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Akhisar is a city in the Central Aegean region of Turkey. The city and district had a population of 174,850 in 2020. The only visitor attraction is the ruins of ancient Thyatira and adjacent museum.


"Thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication . . "
- in Revelation 2:18-29, St John of Patmos threatens that Jezebel and all who commit adultery with her in Thyatira shall be cast into a bed together.
- and if that prospect doesn't terrify them, her children will be killed, by guess what? By death!

Earlier cities on this site were called Pelopia and Semiramis. The name Thyatira (Θυάτειρα) came about in 290 BC, and perhaps meant "daughter". The town was on the border between Lydia and Mysia; from the 1st century AD it was part of the Roman Empire and notable for its dyeing trade. It was around 95 AD that St John of Patmos wrote to the "seven churches of Asia", all in what's become the Aegean region of Turkey, variously castigating or extolling their deeds.

The town is in fertile agricultural land and is on the historic route between Constantinople (Istanbul) and Smyrna (Izmir). Thyatira was wrecked several times by warring armies but by 1307 was under Ottoman control. The last upheavals were around the turn of the 19th/20th century: its Armenian community suffered a massacre in 1895, and again at the end of the war of 1919-1922, when the town was back and forth between Greece and Turkey. There were also regular earthquakes. This means that Akhisar, as it became after independence, is modern, with businesses mostly based on agriculture. Its antiquities have been built over, except for the small area known as Tepemezarı, but you might find old columns or gateways here and there in the modern streets.

Get in


By road approach either by O-5 (toll) or the old highway D-565.

By bus


Buses run frequently from Izmir, taking about two hours, some via Manisa.

Buses from Istanbul towards Izmir call at Akhisar, taking 6 hr 30 min via Bursa and Balıkesir, for a fare in 2022 of 400 TL. They run hourly or better. Operators include Metro Turizm, Pamukkale and Flixbus.

1 Otogar the inter-city bus station is 2 km north of town centre. Local buses from Izmir and Manisa also drop off and pick-up in the centre, closer to the ruins.

By train


There are three trains a day from Izmir Basmane, taking 2 hr 20 min via Manisa, and continuing to Soma and Balıkesir then either north to Bandırma (for ferries to Istanbul) or east to Kütahya, Eskişehir and Ankara.

The overnight train from Ankara is İzmir Mavi Treni (Blue Train), departing at 21:00 to reach Eskişehir at midnight, Akhisar at 08:20 and Izmir at 10:30.

Ege Ekspresi (Aegean Express) is a daytime train from Eskişehir (which has YHT trains from Istanbul, Ankara and Konya). It departs at noon to reach Akhisar at 20:20 and Izmir at 22:40.

17 Eylül Ekpresi (17th of September Express) leaves Bandırma at 16:00, so you can connect by ferry same-day from Istanbul. It reaches Akhisar at 19:50 and Izmir at 22:00.

See Turkish State Railways TCDD[dead link] for timetables, fares and online tickets.

The 2 railway station is 4 km west of town centre, take a dolmuş or taxi. The railway previously ran through the centre but was re-routed in 2018, so don't follow old signs to what is now a parking lot.

Get around

Horse cart in town centre

Take a bus or dolmuş from the otogar or railway station to the ruins near the centre.

The horse-drawn carts are farmers' and small traders' utility vans, they're not for pony rides.


  • 1 Thyateira Hill Tombs (Tepe Mezarları), Hürriyet Cd. Daily 08:00-19:00. It's called a hill but is simply a city block 100 m square with old porticos and slabs.
  • Akhisar Museum, Mustafa Abut Cd (east side of Hill Tombs), +90 236 412 2301. Tu-Su 08:00-19:00. Completed in 2012, this covers a much broader span of history and prehistory. Adult 20 TL.


  • Football: Akhisarspor were relegated in 2022 and now play soccer in TFF Second League, Turkey's third tier. Their home ground is Akhisar Arena (capacity 12,000) 2 km west of town centre, opened in 2018; previously they ground-shared at Manisa.
  • Çağlak Festival is a cultural event held over a week in May. The next is probably 22-28 May 2023, tbc.


  • Lots of small convenience stores near the ruins and town centre, usually open daily to 22:00. Şok is the commonest chain. There isn't a big supermarket.


16th Street by Tepemezarı
  • Small cafes cluster a couple of blocks east of Tepemezarı. 16 Sk starting just west of it is a pedestrian precinct with the usual pide and coffee places.
  • Akhisar Köfte is the local specialty, meatballs. Can Köfte is a prominent restaurant.




  • 1 Tütün Otel, Devlet Kara Yolu Üzeri 21, +90 236 414 5067. Budget central hotel. B&B double 600 TL.
  • 2 Seybils Otel, Şehit Teğmen Tahir Ün Cd 70, +90 236 404 0505. Mid-price hotel near ruins, mixed reviews. Free parking. B&B double 1000 TL.
  • Hotel Palm City, Ulu Camii 374 (200 m north of Otogar), +90 236 412 1220. Pleasant mid-price place with pool. B&B double 1000 TL.



Akhisar and its approach roads have 4G from all Turkish carriers. As of July 2022, 5G has not rolled out in Turkey.

Go next

  • Bergama northwest has the impressive citadel of Pergamon.
  • Sardis southeast has a Hellenistic / Roman gymnasium complex and temple.
  • Manisa southwest has several old mosques.
  • Izmir west is a lively city and transport hub.
  • Istanbul to Izmir is a long-distance itinerary, with one loop swinging through Akhisar.

Routes through Akhisar
BursaBalıkesir  N  S  ManisaIzmir
END at Bergama  W  E  SındırgıKütahya

This city travel guide to Akhisar is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.