A voyage to remember: The train that has been chugging along for 153 years

Published 04.12.2019 11:36
Updated 20.12.2019 02:07
The train ride from Ayd?n to ?zmir takes two hours in total. AA Photo
The train ride from Ayd?n to ?zmir takes two hours in total. (AA Photo)

In 1856, the Ottoman government decided to build a railway to transport commodities produced in the western province of Aydın to the port city of İzmir. The laying down of some 130 kilometers of tracks was completed in 1866 – and the train has been chugging along ever since.

For the last 153 years, the train shuffling between Aydın and İzmir has offered voyagers a unique glimpse of Turkey's Aegean region. The train has carried around 10,000 people daily.

The train leaves from Aydın, stopping at 15 locations before arriving at the port city after a two-hour journey which allows passengers to remark on the stunning beauty of the Aegean region.

Yaşar Özyaman, a regular commuter on the Aydın-İzmir line, claims the rail is the most exhilarating way to travel: "Over the course my journeys, I get to enjoy how the seasons change and witness the joys of Mother Nature. I have been riding this train for years and it never gets dull."

“It is a comfortable and cheap way to travel,” said Abdullah Binici, who works in Aydın but goes to İzmir several times a week for his master’s studies. “I can study and read my favorite books on the train. Sometimes I even meet new people. This two-hour train ride can change a man’s life.”

İnci Bozkurt, on the other hand, has an affection for the Aydın-İzmir line out of a sense of pure nostalgia. “I can drive to İzmir, sure, but I enjoy riding the train. It is very nostalgic. I might arrive at my destination a little bit later, but the joy I get from this journey is incomparable. This train route will always be my favorite," he said.

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