Bodrum, Dalyan, Fethiye, Kas
Bodrum resort town on Turkey's Mediterranean coast.
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Bodrum resort town is a large, lively, well developed holiday port on the Mediterranean coast with varied tourism attractions.
Things to do in Bodrum, Turkey:
- Upmarket 'Blue Voyage' or Blue Cruises' are sailing holidays on traditional two-masted gulet yachts around the translucent Aegean Sea, or is it the Mediterranean?! Boats of all sorts are based in Bodrum's west side port. For the less serious sailors short boat tours or beach ferries also leave from the port. Dive boats too are based there and scuba fans will not be disappointed.
- Beach life focuses on the town's east side modest beach (photo below) along with attendant services, cafés, bars, restaurants and some very large and frenzied clubs. If the limited sand is overcrowded or not up to standard then hop a taxi or ferry to one of the better beaches along the coast such as nearby Gumbet or head further to Bitez, where the sand is fine, the water is shallow and prices are low.
- Windsurfing is excellent at nearby nouveau-hippy Vass, though it can get overcrowded in season.
- Hire wheels and drive along the gorgeous coastline, day-tripping to interesting spots such as Dalyan's Lycian tombs and hot mud baths or Ephesus' crowded antiquities.
- Bodrum Castle is worth a couple of hours. The views around the bay and the town are spectacular and there's plenty to see in the castle and its gardens. The Underwater Archaeology Museum is part of the castle and also worthwhile.
- attend events in the Castle of St Peter or Bodrum Amphitheatre, such as the Ballet Festival in August, or varied rock music concerts.
Bodrum castle and port, a popular base for gulet cruises and yachting holidays.
Bodrum weather tends towards mild winters - not too wet, and extremely hot, dry summers, with temperatures going over 40C in mid summer.
Bodrum Hotels or house rentals: If you're looking for a young-ish, beach and bars, wild night zone then stay on Bodrum's east side; if you're more mature or sophisticated and want quiet class, head west. There's plenty of accommodation possibilities from B 'n' Bs, guest houses and rentals to fine resort hotels.
Get there by plane to nearby Bodrum-Milas airport, or Izmir (3 hours drive). By bus from Istanbul to Bodrum will take 13 hours, from Ankara 10 hours.
Bitez Beach. email from biggels999, England: We took a 20 lira taxi ride there from the port at Bodrum where our ship was docked.
Superb beach with sun beds, parasols and so on. Mostly Turkish tourists around and the water was full of fish, always a good sign. Water temperature was perfect for swimming or just fooling about. We had an amzing day with lunch and drinks which cost very little. It was a great trip and we hope to repeat it.
Lycian tombs from 400BC above Dalyan River.
Dalyan. One of riverside Dalyan's claims to fame was a battle to protect the local breeding ground of loggerhead sea turtles on nearby Iztuzu beach, otherwise known as Turtle Beach.
This is now a protected area but still pleasant and usable outside egg-laying season. Dalyan is a small, quiet, not wildly interesting town apart from the beach, mud baths, and walks or boat trips to see the Lycian tombs and ancient Kaunos (photo above).
Dalyan mud baths.
Dalyan has various therapeutic hot springs and mud baths which are believed to cure many skin and organ problems as well as cleanse and beautify skin.
Once you have covered yourself in the mud, you wait for few minutes for it to dry then clean yourself in the sulphur pool. There are questions about scientific support for health benefits of the mud, but it's certainly good for a laugh.
The Sultaniye Thermal Bath 4 km from Dalyan, in use since Hellenistic times has mineral waters up to a temperature of 40 degrees C.
Ancient city of Kaunos, Dalyan. email from Batman69, UK: Kaunos is well worth a visit if you are visiting Dalyan.
It dates from about 3000 BC.
Overlooking the sea and the delta, the main attractions of Caunos are the Acropolis, the city walls, a theatre, several temples, an agora, baths and many more relics.
Even travellers who have no interest in ancient sites enjoy the spectacular and panoramic views.
On our walk followed the river adjacent to the main street for about a mile. We then hired a boat-ferry and were rowed across the river, paying a small fee for a return trip at any time.
It's a steady uphill hike of about a mile to Caunos, past the magnificent Lycian rock tombs of Kaunos kings. Don't forget the mosquito repellant.
At the site there is a small entrance fee, well worth it for the two hours we spent there.
The total distance kiked that day was around 8 miles and took about four hours.
Calis Beach, Fethiye - out of season!
Fethiye is another small, quiet town with touristic ambition but offering little but low prices and convenient location. Calis is the local beach, a pebble strand 4 kms out of town.
Saklikent Gorge, Fethiye. email from BomoJeff, Bournemouth, UK: The wonderful Saklikent Gorge is 45 mins by car from Fethiye and don't forget your camera, but preferably a waterproof one!
It is possible to rent plastic shoes and tourists will be helped across the turbulent river by local people for a tip, which is well worth itas it's not easy.
There are places where the river can reach your chest and you can't see where you are going. The main target is a pretty waterfall and possibly a second if you feel like it.
The café at the gorge serves simple food but in a gorgeous location on platforms on the river bank.
Olu Deniz Beach. email from petiteanglaiseparis, France: Oludeniz used to be unspoilt and some travellers are disappointed by how touristy it is now.
We stayed in Fethiye and went to Oludeniz on two day trips, one to spend on the beach, the other to take a boat trip to some of the nearby attractions.
The shingle beach and lagoon area is thick with parasols and sun beds, scattered with small wood snack bars, and loads of facilities like showers and toilets so perfect for those travelling with children. Watersports kit is available for hire including snorkeling stuff, kayaks and pedalo boats.
You have to pay a nominal fee when you enter the nature reserve. We had a really good time in the lovely, uncrowded nature reserve.
Oludeniz beach and lagoon are surrounded by mountains and pine forests and the sea is a fantastic shade of turquoise.
The coast road from Kalkan (a yacht marina) to Kas (below) on the 'Turkish Riviera' (aka 'Turquoise Coast'), with a couple of small but nice beaches along this road.
Kaputas beach, between Kalkan and Kas.
Kas, a tiny old fishing port and relatively tranquil tourist town. Next, Cappadocia Pictures, Turkey.
Kas, which is about 30 minutes spectacular drive from Kalkan, doesn't have any beaches - which is one reason why it's quite unspoilt - but there are a couple of beaches within a few kilometres, accessible by bus or rental vehicle.
Kaputas Beach is especially favoured, 6 kms from Kalkan on the road to Kas, but it has NO facilities at all, neither parasols, sun beds, food nor drink. Whereas Big Pebble Beach, less than 2 kms east of Kas offers free sun beds and beach bars.
There is a small water park in Kas aimed at children with various kiddie facilities including small water slides, a children's play area and sun beds on a pebble beach, an excellent place for a family day out.
Sunken City of Kekova, near Kas. Kekova is the region around a ancient sunken city a 90 minute boat ride from Kas, with plenty of amazing scenery on the way. Choose to share a boat with a lot of strangers or rent your own for not much more if you're a sizeable family. Set out in mid-morning and return at sunset and you'll miss the crowds.
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