Hands up if you’re ready for a holiday! Me me me, I am, I am. I’ve not been brave enough to book a 2021 holiday yet (it’s currently lockdown number 5465883745872575 in England and I’m legally prohibited from travelling much beyond my front door right now), but let me know if you’ve got something booked for this year in the comments below! If not, then I’m about to convince you as to why you should take your next holiday in Bodrum, Turkey:
It’s home to an Ancient Wonder of the World...
I’m a bit obsessed with Wonders of the World and so Bodrum was the perfect holiday destination for me. Bodrum (a city on the Turkish Riviera, a line of coastline to the south-west of Turkey) is home to the remains of the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The Mausoleum was built in 350 BC and featured a tomb which was 50 metres in height. Very little remains of the Mausoleum today, but visitors can still explore the grounds, along with the piles of marble and rubble, that once accommodated this remarkable tomb.
…but the historic sites don’t stop at the Mausoleum.
Beyond the Mausoleum, visitors can find two structures dating back to the 4th century: the beautifully restored Amphitheatre, as well as the Myndos Gate (which was built by King Mausolus as part of a 7-kilometre wall around the former city of Halicarnassus).
The foundations of Bodrum Castle may have also been started by Mausolus in the 4th century, but the complex as visitors see it today was completed in the 15th century. Dominating the Bodrum waterfront, the Castle is rich in history – having been taken over by the Ottoman Empire in 1523 – and offers fantastic panoramic views across the city.
It’s a cheaper alternative to the Greek Islands…
Bodrum is located on the Aegean Sea, like the majority of the Greek Islands. It takes only 45 minutes by boat from Bodrum to get to Kos, the closest Greek Island. Unsurprisingly, therefore, both Bodrum and the Greek Islands share the wonderful Mediterranean climate. Additionally, the proximity to Greece is evident throughout the Old Town of Bodrum, with many of its streets exhibiting typically Greek whitewashed walls, with blue windows and doors. You’ll also find the Greek ‘evil eye’ symbol making a regular appearance throughout this part of the city.
A trip to Bodrum, however, is likely to come at a fraction of the cost of a trip to a Greek Island. For example, visitors from the UK can bag an all inclusive, 7-night summer holiday (including flights) to a 5-star resort in Bodrum for under £300GBP.
…yet Bodrum still retains its own distinct character.
While Bodrum may be similar to the Greek Islands, it is by no means devoid of its own – undeniably Turkish – character. Hammam Baths are aplenty in Bodrum (and I recommend Bitez Hamam), while visitors will regularly hear the city’s mosques emitting the call to prayer. Bodrum is also a great destination for retail therapy. The city’s Bazaar has a huge range of wares, including ceramics, textiles and jewellery. Bodrum is also incredibly popular for shoppers in the market for ‘genuine fakes’ of branded handbags, shoes and clothing – however, as I work in intellectual property, I must add that I do not encourage this!
It has a vibrant nightlife and dining scene…
Bodrum caters to all tastes in terms of dining and nightlife. In Bodrum, visitors can eat, drink and dance at sophisticated, upmarket spots such as Maçakizi, while young partygoers might be more inclined to try Club X Bar. The city also has a vast number of laidback fish restaurants, including the lovely Orfoz Restaurant.
…and the Marina is a great place for entertainment.
The city was once a fishing village and so it is unsurprising that the sea is at the heart of everything in Bodrum. Visitors can embark upon a number of different day trips and yacht excursions from the marina.
Above all, Bodrum, Turkey, is a stunning coastal location, offering activities suitable for all tastes. It is the perfect place for a relaxing (and inexpensive) sunshine holiday and – after the year that we’ve had – I think we could all really do with a trip like this.