Bodrum occupies a special place in many people's hearts. A popular home and resort for Turkish artists and intellectuals, Bodrum's first remembered literary character was known as the "Halicarnassus Fisherman". After the formation of the Turkish Republic in 1923 Cevat Sakir Kabaagacli was exiled to Bodrum due to his unpopular political expressions.
His subsequent books and stories about life in Bodrum attracted like minded romantics to the town and were largely responsible for creating the Bohemian atmosphere Bodrum enjoys today. In fact although mostly unknown outside Turkey, Cevat Sakir Kabaagacli ranks with King Mausolus as one of Bodrum's most famous residents.ou are never far from the sea anywhere on the Bodrum peninsula, making Bodrum itself an ideal starting point from which to visit the many peaceful havens along its beautiful coastline.
In August the average daily air temperature is 33 C with warm seas of 25 C, perfect for any aquatic activity.To be truthful, beaches in the Bodrum area are not the best in Turkey, tending to be rather narrow and shingly. However, in every village or resort, in front of hotels and seaside restaurants, there are wooden jetties for sunbathing, free for everyone's enjoyment. There is never a lack of comfortable, uncrowded space for swimming and sunbathing. Another plus is that the rent-a-bed bunch are not to be seen. While some hotels do reserve their sun beds for their own guests, first come first served is the rule on local beaches.
It is difficult to find cleaner, clearer water than that on the Turkish coast. No matter where you go, visibility is always excellent. This combined with an absence of heavy seas or strong tides and currents make the Bodrum area a swimmer's and snorkeler's paradise. For those interested in spending more time underwater than one breath there are several scuba diving centers in the area offering instruction and equipment hire, for the beginner or expert.
Recently declared one of the world's best windsurfing areas by a popular windsurfing magazine, you are never far from a board anywhere on the peninsula.Windsurf schools and rental facilities abound, particularly in Gumbet and Bitez. If you're after speed and thrills of a different kind, water-skiing, jetskiing and parasailing are also available on several beaches.As a major boat building and yachting center it is only fitting that you can enjoy boating from almost anywhere on the peninsula. From canoes and pedaloes to luxury motorsailers, all types of craft are
Perhaps the most inexpensive aquatic excursions are the numerous dayboat trips.
Locally captained and crewed these boats make a day of it; stopping at the best swimming areas on the way and usually calling at a seaside restaurant for lunch.
One popular stop on such excursions is "Karaada" or Black Island, where warm springs flow from a shoreline cave into a walled-in pool jutting into the sea. In addition, daily or weekly charters may be enjoyed on literally dozens of yachts, be they the traditional Turkish gulet, for motor sailing comfort, or modern sailing yachts, for those interested in serious sailing.If you prefer to spend your holiday ashore, there's plenty to do for the landlubber as well.
Turkey is the proud possessor of more recognized historical and archaeological sites than any other country in the world. Bodrum's Aegean location offers the opportunity to see some of the best. From the spectacular ancient city of Ephesus or the unique Temple of Apollo at Didyma to quaint and secluded Iasus, a two thousand-year trip into the past is only a few hours away. Travelling by organized tour, rent-a-car or public bus, numerous spectacular sites are close enough to be visited easily in a day.
Bodrum's own history is second to none. Birth place of Heredotus (the "Father of History"); home of Mausolus, entombed in one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World; and visited by Alexander The Great (who enjoyed a lengthy stay), Bodrum is a unique combination of ancient and modern.Sites not to be missed in Bodrum itself include the Mausoleum, the amphitheater on the hill above town and the early fifteenth century Castle of St. Peter
Spectacular in its own right with its lush gardens, massive stone works and diverse towers, the Castle also houses a world famous museum of underwater archaeology.If you like to shop then Bodrum is for you. Leather is abundant, in the latest fashions and at excellent prices. Turkey is one of the world's largest carpet producers and traditional hand made carpets are priced considerably less than abroad. Hand made jewelry, brass, copper, woodcrafts and gifts are plentiful and sales are usually conducted over a friendly glass of tea and a serious discussion about price. Turkey is also a large textile producer and modern sportswear can be had at significant savings. The local tailors are perfectly willing to custom make clothing to size, be it traditional Turkish trousers "shalvar" or a copy of the latest casual evening wear.Market day in Bodrum presents an opportunity to experience a real Turkish bazaar.
Ever Thursday and Friday farmers and tradesman from surrounding villages bring their produce and wares to the Bodrum bazaar. Worth a visit for the atmosphere alone, fantastic bargains can be found on everything from fresh fruit, cheeses and aromatic herbs and spices, to carpets, clothing and shoes.As Bodrum has become more popular over the past few years services have steadily improved, creating in Bodrum a complete self contained community for visitors and residents alike. Doctors, dentists, laundries, car repair, shops and utilities now cater for almost every need.Visiting yachtsmen are now provided with the services of the Karada Bodrum Marina, whether staying for a night or a season.
The new three hundred and fifty-berth marina offers every service a yachtsman could ask for, resulting in many boat owners berthing here permanently.Bodrum is definitely growing, with Turks and foreigners alike attracted to its warm, relaxing atmosphere. Growth inevitably brings change, but fortunately some things will always stay the same. In Bodrum you can always count on the sunny weather, the warm hospitality of its residents, the sight of a fully laden camel wending its way through the back streets and from the top of the minarets, the wailing cry of the muezzin, calling the faithful to prayer.