Marmaris is a major and attractive holiday resort located in a very beautiful scenery bay surrounded by mountains which dip into the blue waters and are covered with pine-tree forests. Local pine scented honey, called “Çambali”, is delicious and renown.
The ancient city of Physcus was an important stage on the Anatolian-Rhodes-Egypt trade route. Modern Marmaris developed around the Ottoman fortress built by Süleyman the Magnificent most probably after the Rhodian campain he led in 1522. At the entrance of the narrow street with steps leading up to the fortress, there is a caravanserai from the same period bearing an inscription dated 1545. The fortress was partially destroyed by cannon balls launched from a French warship in 1914 during the First World War. The fortress was restored between the years 1980-1990 and opened to the public as the Museum of Marmaris. The museum has an archaeological section displaying objects unearthed during the excavations at Hisarönü, Cnidus and Burgas near Datça, an ethnographical section and an art gallery. The old houses within the fortress have also all been restored.
The International Marmaris Yachting Festival takes place every year in May, the Marmaris Festival in June and the International Marmaris Yacht Race Festival in November.
Marmaris has a domestic and international airport.
Hydrofoils link Marmaris with Bodrum and the Greek island of Rhodes. Ferries link Marmaris with Venice.
Marmaris is truly the Jewel of the Turkish Riviera. It is Turkey’s most sophisticated and multi-faceted resort. Located where the Aegean sea meets the Mediterranean the beautiful bay is famous for its yachting and cosmopolitan atmosphere.
Marmaris is originally a Greek word meaning glittering and shining and this is a very apt description. Nowadays it offers abundant accommodation ranging from small pensions (guest houses) to luxurious 5 star hotels. Hundreds of restaurants, shops, tours, and other entertainment ensure that you will never be bored.
The beaches are not the greatest in the world but are more than adequate for children and adults alike. The sand is mostly black sand and a bit gritty. The beaches are not very wide and the top half is covered in sunbeds and umbrellas which you can rent for a nominal fee if the hotel/restaurant does not provide them. Many hotels have private beaches and some even ship in very good sand from other areas. The sea is warm, crystal clear and perfect for swimming. There are some fabulous beaches within half an hours drive, so if beaches are your thing, visit Cleopatra Island where the sand is said to be the best in the world.
The Island of Cedrae (Sedir Adasi): located at the bottom of Gökova Bay, the Island of Cedrae (the ancient city of Credrae) is a most interesting site both from the archaeological and geological point of view. The place can be reached by boat either from Gökova-Akyaka or from Çamliköy.
Numerous towers in regular ashlar, the temple of Apollo succeeded by a church, a well preserved theatre, an agora and the remains of the harbour can be seen on the island.
The sand on the shore of the island is worthy of notice. The carbonate in the spring waters flowing into the sea envelops the fine sand particles, forming what is called oolite or pisolite, according to their size. Within the region of Ula, the calcium carbonate accumulates on fine particles with each movement of the waves, and the intake by these particles of carbonate increases. This phenomenon is unique within the climatic zone around Turkey and in the surrounding seas.
It is said that Cleopatra owed her beauty to these sands. That is why the island is also called the Island of Cleopatra.