Welcome to Bodrum!
Bodrum, Turkey, is a beautiful, elegant, sun-drenched spot on the coast, tucked away behind the casually scattered Dodecanese Islands in the Mediterranean. It is suffused with history, as the site of the ancient Halicarnassus, but nevertheless has a surprisingly youthful spirit. Although over a million tourists flock to the Bodrum beaches and nearby resorts every year, the town itself retains the simplicity, charm, and picturesque beauty that is captivating.
The Bodrum Airport is busy with tourists, as the city is a well-known spot on many summer itineraries, but a worldwide local can find hidden treasures and under-the-radar experiences, really getting under the skin of a place. This is an insider’s guide to some of Bodrum’s most exciting spots.
Get Lost in Bodrum
Bodrum’s old town is a delight of rambling lanes, cobbled streets, and gorgeous white houses decked out in bougainvillea. The best place to start your visit in Bodrum is just to have a wander, get lost, and admire the beautiful old town and its surprisingly eclectic street art. Step out of your Bodrum hotel and just keep walking. End up down on the waterfront for breathtaking views of the sea, and try some of the best restaurants in town. The seafood tasting menu at Orfoz is a particular highlight.
Worldwide Local Tip: Kortan 365 is a lovely little eatery right on the sea, housed in a building that dates back over 450 years, with an excellent terrace overlooking the water. It’s a great place to sample traditional mezes and Turkish cuisine--and the vibe gets pretty lively after dark as well!
Bodrum’s history looms large over the town, in the shape of its magnificent 15th century castle. Built by the Knights Hospitaller, it stands guard over the harbor and boasts magnificent sunset views from the main tower. It also houses the Museum of Underwater Archaeology, an astonishing attraction with some remarkable relics--one of the most significant museums of its type in the world.
Worldwide Local Tip: For a real dive into Bodrum’s history, drive up to Turgutreis, Halicarnassus’s ancient amphitheater, carved out of the side of the hill thousands of years ago. Time your trip to coincide with one of the summer’s concerts or performances for a genuinely breathtaking, once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Make the Most of the Gorgeous Bodrum Weather
The Bodrum peninsula has some of the best beaches in Turkey, and despite their popularity, there are still hidden gems to be found. Ilgin Cove, in the village of Mazi, is remote, isolated, and perfect for exactly those reasons. Bring your own supplies, as there really isn’t much here beyond peace, serenity, and the beautiful glittering sea!
Worldwide Local Tip: For a properly Turkish experience, head to Gümüşlük. A charming town populated largely by locals with a beautiful bay, excellent arts and crafts shops, and some superb Bodrum restaurants. Watching the sun go down from Restaurant Limon is an experience you won’t forget in a hurry.
Enjoy Your Stay!
Despite the resorts and crowded beaches around the peninsula, Bodrum remains a truly delightful old town, with plenty of hidden gems and plenty to see and do away from the hustle and bustle. As a worldwide local you can step off the tourist trail and experience some of the most exciting things that Bodrum has to offer!