Homer's description of Bodrum
as "The land of eternal blue" and the words of another resident
of Bodrum, Cevat Sakir, who said "The heavenly bliss of
life in Bodrum is better than any eternal bliss that may
await us" were not without foundation in reality. Throughout
history Bodrum, known as Halicarnassos in ancient times,
has always been fought over and people have been unwilling
to share its beauty with others.
Built on a peninsula formed by the meeting of the eastern
and western harbors, Bodrum, with its narrow streets winding
down to the sea, is famous for its castle, its world-renowned
yachts, its shipyards and the dazzling white houses and
tombs lining the shores of its two harbors.
Bodrum has all the facilities to meet the expectations of
tourists from all income levels ranging from the rich yacht
owners to the penny counting tourists who just want a reasonable
room to make his vacation last all summer.
Bodrum has been the cradle of several civilizations. Down
through the ages it has suffered from the countless invasions
of those coming from the Aegean islands and has been important
to all those powers wishing to dominate the Aegean.Halicarnassos(Bodrum)
was an important city in the Caria civilization which was
located between its much more powerful neighbors Lykia and
Ionia. The region boasts such greats as the historian Heredotus,
history's first woman admiral Artemisia I, and the just-as-skilled
Artemisia II as well as artists like Leachares and Shepas.
Bodrum experienced the dominance of various civilizations
throughout the history such as Persians,Mecedonians,Roman
Empire and Byzantines. Byzantines lost their power in Anatolian
region after they were defeated by the Seljuk Ruler Alpaslan
at Malazgirt in 1071. Rhodian knights had constructed the
present Bodrum castle and established theirrule over the
region. Sultan Süleyman the Magnificent on his military
expedition to Rhodes conquered Bodrum together with Rhodes
and added them to the territory of Ottoman Empire.
Summers are hot and dry while winters are mild and rainy.
WHERE TO VISIT?
The Underwater Archeological Museum of Bodrum
It is one of the most important and biggest museums of its
kind in the world. The relics recovered from excavation
which started in the 1960's are on display in this museum
located in the Bodrum Castle.The Eastern Mediterranean amphora
collection as well as findings resulting from research on
sunken ships in the immediate vicinity are on display. The
significant of this sunken ships are those at Yassıada,
Şeytan Brook and Serçe Harbour. The remains of the oldest
known sunken ship in the world are also here and well-worth
Bodrum Castle Tel: (+90-252) 316 10 95
Open hours to visit: 10:00-12:00, 14:00-18:00
Open days to visit: Everyday except Monday.
Maussolleion Open Air Museum
It gets its name from the fact that the tomb of Mausolos,
the King of Caria, is located here. His wife, also his sister,
had the most famous architects of the day design the structure.
It was almost completely destroyed in the Great Anatolian
earthquake. There is a small museum here at the site of
this tomb which was one of the seven wonders of the ancient
world. The word "maussolleion" is taken from King Mausolos'
name. Many of the stones of this Mausoleum were used in
the construction of Bodrum Castle. The beautiful reliefs
on the grave, however, were taken to the British Museum
during the excavations in the 19th century.
The theater is located on the Bodrum - Turgutreis road.
It has an audience capacity of 13,000 seats. The stage area
has been uncovered and the seats have been restored.
Above the theater on the slope are rock tombs that belong
to the Hellenistic and Roman periods.
Located west of the city, it is one of the entrances to
the city of Halicarnassos. The Myndos Door consisted of
two monumental towers and an inner courtyard at the gate
that lead to the city.
Çıfıt Castle (Aspat)
Built on a rocky outcrop in the southwestern portion of
the peninsula close to Bağla cove, it contains artefacts
from several civilizations.
Located on the Yatağan - Milas highway, the ruins in the
village of Eskihisar contains a very rich collection of
artefacts from the Caria, Roman and Byzantine eras.
The temple of Hecate can be reached by following the dirt
road (9 km) leading to Turgut. Excavations have shown that
this city, once an important center of the Caria Civilization,
has been inhabited since the Early Bronze Age.
One of the most eminent ruins of the region with its rich
history and natural beauty, Sedir Island can be reached
by boat either from Gökova - Akyaka or Çamlıköy. The ruins
which one would want to see first are the Temple of Apollo,
the theater,and the ancient harbor. The famous Cleopatra
beach is here as well.
Cisterns built by the Ottomans and known as "Gümbet" can
be seen all over the peninsula. They were built by the wealthy
citizens who named the cisterns after themselves.
Bodrum Castle (Saint Petrum)
Built by the Knights of Rhodes in the 15th century and dedicated
to St. Peter, the construction of the castle was completed
in 99 years. It was built on Zephyrion island, the original
site of the city of Halicarnassos.Stones and reliefs from
the Mausoleum of King Mausolos were used in its construction.
There are 5 towers in this castle; French, English, Italian,
German and Snake towers. The castle covers approximately
30,000 sq. meters.
Mustafa Pasa Mosque
Upon his arrival to Bodrum to construct a dockyard, Mustafa
Paşa from Kızılhisar,made this mosque built. (1723).
It was constructed by Hamam Ağa, the steward of Mustafa
It was built in 1901 through the means of the monatery fund
provided by the amount gathered among the public and given
by Abdulhamit II.
Saldırsah Horasani Tomb, Kubbeli Tomb, Mustafa Pasha Tomb
including the grave of Kaptan-ı Derya Cafer Pasha and Koyunbaba
Tomb are worth to see.
Güvercinlik: A cove of unusual beauty with every
conceivable tone green and blue, it is located 25 km from
Bodrum. Salih Island, located right across the water, only
serves to enhance the natural appeal of this beautiful cove.
Torba: A peaceful little village just 5 km from Bodrum
is a charming and lively place where the shining sea melds
with the green pines and olive trees. There are boats going
to Didim, Milet and Priene from here.
Gölköy: Located 13 km north of Bodrum, this beautiful
cove blends the green of olive, tangerine and pine trees
with that of palms. Because it faces the north, it is always
lush and the water in the cove is cooler than that in the
Türkbükü: Situated beside Gölköy, at a distanceof
15 km from Bodrum, it resembles Gölköy in almost every way.
It is one of the places preferred by people looking for
peace and quiet.
Gündoğan: Located 18 km from Bodrum, Gündoğan cove
is one of the coves that has been least changed by man and
which still preserves its beauty in the most natural way.
Its tangerine orchards are famous.
Yalıkavak: This village is 18 km from Bodrum in the
northwestern part of the peninsula. It is famous for its
windmills, fish, citrus orchards and sea. The most famous
sponge divers have come from this village.
Gümüşlük: It is one of the oldest settlements on
the peninsula. It is still possible to see the underwater
remains of the old harbor wall which connected Tavşan Island
to the mainland. The sea and fish here are famous. Watching
the sun set here amidst the lush green vegetation will be
a life-long memory.
Kadıkalesi: The sandy beaches of this crystal clear
sea are surrounded with citrus orchards. Situated 23 km
from Bodrum, it gets its name from the remains of a nearby
castle belonging to the Hellenistic era.
Turgutreis: Situated 20 km from Bodrum, the town
is famous for its tangerine orchards. It was named after
the famous Turkish admiral, Turgut Reis. In terms of population,
it is one of the most populous areas of the peninsula. It
is known for its unforgettable sunsets.
Akyarlar: This cove with its wonderful beach and
crystal clear waters is 13 km from Bodrum. It is one of
the best places to surf.
Karaincir: Situated 16 km out of Bodrum, its 500
m. beach is one of the best in the area.
Bağla: With one of the best coves and beaches on
the peninsula, it is an excellent place to camp and is 14
km from Bodrum.
Aspat: Rising out of the shores of the Aegean and
mentioned often in Turkish folk music, the real name of
Aspat is Aspartos. Built on a barren rock, the perimeter
of Aspat Castle measures 700 paces. The remains of several
civilizations dating back to the Classical Age can be seen
Ortakent: Located 14 km from Bodrum, its waters are
warm and it has sandy beaches. Its tangerine orchards are
quite famous. It is one of the best vantage points from
which to view village life in Bodrum.
Bitez: One of the most beautiful coves on the peninsula,
it is 10 km from Bodrum. It has sandy beaches. It is a beautiful
quiet corner where blue and green reach out to touch each
other in the tangerine orchards which stretch from the village
to the sea.
Gümbet: About 3 km west of Bodrum, its waters are
very shallow. Bardakçı is at a distance of 500 m. from Bodrum.
Most people go there by boat. It is known for its beach
and the water, which is as clear as glass, as well as the
fresh water spring there.
Bardakçi: It is 500 m. from Bodrum.One can reach
to Bardakçı by sea easily.Its crystal clear sea is well-known
for its springs.
Karaada: Situated 6 km from Bodrum, it is famous
for its healing mineral springs. The water comes out of
a cave and the mud from the cave is said to be good for
Ada Boğazı (Aquarium): It is called as Aquarium because
of its crystal-clear waters. IIn the open waters, the seafloor
to 30 m depth can be seen with the naked eye.
TRADITIONAL BODRUM HOUSES
The common features of the traditional architecture used
in Bodrum are windowless first floors and doors on the second
storey with access by way of ladders that can be drawn up
into the house. These houses, which are now protected by
the government, are located mostly in the villages of Ortakent
and Kocakaya above Gümüşlük. Individuals,such as artists
and writers who have settled in Bodrum have done a great
service to the area by restoring older houses and this has
made it an even more interesting place to visit.
With everything from manufacturing and maintenance to repair
and operation, the yachting center of Turkey is Bodrum.
The tradition of building schooners continues in the İçmeler
Shipyard, whose name has become almost synonymous with Bodrum
itself. As big as many modern shipyards, luxury sailboats
up to 30 meters can be built here using the latest available
The marina has a capacity of 275-yachts. The marina also
has 12 slips for the maintenance and repair of yachts as
well as wintering.
The yacht races in Bodrum are probably the only ones in
the world that completely inexperienced people can participate
in, even children have participated. The Bodrum Cup is the
most comfortable competition for 15-30 m. luxury yachts
in the world.
THE BLUE VOYAGE
Stretching from Bodrum to the south-east, Gökova Bay has
been named after Halikarnas Balıkçısı and Azra Erhat as
the Blue Voyage when they first discovered it. Boats which
pull up anchor in Bodrum and head for Gökova will soon discover
the ultimate harmony of green and blue and the beauties
which lie under the crystal clear waters. A center for manufacturing
boats for centuries, the demand of sea-faring visitors has
made yacht tourism one of the principal sources of income
in Bodrum. Among the first places seen on "The Blue Journey"
are Karaada, Kargacık Bükü, Pabuç Burnu, Kargı Adası, Alakışla
and Çökertme. Other important stops on "The Blue Journey"
are the forested and crystal clear coves of KüçükÇatı, Büyük
Çatı, Yedi Adalar, Longöz, Değirmen Bükü, and Karacasöğüt.
Besides the natural beauty, historic sites such as Sedir
Island, the ancient city of Keramos and Yedi Adalar are
frequent stopping places. Allow 7-10 days for this journey,
which is open to anyone who wants to join one of the groups.
On the Aegean coast, Bodrum is famous for its colourful
life. Besides the vitality and colourfulness of the city
in the daytime, Bodrum is also renowned for its exceptionally
appealing nightlife From İskele Square to the end of Kumbahçe
District, Cumhuriyet Street is lined with bars, pubs, discos
and taverns that guarantee fun and good times for people
of all ages. In the mysterious darkness of the Bodrum nights,
the magical shimmer that surrounds Bodrum castle adds a
certain charm to the atmosphere. The heartbeat of the city's
nightlife is in the bars of Bodrum where every kind of music,
from jazz to tavern music, can be heard.