Where to go

Where to go

Village Tour
This tour will give you an idea of a typical life style in a Turkish village. We recommend you join this tour to find out more about Turkish people. You will also have a pleasant walk under old majestic trees, leading you to a water mill and a little waterfall where you can swim in cool waters after a hot day. After having lunch in the village you will have a swimming break, and our program will continue with a visit to a large mosque.

Owing to the emphasis placed on cleanliness in Turkish society, there have been public bathhouses (“hamam”) in Turkey since medieval times. There are separate baths for men and women, or, when there is only one bathhouse in the town, different days or times of day are allocated for men and women. After entering the “hamam” and leaving one’s clothes in a cubicle, one proceeds wrapped in a towel (“pestamal”) to the “göbektasi”, a large heated stone where one perspires and is rubbed down by a bath attendant. If the heat proves too much, one can retire to a cooler room for a while. This method of bathing is most refreshing and many of the old marble baths are very interesting, architecturally.

Hint: visit Hamam in the beginning of your vacation to scrub away the tiredness and old skin cells to be ready for a relaxing holiday!
Like the harem, this Roman and Byzantine tradition was adopted and then perfected by the Selcuk Turks, for whom the public bath took on an important role. It was not merely a place where believers could fulfill the Islamic precept of cleanliness. It was a place in which to mingle, socialize and gossip. Women would proceed from their harem to the hamam with great ceremony, accompanied by servants heavily-laden with delicacies to tide the ladies over the hours they would spend lounging in the steam. The young women used this opportunity to show off their ornately embroidered towels and ivory inlaid slippers, not to mention their youthful figures, while older women would spot potential wives for their sons. Men would discuss the latest court scandal or talk business and politics. Contrary to popular ideas, hamams have always been either permanently designated for one of the sexes, or have a separate schedule for men and women.

Mugla is a typical Anatolian town with a population of 105,860 and situated 56 km away from Marmaris. Mugla is the capital of Mugla province, where Marmaris and other resorts are located. The market is held every Thursday and is quite original indeed. There you will find fresh vegetables and fruits, all kinds of spices and groceries. Likewise, producers coming from various parts of the countryside offer a striking cross-section of the Anatolian life. A visit to the original Mugla houses will add spice to your outing!

Turunc fishing village with its coarse sandy beach lies just outside Marmaris bay. It has hotels of all classes and small open restaurants offering fish and chicken dishes.

The easiest and most enjoyable way to reach Turunc is by one of the many small boats plying between here and Marmaris. Alternatively the twisting road from Icmeler over the pine-clad hills offers a super vista just before dropping down 500 meters into the village.

Paradise Island
This island to the south of Marmaris, linked to the mainland by a causeway, was known as Nimera in ancient times and the remains of a monastery can still be seen. The island offers scenic beauty, fine beaches and views across the bay to Marmaris itself and its phosphorescent rocks in the caves reflect the blue of the sea, giving it its alternative name, Blue Cave.
On the south of the Paradise island lies Aquarium Bay, a lunch stop for many of the boat trips and much loved by photographers for the unspoiled natural beauty and the unbelievable range of blues in the sea.

Ciftlik – Bayır
Accessible by road from Icmeler, this village is famous for its clean natural beach and small restaurants. There is also a 4 star tourism center and beach villas. The road is often used for jeep safaris, so many people prefer to enjoy a short sail from Marmaris, returning to their hotels with the same boat in the evening.

Cleopatra’s Island
It is known as Cleopatra’s Island, a unique paradise with its garden sands on Roman ruins, located in the Gulf of Gokova. The area is enveloped in green hills and is presently protected by a conversation order thus keeping the remains from any damage. To reach the island there is a 12 km drive through pinewoods and farmland to the shores of a small bay where you will be met by Turkish wooden fishing boats that provide the 20-minute boat ride out to the island. You will spend dreamy hours swimming in crystal clear turquoise water or take a walk inland to discover the small Roman amphitheater, towers and a church. People say that the soft white sand was brought all the way from Egypt for Anthony and Cleopatra’s honeymoon pleasures. This special carbon based sand is very precious and must be conserved so please shake out your pockets and shoes before leaving the beautiful beach.

Note: An admission fee is charged

Günnücek Picnic Site
Now known as Ataturk Park, this seaside forest of liquidamper trees is a preservation area to the west of Marmaris on the road to Paradise Island. At weekends the native folk come here to enjoy the clear seawater.

Note: An admission fee is charged

A very green and cosy atmosphere of Icmeler resort, at the western end of Marmaris bay, is for a truly relaxing holiday. Named for its famous springs whose water was said to be good for the digestive system. Icmeler lies 10 kilometers from Marmaris at the western and of the bay. Five star hotels now back its noted beach, while the older residential area nestles under the hills at the back of the town.
Every morning there is a flow of people from Marmaris to Icmeler, drawn by the fine beaches and modern discos attract a similar flow every evening.

Marmaris Castle
According to the historian Herodotus, there has been a castle in Marmaris since 3000B.C. Long after this, during the Hellenistic Age, Alexander the Great invaded Caria and the castle was besieged. The 600 inhabitants of the town realized that they had no chance against the invading army and burned their valuables in the castle before escaping to the hills with their women and children.

The invaders realized the strategic value of the castle and repaired several of the destroyed sections to house a few hundred soldiers before the main army returned home. The 17th century writer Evliya Celebi mentions the castle, which was rebuilt by Kanuni Sultan Suleyman in 1522 when he invaded Rhodes. Since 1979 restoration work has been continuing at the castle in order to restore it to near its original condition. Under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture the castle has been converted into a museum. There are 7 galleries, the largest of which is used as an exhibition hall and the courtyard is decorated with seasonal flowers. In addition to the permanent displays, cultural and artistic activities are offered.

For a visit of the Ottoman Marmaris remains start at the Caravanserai, an inn built in 1545, which includes seven small rooms and one large room. From Caravanserai walk up the stairs to the castle of Suleyman the Magnificent and visit the many galleries within, including a gallery of archeological findings. Enjoy Marmaris Bay views from one of the castle walls before making your way down the narrow winding streets of “Tepe Mahalesi” (Hill District) to view traditional local architecture.

Note: An admission fee is charged. Like all museums in Turkey, Marmaris Castle is closed on Mondays.