Bodrum, sometimes described as Ibiza meets St Tropez, was once the ancient city of Halicarnassus. It is the closest town to Torba being only 8km south on the southern coast of the peninsula.
Bodrum became one of Turkey’s earliest tourist resorts due to its excellent climate, beautiful coastline and plethora of proximate sites of historical importance and natural beauty. Unlike many other Turkish resorts, however, it has shunned high rise development and thus retains its charm. Although Bodrum has now developed into a year round thriving commercial centre, its role as a major tourist attraction has not diminished. The iconic Castle of St Peter, sitting between Salmakis and Kumbahçe bays is a wonderfully uplifting sight which greets the visitor from whichever direction Bodrum is approached. The castle is the focal point of the town and heart of the tourist area. From here attractive streets spread out to the west and east.
To the west, the road hugs the waters edge until it reaches the harbour and marina beyond and is lined by moored boats, traditional gülets and yachts. On the land side, restaurants and bars prevail. Some of these reflect a traditional Turkish way of life, others reflect modern Turkey and are stylish and sophisticated.
To the east of the castle, lies a maze of little alleyways – some vine covered – into which are crammed shops, mainly aimed at tourists, and yet more bars and restaurants. Most open out onto the beach so you can eat and drink in a wonderfully romantic atmosphere with the sea lapping at your feet. As the eastern beach road meanders closer to its end at the famous Halikarnas Night Club, you will find some of the noisier bars. If these are not to your taste, do press on to Mavi, the oldest bar in Bodrum, a quaint little establishment in a 150 year old waterside house playing live folk music which can transport you back decades.
Aside from the shops, bars and restaurants the more cerebral of you will appreciate Bodrum’s ancient sights and artefacts. Many of these centre on the castle which also incorporates the Museum of Underwater Archaeology, however there is also the Mausoleum, the Antik Teatro (amphi theatre) which hosts open air summer concerts overlooking the sea, and the Myndos Gate and remains of the ancient city walls.