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What to see and do in Marmaris – a guide to notable attractions and landmarks

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A Marmaris vacation includes exciting excursions, historical sites, cultural activities, and sandy beaches that will dazzle all visitors to Turkey. From families to couples, solo travelers, and group of carefree single friends, there are countless attractions in this coastal town for everyone. While numerous ancient sites keep history lovers occupied, water sports like sailing and scuba diving deliver thrilling experiences for the most adventurous travelers. 

Mehmet Gozen

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Marmaris (Aegean Coast)

Whether you’d rather have fun under the sun in Faros Beach or enjoy the cultural and traditional activities available in the resorts of Bozbuk, Selimiye and Datca, there is no shortage of things to see and do in Marmaris. Fall in love with Cleopatra’s Island, a destination enchanted with the magic of a legendary romance and unique silky smooth white sand. Sail along the Turkish Riviera around turquoise coves and explore ancient ruins, swim from hidden beaches and snorkel in remote locations. If you want to get lost in time, stroll around the remains of the magnificent ancient city of Knidos.


Cleopatra’s Island


The island was named after Cleopatra’s legendary love story. The myth tells that Cleopatra refused to step on any land other than Egypt, so Antony shipped a boat of sand from the Red Sea; then they swam across turquoise-emerald waters to reach what is today one of the most special beaches in the world. Each grain of this smooth white sand is a perfect sphere and that is what makes the island so extraordinary. Don’t miss your chance to swim and snorkel in the azure waters of the bay or visit the agora and amphitheater from the Hellenistic and Roman periods.


Turkish Riviera


Boasting small coastal villages, swimming bays and ancient ruins, the Turkish Riviera is the perfect escapade for adventurous travelers. A voyage along the rugged shoreline of the Turquoise Coast delivers scenic landscapes, historical sites, and hidden bays in its endless small coves, lush forests and streams. Get hooked on magical days spent snorkeling or scuba diving in remote locations or set sail from Marmaris harbor along the coastline to Izmir where you can go windsurfing. The Turkish Riviera is also home to the world-famous Blue Voyage, a week-long trip on gullet type schooners to ancient cities, harbors, tombs, and secluded beaches.


The Ruins of Knidos


West of Marmaris stands the breezy town of Datca, home to the ruins of the ancient Greek city of Knidos and one of the most picturesque historic attractions in the region. Sitting on a steep hilltop, the intriguing remains of Knidos are a fine testimony of Carian architecture silhouetted in an amphitheater looking out to the Aegean Sea and a necropolis. Travel back in time to the ancient city and step into a festival conceived to honor the gods of Apollo and Poseidon. As you wander around, your eyes will meet temples, a theatre and an agora which date back to the times of the Carian civilization.


Marmaris Castle and Museum


In the harbor area of the town center stands Marmaris Castle. Built around 1044, the castle played a significant part in history when the Ottoman ruler Suleyman used it as the assembly point for 200,000 troops on a mission to capture the Templar-held Rhodes. The castle is now a museum open to the public, which exhibits amphorae, glassware, coins and other finds, including Knidos and Hisaronu. Don’t miss the incredible views of the town and the bustling marina from the castle walls.