Beaches, boutique hotels, trendy restaurants, and clubs – this is the Bodrum – summer destination in southwestern Turkey at the northern end of the Gulf of Kerme of the Aegean Sea. More than any other Turkish seaside getaway, it has an enigmatic elegance that pervades it, from the town’s crowning castle and glittering marina to its flower-filled cafes and white-plastered backstreets. Even in the most hectic days of high summer, you can still find little corners of serenity in the town. Urban planners have sought to preserve Bodrum’s essential Aegean character, which was influenced by the Cretans who moved here during the population exchange of the 1920s. Today, laws restrict buildings’ heights, and the whitewashed houses with bright-blue trim evoke a lost era. Bodrum was built on the ruins of ancient Halicarnassus by the Hospitallers, a Crusading order, who occupied the site in 1402. The spectacular Castle of St. Peter (🎫 150 TRY) remained a Christian stronghold until the Ottoman sultan Süleyman I the Magnificent captured it in 1522.

Parking location – Bodrum: 37.055127N 28.321224E