On the South Aegean coast of Turkey lays the town of Bodrum, with its dichotomy of modern architecture interspersed with the ruins of an ancient metropolis. The 28,000 natives of this eclectic village prosper mainly from boat-building, fishing, agriculture, weaving and, of course, tourism.
Home to the Tomb of King Mausolus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World which is attributed to Artemisia II and the source of the modern word, Mausoleum, Bodrum, formerly known as Halicarnassus, is famous as one of the hot spots of the Tourism Industry in Turkey. In their endless quest for inspiration, famous artists from Turkey and abroad flock to explore Bodrum’s quaint charm and picturesque surroundings. Bodrum is the host to a plethora of social and cultural events every year:
Beginning with New Years Day, the celebration is all you’ve come to expect around the world.
In mid-May, the Bodrum Bicycle Festival encourages drivers to take a two-wheel approach, promoting clean air in the town. The bike-ride begins on Neyzen Tevfik Street and end up at Quay Centre.
A variety of demonstrations and exhibits of antique diving equipment highlight the Bodrum Underwater Society Diving Festival.
From late July to early August, the Bodrum Festival is an attraction for multitudes of on-lookers with its numerous musical performances in the scenic setting of the Castle.
In August, the neighboring, seaside village of Gumusluk hosts the Gumusluk international Classical Music Festival, with additional shows featuring top musicians from Turkey and around the world at the Bodrum Amphitheatre.
In mid-August, at the Yalikavak Marina, the Aegean Festival features regional dishes, folk music and dancing.
At the Castle of St. Peter, in mid to late August, celebrated orchestras perform classical repertoires for the Bodrum International Ballet Festival.
The Bodrum Cup Wooden Yacht Regatta – Every October, this entertaining regatta sees the racing participation of traditional wooden craft from the world over.
These are but a few of the many events hosted in Bodrum. Before Cevat Sakir made Bodrum famous in the 1960s, it was little more a sleepy, fishing village. Under his pen-name, “The Fisherman of Halicarnassus”, Sakir romanticized the charming little town as he described seeing the Aegean Coast in a gullet. His book, “Blue Voyage”, had a tremendous impact upon the local boat-building and tourism industries.
In the cool shade of St. Peter’s Castle, you can find the heart of this little town, with its narrow streets lined with inviting bars, restaurants and shops. Cumhuriyet Caddesi, the main street, is a dream for shopping enthusiasts and rookies alike. In its boutiques and souvenir shops, you can treat yourself to our exotic wares. Precious stones, copper and brassware, custom-designed clothing creations in our native blue prints and luxurious textiles, fezzes, even harem slippers…all of this awaits you. Able artisans offer to pamper your feet with handcrafted sandals. Sample a plethora of international as well as traditional Ottoman cuisine in our restaurants and cafes. You simply can not visit without trying Raki, the Turkish National drink, its grape-derived essence a wonderful complement to a white cheese, going delightfully, as well, with fresh tomatoes, cucumbers or seafood.
The setting of the sun heralds the latest popular beats from London, Berlin or New York, and Bodrum comes to life. The trendy start for a night on the town is enjoying a cocktail poolside or on the beach, followed by a jaunt to one of the many happening bars and restaurants. Some prefer to meet on Cumhuriyet Caddesi, the well-known Bar Street, before hitting the popular clubs to dance the night away. Bodrum is a relaxing haven in the off-season, with its appealing alleys filled with rows of old-fashioned white houses. The marina is the perfect spot to get cozy and take in a spectacular sunset. The summer months can get pretty wild here, but if serenity is what you seek, the bohemian villages like Bardakci, Gumbet, Bitez, Ortakent, Turgutreis, Gumusluk, Yalikavak, Turkbuku and Torba lining the sandy coastal inlets of the peninsula are just a hop, skip and a jump away by “Dolmush”. There are many of these enchanting and picture-perfect little villages on the peninsula, just waiting to be discovered.