Bodrum’s coastline shimmers with expensive yachts, pristine sand and dazzling blue waters. It is the Saint Tropez of Turkey and is the place for people who want to party and soak up the sun. But Bodrum has another side. With tiny seaside villages and olive groves that climb high into the hills it is also a place to escape and relax and to explore archaeology and a history that stretches back to the ancient Greeks.
15th century Castle of St Peter is good place to begin Bodum’s history tour with its fascinating Museum of Underwater Archaeology. In its gardens lie the ruins of the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus and the Temple of Mars, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. The 2,000 year old ruins of Ephesus are some of the best preserved in the world and make a wonderful photograph, while the nearby waterfalls of Pamukkale, frozen in a state of white calcification, are nothing short of magical. Bodrum Amphitheatre, a once 13,000 seat venue under King Mausolus, boasts postcard views from its hillside perch overlooking the castle and the harbour. For a different view take a traditional ‘gulet’ or Turkish boat, along the coastline even stopping at a Greek island or two.
Gumbet and Torba beaches are the perfect place to soak up the sun and quiet beaches for those with young children but Bitez beach is the best for fans of water-sports, renowned for its excellent windsurfing.
Sleepy villages such as Bydolmus and Gumusluk were once part of the might ancient harbour and are now the perfect place to enjoy a quiet seafood supper to the sounds of the lapping ocean. Be sure to include a trip to Cleopatra's Pool where 35 degree waters are sheer bliss to swim in.
For the ultimate night out, head for Halikarnas where you can celebrity spot and dance until the sun pops up over the Aegean Sea.
The following information is correct as of November 2014 and is subject to change. Please check with the airline directly for complete accuracy.
Milas-Bodrum Airport is located 21 miles from the city centre of Bodrum and can be reached by car in approximately 30 minutes. A regular shuttle bus service connects the airport to the city centre in around 40-50 minutes, while taxis are another means of transport operating from the airport into Bodrum.
What you need to know
Currency: The Turkish Lira
Visas: British Nationals require a visa to enter Turkey. These ‘E-Visas’ can be obtained inline up to 3 months prior to travel, costing $20. Sometimes, Turkish visit visas are issued on arrival, valid for multiple stays up to a maximum of 90 days but it is advisable to obtain one online.
Laws: Alcohol can only be purchased and consumed by those over 18 years of age. Smoking is banned in all indoor public places, on public transport and in some outdoor areas where cultural and posting events take place. Smokers must also be 18 or over. Turkey has strict laws against the use, possession or trafficking of illegal drugs. A heavy fine or a prison sentence of 4 to 24 years is likely. It is wise to dress modestly if visiting a mosque or a religious shrine and it is also advisable to carry a form of photographic ID at all times.
Best Time to Visit
The best time to visit Bodrum is between April and May and September to October. These months are usually quieter in terms of tourist numbers, they guarantee cheaper ‘off season’ flight prices and are still warm enough to enjoy the Turkish coast. June to August are the hottest months with temperatures getting into the mid thirties and are the busiest months. Spring showers mean March is the wettest month to visit. Other reasons to visit Bodrum include the Bicycle and Diving Festivals in May and the Wooden Yacht Regatta and the Candy Festival in October.
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