Turquoise waters of Bodrum

May 2016

Bodrum is one of the tourist paradises of the Turkish-Mediterranean coast. During the summer season thousands of tourist, mostly British and Russians, come to this city and along the year around many Turks too.

Although it is a coastal area, you can’t come to Bodrum thinking of white-sand kilometric and quiet beaches. There are small beaches, or at least small (both in length and number) sandy beaches, and what it looks like the beach are small rocky loops that hotels and restaurants try to get their hammocks, tables, and chairs first. The very few beaches you can find are private, as in many other coastal areas in Turkey. So, why do people go to Bodrum? and, why are we talking about Bodrum here? Well, as in other areas of Turkey, Bodrum offers a few other activities in the coast (May 2016).

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We stayed in a pension with small but clean rooms, a perfect courtyard to have breakfast and the nicest owners: Tay Pensiyon, furthermore, is right in the center of Bodrum, only 3 minutes away from the castle and there is no noise at all as it is not on the main street.

We spent our first day was (from 11 to 17h) on a boat enjoying one cove after another around the Black Island. The island hasn’t got any spectacular beach itself but the crystal turquoise water can make you appreciate all the fish everytime you get a swim. Boats can vary in size as we were not yet in high season it was a small boat (up to 46 passengers), loud music and acting a bit crazy we headed towards to the coves. In the evening, we walked around Bodrum and decided to go to a recommended restaurant: Memdof, a bit more expensive but delicious.

237TL (71€)

Seabass marinated in mostard, grilled octopus, grilled seabass, you should definitely try it. And don’t forget to try dessert: baklava with ice-cream, no words!

Our second day was also about boats; this time for scuba diving. We went back to the Black Island but this time, we stayed at Pacoz Bay (it is pronounced Payos): two dips and the meal, all included in the price with Happy Bubbles. Although it may seem impressive just to watch the bottom of the see from the outside thanks to the clear waters, the experience from the inside is captivating. Lots of fish around you and great visibility make the trip to Bodrum worth it. On our second dive: we visited a plane wreck. Being able to see the wings of the airplane and how the flora and fauna grows… More fish, more species… We got out of the water wanting more (which means we are most probably heading back).

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An experience you should not miss is going for a meal at the Fish Market. Restaurants are surrounded by the fishmongers, so you choose a restaurant and you buy the fish you are going to eat. Just tell them how you want the fish to be done and you’ll have it on your plate. Don’t ever forget mezes (appetizers) in Turkey.

145TL (43€)

Grilled prawns, fried calamari, baked fish: very good.

Our last day: cloudy. It’s not always a bad thing, we had already foreseen the changing of the weather forecast and decided to leave the tourist visits for the last day. As soon as we left the pension we realized that a huge cruise had docked at the port, so the city was already full. Bodrum has few tourists attractions, but we still wanted to get the most of it.

St. Peter’s Castle is right in the marina, and you can see its silhouette from almost any side of the city. Inside there are a few exhibitions and amongst them the treasures found in the sea: amphora’s from the VI century B.C., crystal vases… and of course a bit of the sight of the different eras the castle, and Bodrum, had seen.

Another of the city’s treasure is the Mausoleum, one of the 7 Wonders of the Ancient World, although there is nothing left of it today. We couldn’t really get in but from the outside, you could see what was left of it. Finally, we visited the old roman ttheater such a pity: you could see it from the highway (that you will have to find your way to cross it), it was not taken care of or prepared for the tourists. These two sites that could play a role in attracting tourists to Bodrum are wasted, people go to Bodrum for the turquoise water and not for its cultural side, but it could still be taken better care.

One last meal: manti, this traditional Turkish dish was delicious (and cheap) at a very small restaurant that only serves a few dishes, just in case you wanted to taste something different!

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Even with our cloudy last day our visit to Bodrum it was a great experience: the food and the boat moments made it worth it (as always).

All the pictures and videos of Turkey are in the Gallery and you can also check other sights of the country in our Turkey section

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