Places of interest
Yildirim Mosque, built by Beyazit I in the mid 14th century, is the city's oldest mosque.
The Zagnos Pasa Mosque, built in 1461 by and named for the Grand Vizier of Mehmet the Conqueror, Zagnos Pasa, was once part of a great complex. Today only the mosque and bath remain.
The Saat Kulesi (Clock Tower) built in 1827 by Mehmet pasa is a smaller version of the Genoese Galata Tower.
The Karesi Bey Mauseleum of 1336 contains the cenotaphs of Karesi Bey and his five sons. Also take in artifacts from the area displayed in the newly completed Balikesir Museum (Kuve-i Milliye).
Open days to visit: Everyday except Monday
Degirmen Bogazi, the beautiful area ten kilometers from Balikesir towards Bursa, lies between two hills. On weekends and holidays families flock to this scenic spot and its restaurants.
At Karakol village photographers can capture on film three picturesque windmills.
Ancient Penderamus, now called Bandirma, is today an important commercial and industrial harbor second only to Istanbul in the Sea of marmara. You can spend a pleasant afternoon in the town's restaurants and cafes.
Belkis (Kyzikos) lies ten kilometers west of Bandirma. In this ancient city on the isthmus of the Kapidag Peninsula, the Temple of Hadrian, a theater and aqueducts still captivate visitors. The Kuscenneti National Park near Lake Manyas is an ornithological site where 239 different species of birds flourish. Every year, over three million birds fly through this preserve. April and May are the best months to enjoy the wildlife Thirteen kilometers southeast of Bandirma in Karacabey, horse farms breed magnificent speciments of this beloved animal.
Once known as ancient Erteka, Erdek is just 14km nortwest of bandirma. One of the oldest and most famous resort areas on the Sea of Marmara, it offers pristine beaches and every type of accomodation.
Marmara Island, formerly known as Prokonessos, rose to prominence in the Roman period and retained its importance in the Byzantine and Ottoman periods thanks to the marble quarries, which supplied the stone for extravagant imperial building programs.
Near Saraylar village Marble Beach derives its name from the natural marble that lies just off the water's edge. In town, an open-air museum displays artifacts which date back to Roman and Byzantine times. At the marble quarry you can witness every step of the quarrying process.
Turkeli (Avsa) is another holiday island that boasts of spectacular beaches and clear water as well as famous vineyards and wine cellars. In the Manastir district stands the Byzantine Meryem Ana Monastery.
Fifty-five kilometers southwest of Bandirma is Gonen, Turkey's most important thermal resort. That the springs were used even in Roman times is testified to by a fifth-century mosaic from what was originally a Roman bath. The waters come from 500 meters below the ground, emerge at approximately 82oC. Another 30 km. to the northwest, Denizkent is a nice vacation spot with lovely beaches.
Sindirgi lies at the base of the Alacam Mountains amid beautiful forests and meadows in a region known for the weaving of superb Turkish carpets. The rugs of Yagcibedir are among the most prized in the country and grow more lovely with age. Arround the Gulf of Edremit, also in Balikesir province, are some of the most beautiful coastlines in the country where clear waters meet sandy beaches which are encircled by the silvery green olive groves. Ayvalik, Burhaniye, Oren, Edremit, Akcay and Altinoluk are all holiday towns which attract vacatiners interested in a relaxing holiday with beautiful scenery and a wealth of historical and archeological sites.