A world renowned holiday and entertainment peninsula, Bodrum is a paradise for its climate, sea, natural beauty, magnificent coves and history, as well as for its modern nightlife where the show goes on until sunrise. Its many resorts and hotels cater for every need of their visitors. Since the dawn of the time, Bodrum, known in antiquity as Halircarnasus, has amazed human beings, and carried imprint of many cultures and civilizations, including the Carian, Leleges’, Persian, Dorian, Helen, Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman. Some Bodrum Sights and Attractions are the most famous in Turkey.
Bodrum Sights and Attractions:
The seaside villages, bays and coves of Bodrum, Gümbet, Bitez, Ortakent, Bağla, Aspat, Karaincir, Akyarlar, Turgutreis, Gümüşlük, Yalıkavak, Gündoğan, Göltürkbükü, Torba, Güllük, are world-famous, and each has its own charm and peculiarities.
Bodrum Castle, built by The Knights of St. John, which has become a symbol of the peninsula. At present it hosts the Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archaeology which was awarded the ‘Certificate of Special Commendation’ in the ‘European Museum of the Year Award’ competition in 1995. For the history enthusiast, another must see place in Bodrum is the remains of the Mausoleum.
Blue Voyage: The Blue Voyage, also known as the Blue Cruise (“Mavi Yolculuk” in Turkish) is a term used for the recreational boating tours departing from Bodrum, Marmaris, Fethiye, Gökova, Fethiye and Antalya. These trips are a unique tranquil holidays to enjoy the beautiful bays and coves which can only be reached by sea, to swim in unpolluted waters in a myriad of shades of blue, to visit magnificent antique sites such as Knidos.
Where to Go
Named after the domed water-cisterns that speckle the countryside near-by, Gümbet is the closest beach to Bodrum – just 10 minutes away by car – and is very popular with British holidaymakers, many of whom choose to stay here close to the beach and venture into Bodrum at night. As it has grown in popularity, however, Gümbet has developed in its own right and now offers a wide choice of lively bars and restaurants, popular with a young crowd. Its long sandy beach is lined with hotels and pensions which attract many young people and water-sports enthusiasts with its large windsurfing school and diving courses.
Reached by a winding road from Gürece, Gümüşlük is very popular for its secluded setting. Ever since being designated as an archaelogical site, no major buildings have been allowed to alter the landscape, making it a very pleasant place to stay with its unspoilt scenery, long sand and gravel beach and a handful of excellent fish restaurants perched right on the sea-front. The site of the ancient Myndos, Gümüşlük is scattered with remnants of its historical past: as you look out towards the harbour you will spot the fortification wall, an ancient tower and submerged walls. Also, if you walk towards the south end of the beach, you will also be able to swim very close to some of the ruins, making it the perfect spot for snorkeling. Gümüşlük is accessible by dolmuş from Bodrum or from Turgutreis.
A sophisticated new marina adorns the waterfront at Turgutreis, complete with exclusive cafes, restaurants and boutiques, as well as a host of new bars and discos. Thought not very sandy, its beach is very popular with families because the sea is shallow for quite a way out, making it safer for young children. For a more peaceful alternative to the main beach, there is also a long and sandy beach near the lighthouse on the way towards Akyarlar. There is also good access to Bodrum from Turgutreis, with a regular dolmuş service that stops at the main square in Turgutreis.
Formerly the area’s main sponge-fishing port, the village of Yalıkavak maintains a relaxing atmosphere for quaint seaside eating. Its position in the north-western corner of the peninsula, 18 km from Bodrum means it is one of the least developed spots in the area with fewer hotels and self-catering apartments, making it an enjoyable stay away from the crowds. As you reach the bay, you will notice the ruins of three old windmills on the hills – the hills around the village are also perfect for picnics and walks, particularly in the spring when they are covered with a colourful carpet of wild flowers bursting newly into bloom.
Türkbükü is one of the Bodrum’s best-kept secrets with its array of exclusive hotels, excellent sea-front restaurant s situated on wooden piers and trendy bars that burst into life after sunset. By day, its beach-front cafes and hotels are havens for the jet-set, with fantastic views of the beautiful bay and wooden platforms dotted with sophisticated sun-loungers from which to swim.
Bitez lies on a bay, a few kilometers west from Bodrum, attracting an older, more up-market crowd. The gently-sloping coarses and beach has wooden piers for swimming and is lined whitewashed hotels and resort villas, whilst also host to a popular windsurfing and sailing school – Its sheltered cove and swallow water are perfect for beginners. Backed by lush tangerine orchards, Bitez is perfect for those who want to escape the crowds, whilst also having good access to Bodrum with direct dolmuşes to and from the city.
You can reach Ortakent from the main highway west of Bodrum and it is very popular with Turkish families. Its two-kilometer long beach is considered by many to be one of the best on the peninsula and is dotted with several restaurants, motels and some unique tower-houses.