unique experiences.

Week-Long Itinerary for Gökçeada

Day Activity
1 Explore the island’s northern coast - Aydincik Beach, Tuz Gölü, and Kaleköy Hiking Trail
2 Visit the ancient Greek Orthodox Church, Panagia Tis Skopianiis, and the southern coast of the island - Bedirli and Zeytinli beaches
3 Take a guided tour of EcoTrail and explore the flora and fauna of the island
4 Visit the Ilgarini Cave and go on a windsurfing adventure in Cape Poseidon
5 Go scuba diving in the crystal-clear waters and explore the island’s underwater world
6 Visit the island’s east coast - Yıldız Koyu and trek from Kefalos Beach to Lapta
7 Relax and unwind at Kuzu Limanı Bay

Food and Drink Scene of Gökçeada

Must-Try Dishes

The island’s local cuisine is famous for its fresh seafood dishes and Turkish mezzes. Due to its geographical location, the Island’s local cuisine infuses Turkish and Greek influences. Here are some must-try dishes:

  • Gökçeada Fish Stew: A hearty and flavorsome stew made with locally caught fish.

  • Palamut Pilaki: A delicious pilaki made with bonito and beans.

  • Çökertme Kebabı: Succulent lamb patties seasoned with garlic, parsley, and cumin and cooked with potatoes.

Local Beverages

  • Stomata Wine: A white wine produced from centuries-old grapevines.

  • Ouzo: A traditional Greek drink distilled from aniseed.

  • Raki: A traditional Turkish drink distilled from aniseed and grapes.

Where to Stay in Gökçeada: Hotels, Hostels, and Guesthouses

Gökçeada offers various accommodation options such as hotels, hostels, and guesthouses. Here are some of our top picks:

  • Ataol Beach Bungalows: Located on the island’s west coast, Ataol Beach Bungalows offer comfortable accommodation with stunning views of the sea.

  • Gökçeada Pansiyon: This guesthouse is located in the heart of the island’s main town, and it is a great option for budget travelers.

  • Ariora Butik Otel: For those who seek a luxurious stay, the Ariora Butik Otel is a perfect choice. The hotel is located in the island’s center, and it offers stunning sea views.

What to Buy in Gökçeada: Souvenirs and Local Products to Bring Home

Gökçeada is renowned for its handmade souvenirs and local products. The island’s souvenirs are perfect for bringing home as a reminder of your time on the island. Here are some of the must-buy souvenirs:

  • Handmade Jewelry: The island’s local crafters make beautiful jewelry from metals, beads, and stones.

  • Olive Oil: Gökçeada is known for its olive oil, and it is one of the best souvenirs to bring back home.

  • Handmade Pottery: The island’s local pottery makers create unique and beautiful pieces that are great for gifts or home decoration.

Local Culture and Customs of Gökçeada

Gökçeada has a rich cultural heritage, and its history is influenced by the Greeks, Turks, and numerous civilizations. The lifestyle of the island’s inhabitants is a combination of the cultures, and they are proud of their culture and customs. Here are some of the island’s customs and traditions:

  • Göçmen Mutfakları Festivali: It is an annual festival that celebrates the island’s diversity of culinary traditions.

  • Oylat Dance: A traditional dance of the island, performed during special events such as weddings and festivals.

Best Time to Visit Gökçeada

Gökçeada’s Mediterranean climate makes it a year-round destination. However, the best time to visit the island is between May and October when the weather is warm and suitable for outdoor activities. The summer months are the busiest, and the island’s population increases dramatically.

Do’s and Don’ts of Gökçeada


  • Respect the island’s customs and traditions.

  • Explore the island’s natural beauty.

  • Try the local food and wine.


  • Litter or damage the natural or cultural heritage of the island.

  • Disrespect the dress code of religious buildings.

  • Use plastic bags or single-use plastics.

Safety and Health

Safety in Gökçeada

Gökçeada is a relatively safe destination, and visitors do not face any significant safety risks. However, tourists should be cautious while swimming in the sea, and follow the safety warnings and instructions of the lifeguards at the beaches.

Health in Gökçeada

The island has one hospital and several pharmacies. Visitors should bring a basic first aid kit and any necessary medication with them. The tap water is safe to drink.

Getting to Gökçeada: Transportation Options and Logistics

Airports Near Gökçeada

The nearest major airport to Gökçeada is Istanbul International airport. From Istanbul, visitors can travel to the island via bus or ferry. The distance from Istanbul to the island is approximately 660 km, and the journey takes around 7-8 hours.

Bus Stations Near Gökçeada

Ferries operate from the ports of Kabatepe and Geyikli near Çanakkale, and from Çanakkale to Istanbul. From Istanbul, visitors can take a bus to Çanakkale and then take a ferry.

Other Options

Visitors can travel to Gökçeada from Greece via a ferry. The ferries operate from the port of Limnos.

How to Get Around in Gökçeada

The best way to explore the island is by renting a car or a motorbike. Bicycles are also available for rent, and it is an excellent option for those who like to explore the island at their leisure. Taxis and local buses are also available.

Where to Go Next from Gökçeada: Nearby Destinations and Excursions

  • Bozcaada: Located off the coast of Çanakkale, Bozcaada is a small island that is home to pristine beaches, local wine vineyards, and charming towns.

  • Assos: Assos is a picturesque town located on the Aegean coast of Turkey. It is famous for its ancient theater and stunning vistas.


Gökçeada is a hidden island gem of Turkey that offers stunning natural beauty, rich culture, and delicious food. Visiting this island is a unique experience, and it’s perfect for those who seek to unwind and relax in a tranquil setting. With this Gökçeada travel guide, you are ready to explore the hidden gem of Turkey.