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10 Best things to see & do in Bodrum

  • Bodrum, Aegean Region, Turkey

Last updated: 15 June, 2024
Expert travel writer: Jeremy Seal
  • Turkey

Close up of a gulet under full sail

Bucket List Experience

Cruise Turkey’s Turquoise Coast

Deserted, aquamarine bays, steep cliffs dense with bottle-green pines and the constant hum of cicadas creates a blissful backdrop to a typical week cruising Turkey’s southwestern ‘Turquoise’ coast. This absorbing stretch of coastline runs from Cesme to Anamur, including the towns of Kusadasi, Bodrum, Marmaris, Fethiye, and Antalya.

These small-boat sailing holidays are the perfect detox from everyday life, with days falling into a routine of swimming before breakfast, lazing on deck, more swimming, forays ashore and dinner under the stars, at anchor.

Book either as a single, a couple or a family and meet like-minded people, or charter your own gulet and choose our route. Boats come fully crewed and you don’t have to lift a finger.

Adult price: £Varies

Good for age: 13+

Duration: Min 7 days

Mausoleum of Halicarnassus

  • Bodrum, Aegean Region, Turkey

The ruins of the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus, one of the Seven Wonders of the World

Experience

One of the seven wonders of the ancient world, the mausoleum was originally built in 350 BC and reached 45 metres high. There’s little left of it now, but it’s worth visiting for those with an interest in archaeology.

Adult price: £5

Good for age: 18+

Bodrum Bazaar

  • Bodrum, Aegean Region, Turkey

Traditional Turkish patterned rugs for sale

Experience

This tangle of streets is shopping heaven, if you don’t mind the odd bit of pressure selling. Everything from kitchen utensils to kids’ clothes is on offer, along with fresh produce, ceramics, jewellery and the ubiquitous fake handbags and clothes. Barter hard.

Good for age: 13+

Temple of Apollo at Didyma

  • Didim, Aegean Region, Turkey

Columns amid the ruins of an ancient temple of Apollo

Experience

The monumental Temple of Apollo is largely intact within its hem of tottering or fallen fluted columns. Home to one of the great oracles of the ancient world, the temple stood for hundreds of years without ever being completed, as the mason’s marks on uncarved stonework reveal.

Good for age: 18+

Bodrum Amphitheatre

  • Bodrum, Aegean Region, Turkey

Aerial view of the theatre from the ancient city of Halicarnassus, which is still in use today

Experience

A restored Roman amphitheatre that can seat up to 13,000, the site dates back to the 4th century BC. Some of the names of those who bought seats can still be seen carved into the stonework.

Good for age: 18+

Knidos

  • Datca, Aegean Region, Turkey

Ancient ruins at sunset

Experience

Occupying a spectacular position at the tip of the Datca Peninsula, with its harbours still used by visiting gulets, Knidos is in the midst of an extensive archaeological restoration. Works continue along the ancient stoa, the theatre and the numerous temples.

Good for age: 18+

Turgutreis Market

  • Turgutreis, Aegean Region, Turkey

Market stall with bags filled with spices for sale

Experience

This open-air market is the largest on the Bodrum peninsula, held every Saturday, is packed with stalls selling local produce – olives, cheese, meze, seasonal fruits and vegetables – plus the usual fare of textiles and crafts.

Good for age: 18+

Duration: One day

When: Saturday

Freq: weekly

Bodrum Market

  • Bodrum, Aegean Region, Turkey

People shopping at a covered market with food stalls

Experience

Bodrum’s weekly market, held in the Pazar next to Dolmus station, takes place on Tuesday (for textiles) and Friday (fruits and vegetables). The textile market is famous throughout the region; alongside the beautiful cottons and linens, there are also kilims (carpets), clothing and kitchenware on sale.

Good for age: 13+

Bodrum Hamam

  • Bodrum, Aegean Region, Turkey

Marble sink with metal jug in a traditional Turkish bath

Experience

Go for the full package – hamam, sauna, exfoliation, oil massage and water massage at this simple hammam opposite Bodrum’s bus station.

Adult price: £1

Good for age: 18+

Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archaeology

  • Bodrum, Aegean Region, Turkey

Ruins of an ancient ship set up in a museum exhibit

Experience

Interesting, small museums with exhibits including jewellery and artefacts from underwater necropolis and the skeletons of historic vessels. It’s housed in the Castle of St. Peter, a 15th-century fortress situated on a rocky peninsula between two sheltered bays.

Adult price: £1

Good for age: 18+