Iassos is a short drive North from Bodrum, following part of the route as if you were going to Ephesus. It is a lesser known but equally impressive site that you may have to arrange to visit independently or ask specialist agents in the town for a tour.
This city showed evidence of Minoan and Mycenean habitation and is fairly Greek inspired. Remains of a later Roman Agora, mosaics and the vilage have been excavated as has the city walls further back from the main site.
Astulik is a travel agency on the marina that specialise in group and private bookings for excursions. I am recommending them because of their good service when I booked a private trip this summer. While they are more expensive than some of their competitors - their service and flexibility when designing the perfect excursion is invaluable. The driver we had for the day was accomodating and very humorous.
Our tour guide was not as learned as we would have liked but he was a nice man who took us to all of the places on our wish list for the day, even suggesting other places of interest to an archaeology mind. THis meant I saw more than planned. I thought the expense was well worth it!
Bodrum has a number of excellent Internet cafes (so that you never have to go without VT for too long!!) and the cost is minimal.
The one I used was on the main road beside Bar Street (not the pedestrianised road but the adjacent street where the taxi's are parked at the bottom). There are actually two internet cafes opposite each other here. Both are competing for the same trade so the prices are very reasonable. I paid a couple of YTL for half an hour. The machines had good connectivity and the cafe was air conditioned and the girl who ran the place was very helpful.
Bodrum (or Halikarnassus as it was originally called) was a walled city. Very little would indicate this unless you have a closer inspection. The best preserved evidence of this defensive structure is the Myndos Gate on the very outskirts of the town. The gate was the western exit from the city on the raod to Myndos (hence the name and you will see that it is very near a street called Myndos Caddessi). Myndos still exits but is now called by its modern name - Gumusluk. These walls were most likely built by King Mausolos and did extend for nearly 5 miles around the town. Myndos was also created by King Mausolos - busy man :-)
This gate was the scene of one of Bodrum's most gruesome incidents - when Alexander the Great attacked the Persians who were in the town in 334BC, there was great loss of Bodrum life during that period and Alexander destpyed the gate and much of the wall that prevented his access to Halicarnassus.
This site has no charge to access it and has been the centre of a hugely expensive restoration by Turkish businesses. It is a fair walk to reach the gate and again in the heat you may opt for a taxi ride there, we did. Once there it is well worth it and we were especially pleased to see how much is actually in tact compared with guidebook suggestions.
There is an Amphitheatre in Bodrum. The previous years was just a monument for visitors but in our days you can watch music concerts or other performances there. The construction completed in Roman era but it had begun during King Mausoleus.
Nothing to get excited with though but it’s worth to visit the area because from there you will have a nice view of Bodrum.
Around the castle there are some narrow tiny streets (sokak in turkish) full of souvenir shops, small cafes, pubs etc.. Of course during the night it’s get overcrowded. Not my kind of nightlife but if you are there for the fun you will enjoy it. Of course there is a McDonalds like everywhere, where you can eat a McTurco!(pic 2) But you are in Turkey folks, a country with great local cousine, taste some real tasty local foods, don’t choose the easy way.
It’s really nice to see the Marina of Bodrum. Hundreds of beautiful boats, yachts and other sailing boats are there for your eyes and your photo camera. I spent some time there only strolling along the promenade, watching people passing by etc Some of the owners are there all day taking care of their “babies” and some of them are really nice to see. But I think it’s an expensive hobby...
You can go to Kos for a whole day for 12 euros from Bodrum with Bodrum Express Ferry.
It takes about 1 hour from Bodrum to Kos, the only thing you don't have to forget is your turkish visum and/or your passport.
On tuesday's there is a market in Bodrum, but also a market in Milas. This is the biggest market in the region of Bodrum. Ok, it will take you about 45 mins to drive over there in a bus, but prices over there are unbeatable. You'll have to check a local tourist company to get you there.
We booked all of our with Director Tours near the bus station and received outstanding service.
1.Ephesus ruins are a most see £20pp incl lunch - picked up early at 6:30am and did not return back to the hotel until approx 7pm
2.Boat trip was a really relaxing full day in the sun visiting smaller islands £7pp incl lunch
3.Turgutreis saturday market - again another must. Most companies offer this free
4.Ferry to Kos £17 although we were lucky to go via hydrofoil as they had overbooked the ferry!
In addition you can get the dolmus (bus) from the station to Gumbet and Bitez for approx £1.50. Gumbet is quite lively and Bitez is tiny with a wonderful beach.
The waterpark is about 3 miles outside Bodrum (north along the peninsula) near a town calles Ortakent. You can get to the waterpark by dolmus, taxi or go on an arranged vist from the tour operator - however the park costs about 20YTL and is much more expensive if you go as part of an organisd trip.
The park has loads of slides and watery rides in a range of terrifying types. The large slides (You can't miss them!) are scary enough - some are open to the air and others are covered, like tubes and these are quite claustrophobic. The black hole slide is just that. There are pools with wave machines.
Food is no problem as the park is full of snack bars and fast food restaurants - no quality but cheap and quick.
The parks website is in turkish but it's not s problem as the park is advertised all over bodrum in English.
Rhodes is much further away from Bodrum than the local Greek island of Kos (about 200km) but Rhodes is a fantastic island, and the old town has plenty to see and do for a day if you can cope with the long hydrofoil journey, that lasts for approx 2 hours. This trip only runs in the summer, only runs once a week and is very determined by the weather.
Rhodes town has a strong connection with Bodrum since it to owes much of it's construction and a large chunk of its history to the Knights of St John (who built Bodrum Castle). Waking around the walls and inside the town reveals shops and nice places to eat as well as an opportunity to stand where the colossus of Rhodes once stood (that will be your second ancient wonder of the world after the mausoleum of Halikarnassus).
You will not have enough time in Rhodes to stray much further than the old town and this is likely to be a tiring day due to the amount of travel but it may give you enough of a taste of Rhodes to entice you back for a longer holiday there.
There are quite a few Greek islands in very close proximity to Bodrum, and should Bodrum be proving to exciting (or not exciting enough!) you could consider a visit to Kos.
A day trip to the place where Hippocrates was born (the man who was responsible for the Hippocratic oath that doctors used to take) takes about 1 hour by ferry from Bodrum harbour, it's only 15km away. There is lots of archaeology to see on the island and it's quite a small place so you can see a lot during the few hours you are there. Try to do any souvinier shopping before the Greek people have their lunchtime Siesta as most of the shops and businesses will take a short break in the middle of the day. The downside to any visit to Greece from Turkey is the customs before you go...it's a long and boring task (DON'T FORGET YOUR PASSPORT!!).
The ferries leave at about 9am and return to Bodrum in the late afternoon. If you book in advance the ferry company will collect you from your hotel and bring you to the harbour. There is a faster hydrofoil but I'm unsure how long this takes or cost.
Situated on the main road that runs through Bodrum, the Theatre is not the best example of amphitheatres but it is relatively well preserved (it has also undergone some restoration). The site is mostly used now for public musical/operatic performances.
King Mausolus began the work on the theatre but it was completed and changed by the Romans to met their needs. It has been suggested that this theatre was used as a site for Gladiatorial fights but there is no great evidence for this.
The seating rows, orchestra area and stage are easily identifiable.
The site is easily reached by walking but due to the danger of the main road I would recommend getting a taxi from the town centre (about 7YTL and the driver will probably wait for you if you ask nicely!!). There is no entry fee to get onto the site but if there is a scheduled concert or performance there may be limited access.
One of the Seven Wonders of the World stands proudly in Bodrum - I say stands but in reality it is far from being as it was when it was designed and built to keep the remains of King Mausolus secure. The building work was begun 2 years before he died and finished by his wife but we can only imagine what the full structure would have looked like. Archaeologists think the Mausoleum was 41 metres tall. When the Knights of St John came to Bodrum the Mausoleum was already falling apart (then they assisted its demise somewhat!!) and they used some of the stones in their Castle building project.
Very little remains of the Mausoleum except the reconstructed foundations and there is an exhibition area that shows mock ups/models of what the full building may have looked like. The remains are easily found by heading down Neyzen Tevfik Caddessi and half way you will see signs to turn left and then yellow signs will show you the way. There is a small entrance charge.
This small property is both central (10 min walk to the bazaar and waterfront) and secluded and...more
The Club Med is situated about 20 mins drive (or 30 by Dolmus) from Bodrum, in a little bay. There...more
We couldn't fault the physical hotel. The views are great; the hotel is clean, very interesting...more