After returning from my holiday in Turkey, it would be fair to say that I’m suffering from a bad case of the post-holiday blues. I stayed in Marmaris, well known for being a popular, vibrant holiday destination and loved every minute of it. The Aegean coast enjoys sweltering heat at the best of times, but with day time temperatures rarely going below 40 degrees all week it was a stark contrast to the unsettled weather the UK has been experiencing in recent weeks. The week flew by, so fitting everything in proved difficult; here are my highlights of the week to give you some inspiration for your short break and help you make the most of it.
Make a splash with diving
One activity I can now cross off my ‘things to do before I die’ list is diving. It was an exhilarating experience that I would recommend to anyone. First timers started off diving to 5 meters, but in the afternoon there was an opportunity to dive deeper…for those who were braver than me. The waters in the vicinity were perfectly clear and it was like visiting an underwater world complete with numerous fish and rock formations. This was definitely an experience that will stay with me forever.
Explore the history on Cleopatra Island
For a more relaxing excursion, a visit to Cleopatra Island was a wise choice. This compact island was a short 20 minute boat ride from the coast and was named after Cleopatra herself as she and Marc Antony used to spend time there regularly. It’s surrounded by brilliant blue and green waters and is home to some of the most beautiful scenery I’ve ever seen. The island also has some great architecture such as the amphitheatre and ancient ruins, which were personal favourites of mine. The beach is perhaps the island’s biggest talking point, it’s made up of seashells and sand from theRed Sea, it is said that Cleopatra had it shipped over especially as the sand is perfectly spherical.
Relax and Unwind in Icmeler
I also found that the neighbouring town Icmeler was a must-visit. I thought it was much more tranquil and laid back than the hustle and bustle of Marmaris, so it was a good place to visit for a nice change. Anyone looking for a slow-paced holiday would probably find that Icmeler suits them; you can visit the numerous cafés on the beach front to relax or meander through the town’s market and seemingly endless rows of shops. You can travel from Marmaris to Icmeler on the Dolmus bus for next to nothing, but I would highly recommend taking the taxi boat from the marina for the ultimate scenic route.
Soak up the culture on a Turkish Night
Anyone wanting to immerse themselves in Turkish culture should book a Turkish night. The majority of hotels in Turkey offer them, so there’s no harm in shopping around for a good deal. I enjoyed traditional food and drink while watching some impressive entertainment which varied from Turkish folk dancing to belly dancing. There was also a lot of audience participation, so don’t be afraid to get involved.
Cool Down on the Beach Front
Even though it can sometimes feel too hot to be doing too much exploring during the day, when early evening comes around a stroll down to the beach front is a great way too unwind. The front stretches for miles and there’s no end of restaurants where you can sample some delicious authentic cuisine and with many of them located right on the front, you can take in some breathtaking views as the sun sets. Furthermore, there are numerous bars with varying cocktail lists, making this the perfect destination for rounding off your day.
Are you planning on visiting Turkey this summer? Have you ever done any of these activities?