Şirince is one of the very few genuinely beautiful historic villages left in the Western seaboard of Turkey. Almost all houses date from the 19th century or earlier. The hills are covered with olive groves and vineyards, and fringed by pine forest. The inhabitants make wine and olive oil. They produce some of the best peaches in the land.
Tourism has unfortunately arrived. It has turned Main Street into souvenir-alley. Nisanyan House is high enough on the hill to stay almost unaffected. We are still woken up in the morning by the cock crow and donkey bray. The nights remain magically silent.
There is a wiggly tail under the Ş, which changes it into a Sh. The name is pronounced she-RIN-jay. It means Prettytown. The town had a different name until the 1930's, when a governor of Izmir Province got into his mind to prettify it.
Facts and Figures
The village has 650 people, 35 donkeys and a dwindling number of goats. The average altitude is 350 metres (1000 feet) from sea level. Nisanyan Hotel is at 402 metres. That means reasonably cool nights in hottest summer. And high heating bills in winter.
There are about 15 restaurants, several cafes, a phenomenal number ofsouvenir and junk stalls, three groceries, two barber shops, a health clinic, and a Mathematics Institute. For everything else one must go toSelçuk, the district town 8 kms down the hill. The public minibus to Selçuk runs every half hour during daylight.
None, really. The village itself is very nice and it is surrounded by glorious countryside. You can just walk around for hours, or days. We once marked out a hiking path with red dots, but I think these are mostly faded now.