Nazilli Adventure Tours

Nazilli is the second largest town in Aydın Province in the Aegean region of western Turkey, 47 km (29 mi) east of the city of Aydın, on the road to Denizli.  Nazilli is a Turkish name that has somehow evolved from the former (also Turkish) name of Pazarköy (market place). According to legend, the son of Aydın’s governor in the Ottoman period, fell in love with a young woman from Pazarköy but was rejected by the girl’s father. The young man later named the town Nazli Ili (Nazli’s Home) after his loved one. The 17th century traveller Evliya Çelebi held that the town was named for the capriciousness (“naz”) of the local women in this wealthy town. Or it could have been the name of a family of Oghuz Turks that settled here.   These people practiced weaving and thus planted cotton in the area for this purpose. The Oghuz Turks were succeeded by the Anatolian beyliks of Menteşe (in 1280) and then Aydınoğlu.


In 1390 Bayezid I brought the area into the Ottoman Empire. At this time, the town comprised two villages, Cuma Yeri (Friday Square) and Pazarköy (Weekday Market). The town was only later referred to as Nazliköy. In 1402 Tamerlane defeated Bayezid at the Battle of Ankara and took control of the Aegean region, giving the Nazilli area back to the Aydınoğlu family. it was quickly recovered for the Ottomans by Sultan Murat II. During the Turkish War of Independence Nazilli was occupied by Greek forces and was liberated on September 5, 1922.

Nazilli stands on the Menderes River, the biggest river in the Aegean region, and the much of the district is in the Menderes valley, full of citrus trees, olives and figs as well as cotton, wheat, and other crops. This is attractive countryside of lazy charm with a hot climate, the scent of oranges, and an impressive back-drop of mountains.

Nazilli today is a large and wealthy town with a population of 109,800 (according to the 2007 census). The town has a number of hospitals, high schools (including a private school following an English curriculum), a police college, and some faculty buildings of Adnan Menderes University, including a school of business and economics. The old city center is tidy and attractive with streets decorated with bergamot trees and people buzzing around on mopeds.

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Things to See & Do Near Nazilli

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