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When people hear about Turkey, what comes to mind is Istanbul, Ankara, and Izmir, the three largest and most popular cities in the country. However, for people who like to try new things and off the beaten paths attractions, the seaport and tourist resort city of Marmaris is a gem. Lying on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, the city is located in Turkish Mugla Province, at the edge of a bay surrounded by rugged terrain.
Marmaris is a typical Mediterranean resort, with heavenly nature at unoccupied islands, pine-covered hills, and beautiful coves, plus there is so much to do and see.
Enjoy water activities
This Mediterranean resort has arrays of sea-related activities such as swimming, lounging on the beach, and sunbathing. The beaches of Marmaris are mostly empty most of the time, and you can have a private that other seaside resorts to offer.
You can also hire a boat and sail into the sea or parasail, wakeboard, or water ski.
Learn about Marmaris at the Castle and Archaeology Museum
The city of Marmaris was walled circa 3000 BCE by unknown people. However, the castle located on a small peninsula between the marina and the beach was constructed in the 1700s.
During World War I, the city was hit hard by the French warships, and the castle was renovated a few decades after the end of World War II.
Today, the castle is home to an archaeology museum featuring artifacts from the Stone Age period, and you can learn more about the history of the city and its people.
Visit Cleopatra Island
Nicknamed Cleopatra Island, Sedir Island is one of the top sites in Marmaris for tourists. It is believed that the legendary Cleopatra met her lover Marc Antony on this island, thus the name. For many years, the island has been idealized by its link to one of the most romantic stories in history.
Today, the island is a hotspot for jeep safaris and boat cruises from the mainland.
Explore the secluded beaches
Visiting beaches in Marmaris should be among the top things to do in the city. Marmaris beaches are golden and soft sand, lined with restaurants and shops.
You can walk or just relax and achieve that tan you have been craving for. The restaurants along the shores offer a chance for you to try out the best of Marmaris delicacies.
Rent a bike and explore the city
Cycling or motoring is one of the best ways to explore the city and its surrounding. Set aside a single day and rent a bike to tour the city and its countryside.
Marmaris has a bicycle lane stretching more than 5 kilometers, allowing bikers to safely ride around the city without worrying about traffic.
Renting a bike is easy, as there are plenty of shops that offer these services in the city. Beware of the prices though, and make sure you get quotes from different shops before paying.
Shop local products are Marmaris Grand Bazaar
Every city in Turkey has a grand bazaar because of the high demand for local products. The city of Marmaris also has its own large market where everything is sold.
Though it appears big, the Marmaris Grand Bazaar pales in comparison with Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar. Nevertheless, it has everything that will catch your attention from ceramics, the famous Turkish tea, Turkish lamps, kilim rugs, spices and scents, and others.
Visit the Turgut Waterfall
Usually referred to as the wonder of Marmaris, the Turgut Waterfall is a must-visit for anyone in the city. The fall of the waters has a calming effect and would go a long way to relieving you of stress and anxiety.
The waterfall is located just 45 minutes’ drive from the city.
Explore the Nimara Cave
Nimara Cave is one of the landmarks of Marmaris and which you should definitely visit. Dating back to the late 2nd century AD, there is plenty to discover in this treasure including its role in the culture and tradition of the people of Marmaris.
It is believed that religious practices and other rituals took place in the caves to honor the Goddess Leto, mother of the God Apollo.
Visit the Nimara Cave to connect to the historic past f the city and how it affected its future.
Check out the dancing fountains
This spectacle takes place at night and lasts for about half an hour. It is basically shoots of water synchronized to the colored lights and music. The show usually attracts a large crowd at night, in part because it is free.
During the day, the fountains revert to its normal functioning and feature a striking sculpture of mermaids.
Take a trip to Carian Rock Tombs
These are probably the most bizarre sites in Marmaris. The six rock tombs hang high on the bank of the Dalyan River, believed to have been carved between 4th and 2nd century BC.
To see the tombs, visitors are only allowed to glance from the water, while the guide explains to them the history of the site. This is meant to preserve the intricate carvings.
Chill at Marmaris 19 May Youth Square
This vibrant open space is situated next to Dolmus Station and is a place to watch some live performances or visit the shops and restaurants enclosing the square.
The community of Dalyan is located by the riverside of the same name. The community is known for offering visitors remarkable experiences through a wide range of activities such as riverboat cruises, a tour of preserved ruins, a visit to a turtle beach, and location of the best restaurants not only in Marmaris but entire Turkey.
Hike up the Marmaris Mountains
There are a number of private tour operators that including taking tourists on a hike up Marmaris Mountains through lush vegetation, rocky paths, beautiful waterfalls, and to the summit of the mountain.
Walk around Marmaris Marina
Take a leisure walk around the marina as you admire the ships docked along the wharf. The marina is also lined with numerous shops and a pleasant atmosphere that is ideal for relaxing.
Visit the Marmaris National Park
Under the shade of eucalyptus, pine, and sweet gum trees at the Marmaris National Park, you will find one of the most diverse flora and fauna in Turkey. Wild goats, wild boar, falcons, kestrels, eagles, hawks, and more call this park home.
To help you plan out your visit to Marmaris, we listed places to visit and other amazing activities to do in Marmaris, Turkey. We also listed some of the best travel and tour packages, as well as excellent flight deals and accommodation.
Searching for the best hotels, resorts, and affordable flights in the nearby Cities? Check out our list of affordable Marmaris hotels and resorts via Agoda, or you may also see available Airbnb properties in the city.