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Bozcaada When to go

Bozcaada During the Seasons

Even though tourists visit Bozcaada mostly during summer it is also worth to be visited off-season. As Bozcaada has a rich wine and food culture and beautiful scenery, it can be visited every season of the year. Even though there are opportunities to do a one-day tour on the island, this is not enough to really get to know it. This has nothing to do with the number of places that you should visit, but everything with the fact that the more time you take to feel and resonate with Bozcaada the more you will love it.

SUMMER : You can swim in ones of Bozcaada's coves from May until October. However, visitors who come for a beach holiday prefer especially July and August. Bozcaada is an ideal holiday location for people who want a refreshing holiday. Its winds keep you at a comfortable warmth and blow away the moisture in the air. As the island is busiest during school and national holidays, these periods are the most expensive for accommodation.

AUTUMN: The island' most peaceful season is autumn. With the summer's heat behind you, Bozcaada's cold sea has just been warmed up. This period you can choose freely amongst quiet coves, hotels, and restaurants. No need for a hurry or reservations. It is in autumn that the wine grapes are being picked and driven with old tractors to the wine factories. This season is ideal for long walks and bike rides. You can stop wherever you want and pick some of the leftover grapes, or ripe blackberries and figs.

WINTER: Even during winter the island is predominantly sunny. And when it rains the clouds disappear in no time making place for the sun. And so even during winter the weather does not get really rough. Because of the Northern wind called 'Poyraz' the windchill is lower than the real temperature. Sporadically it snows, but this is really the exception. Between December and March social life is almost non-existent. Hotels with heating, some restaurants and bars are open. Establishments outside of the city center are in general closed for service.

SPRING: In spring the island becomes beautifully green. Flowers bloom and colour the fields and vineyards. Together with the softening of the weather locals start having picnics and living outdoors again. Most hotels and restaurants start with their preparations for the holiday season's opening on the 23rd of April. Buildings, chairs, and tables are being painted, and new flowers are being planted in the gardens. Establishments not being able to open at this date open on the 19th of May latest. 


Visitors who want to spend their holidays on Bozcaada during its 'special days' should look at the dates below and make reservations in advance. 

International Half Maraton- 2nd week of May

10K and 20K runs, held in the 2nd week of May each year, are included in the competition schedule of Turkish Athletic Federation and sponsored by New Balance since 2 years. Amateur athletes from different parts of the World, who follow this schedule and attend the marathon, can also have a nice holiday with their family.

Aya Paraskevi Day -26th July

The 26 of July are the days when the Greeks get together to celebrate the Holy Paraskevi. It is also known as the Ayazma Fair. You must visit this place with its double-spouted historical fountain, its eight gigantic plane trees and the small chapel. Many Greeks from abroad come to the island for this festival every year. Some are old residents of the island while others are young Greeks who are curious about their origins. Sirtaki is danced to the music of groups coming from Greece. Priests come from Istanbul or Gökçeada.

All through the day, a local restaurant owner offers a buffet and drinks in honour of the occasion. The joyful crowd eats at the wooden tables placed in the centre of the square, accompanied by the island wine and they dance to the traditional music. The priest rings the bell when it time for people to attend the service. The Turks who have lived side by side with the Greeks for many years don’t abandon them on this special day and attend the ceremony with equal enthusiasm. You must stop by to witness how these two cultures fuse with each other as they breathe the air of this joyous atmosphere…

Bozcaada The Day of the Poet and Iliad Readings- first weekend of August
5 August 2017

This event, which has been taking place on the first weekend of each August , was initiated by the personal endeavours of the famous Turkish journalist Haluk Sahin. It has already become a traditional festival.

Each year a different poet is invited for this gathering. One of the well-known Turkish poet will lead those who love poetry. Not only will people get a chance to listen to poet’s poetry read by himself but they will also have the chance to hear Homer’s world famous epic Iliad, the story of which passes in Troy, read in various languages.

It is not a coincidence that Bozcaada is chosen for this activity. It is situated right opposite the ancient Troy, on Hisarlik Hill. Bozcaada was a shelter for the Acheans from the Trojans all through the Trojan war. Even when the famous Trojan horse trick was being carried out the Achaean fleet waited for the sign from the opposite bank to arrive in a harbour behind on the rear part of the island. The Iliad readings start with dawn in Troy. The crowd gets together in harmony with the early morning calm waiting for the reading to continue from where it stopped the year before. 

Bozcaada Vintage Festival  8-10 September 2017

'Bagbozumu' (vintage) is the name given to grape harvest. August and September are the months of the grape harvest. The grape harvest festival, prepared by the Bozcaada Municipality each year on the first weekend of September has become a traditional celebration on the island.

The festival, which continues for 2 days, starts with a symbolical grape harvest in the vineyards of the island’s wine makers. People get on tractors together with the vineyard labourers to go to the vineyards. There, people learn the details of grape harvesting and collect the grapes together. The harvested grapes are put in panniers carried to the ceremony area on donkey back and by horse and carriage for the sake of the old days as well as by tractors. After the opening ceremony, grapes are distributed to the public.

Throughout the festivals wine makers offer their wines to be tasted at the stands they have opened for this occasion. Many concerts are given at the castle. What’s more, two contests are prepared as part of the festival. One of them is for choosing the grape beauty among the young girls of the island, and the other one is for choosing the tastiest sweet white grape (cavus) of the island.

Bozcaada International Taste Festival
22-24 September 2017

The Festival which is organized by BOZTID (Bozcaada Tourism Managers Association) is being held in the second weekend of September every year. The organization starts with delicious Island and international food tasting in the Island square, continues with a concert given in the castle and ends on Sunday afternoon, when guests are living. It is possible to taste the special Island food cooked by the chefs and also to learn the ingredients and buy them in the festival.

Bozcaada International Festival of Ecological Documentary
11-15 October 2017

This festival is organized in order to create a new reason to produce and introduce films and any other works of art that concentrate on the world’s problems and wealth, pioneer the creation of a free platform and reward these works.