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Things To Do In Marmaris
Summer is upon us once more, and you might be starting to think about where you can travel to over the coming months. Pandemic-allowing, Turkey looks set to be a popular spot, and with so many beautiful resorts to choose from, it’s not hard to see why.
One of those resorts is Marmaris.
Located on what is known as the Turquoise Coast, Marmaris is lapped by the beautiful blue of the Aegean. There is a lot to see and do around this part of the country, although when the heat is on (and trust me, it’s hot during the summer), you’ll probably just want to chill out around the pool or lay on the beach! That’s perfectly fine, but it’s well worth knowing what else you can do, so you can genuinely say that you’ve seen the best of this beautiful part of the country.
Marmaris and Icmeler run into one another, and they’re less than 10 minutes apart. For that reason, Icmeler is often referred to as Marmaris because it’s much smaller; however, it’s worth pointing out that they are two different resorts if we are being technical! During your stay, zig-zag between the two because Icmeler is so beautiful and definitely worth more than one visit.
When To Go To Marmaris
Okay, first things first. Let’s address the weather because depending upon when you’re visiting; this can severely affect your ability to get out and do a lot! It is possible to visit Marmaris at any time of year, but most hotels, bars, and restaurants are closed during the winter months (between November and early April). However, things start to open up from early April, and you’ll find that the town becomes progressively busier from there. From June to September, Marmaris and neighboring Icmeler are very busy indeed.
During the peak of summer, it’s not unusual for temperatures to hit 40 degrees. Evenings can also be sweltering, so you will need air conditioning – a fan just won’t cut it! If you want to head out and really explore, and you’re not a fan of laying on a beach much of the time, then you will probably be better visiting in May or June and September to October. During those months, temperatures are still hot but a little more bearable!
What To See & Do
Marmaris Long Beach
Firstly, you can lay on the beach as much as you want and it’s a very long beach, literally known as Long Beach, so you’ll have plenty of space! Hotels, bars, and restaurants line the beachfront, and as long as you buy a drink or something to eat, you can have a free sun-lounger and umbrella all day long.
There is a free part of the beach further up towards the town center, although there are no umbrellas or sun-loungers, and it’s more of a throw your towel down kind of deal!
If you love an Insta-worthy snap, be sure to head to Marmaris Castle and check out the fantastic views over the mountains, all the way over to Icmeler and beyond. There is also a museum that explains the history of Marmaris and shows you a few of the artifacts found on site. The castle is very well preserved and sits above Bar Street in Marmaris Old Town.
The good news is that it’s very cheap to get inside, at less than 10 lire per person – bargain!
Marmaris beach is excellent, but personally, I think Icmeler Beach is much prettier. It’s undeniably wider and sandier too. If you’re visiting with children, Icmeler beach is a better spot because there’s no main road behind it and there is more space to run.
The dolmus bus will get you to Icmeler from Marmaris in around 20 minutes; it takes that long because it constantly stops along the road to pick people up and drop them off! It’s very cheap, at around 5 lira per person, and runs every 10 minutes in both directions. You can also get a taxi, which will cost you anywhere between 30 to 50 lira, depending upon where you’re getting the taxi from.
Both Icmeler and Marmaris beaches have watersports to enjoy, such as parasailing, banana boats, flying fish, and jet skis.
Located on Marmaris beachfront, you’ll find the fun-filled Atlantis Waterpark. This is a great day out for all the family and is full of slides, rides, splashing, and general fun. There is a restaurant on-site and plenty of room for sunbathing. Alternatively, head to Aqua Dream Waterpark, which is located halfway up the mountain overlooking Marmaris. This has more slides and is a little quieter than Atlantis. The views are also pretty special!
If you love shopping and you enjoy bargains, be sure to head to the bazaar in the center of Marmaris. You will need to haggle, and you can expect to be encouraged to go into every single shop in this closed bazaar. However, it’s a great break from the sun, and you’ll also get some great bargains to take home with you.
Marmaris National Park
For those who like to be more active, grab your comfortable shoes and head to Marmaris National Park. This shady walking trail takes you up the hills and through the trees, with stunning views to boot. It’s worth mentioning that there are no toilets and nowhere to get a drink, so make sure that you’ve been before you go and that you take some water with you!
There is also a lookout point where you can see right over Marmaris – make sure your camera is charged for that one as it’s pretty special.
The Old Town is located below the castle and just to one side of Bar Street. The quaint, cobbled, and winding lanes are full of brightly colored flowers and small boutique stores, as well as coffee shops and tea houses. However, as you head to one side, you’ll find the aforementioned Bar Street, which may be quiet in the daytime but certainly isn’t at night – this is where Marmaris’ nightclubs are located.
As you walk through Bar Street and out the other side, you’ll reach the marina, which is an excellent place for a walk and a coffee stop. Check out the huge yachts moored up.
The small bays around Marmaris are definitely worth a visit, and the best way to see them is via a boat trip. There are several options here – if you want to go for a day with the kids, then check out the pirate boat, which is literally a ship with huge sails and has all kinds of entertainment on it. If that’s not your deal, there are many lazy day wooden boat trips that serve drinks and lunch throughout the day and take you all around the bays with several swim stops along the way. Most trips also stop for an hour in Turunc, a small town just beyond Icmeler, along the coast.
A relatively recent addition is the glass-bottomed boat trip. This is a very modern and large boat that has a huge glass walkthrough tunnel underneath. There are several stops along the way, including a shipwreck.
One thing that many people are surprised at when they visit Turkey is just how green it is, even during the hottest months of the summer. The mountains and villages around Marmaris are so beautiful, and the best way to visit them while having some fun along the way is to book a jeep safari trip.
There is usually a fleet of jeeps that head out every single day during the peak months, and with around eight people in each, you bump along dirt tracks and regular roads, checking out the fantastic scenery and stopping at places of note along the way. Jesus Beach is a popular spot; a large sandbank leads out into the sea, allowing you to almost walk on water – hence the name!
You’ll also stop for lunch in a traditional village while heading back. One point to remember – there is often a water fight between the jeeps at some point during the day, so if you’re asked if you want to rent a Super-soaker, say ‘yes’ and defend yourself!
Trip To Rhodes
You don’t have to stay in Marmaris for your entire trip, and if you want to get out and explore, why not explore another country too? Yes, you can head to Rhodes for the day via boat. It’s a long day, and sometimes the sea can be a little choppy, but it’s a fun day out. The boat takes around 1.5 hours, and you have the whole day to explore Rhodes Town before venturing back around 4 pm.
Excursion desks around Marmaris sell the trip, but you can also head to the port office on the marina and book your tickets directly.
This trip is a great way to confuse your friends and family when you tag yourself in on Facebook or Instagram – “but I thought you’d gone to Turkey?”
Coastal Walk Between Marmaris & Icmeler
If you want to do something a little active, but you don’t want to venture too far, why not wear some comfortable shoes and head off on a shady walk? There is a direct path right along the coast between Marmaris and Icmeler, and it’s super-scenic.
Some seriously posh hotels along this route, but their beaches and restaurants are reserved for guests only. For that reason, be sure to take some water with you, as it does take around an hour to complete the walk. Remember your camera!
How To Get To Marmaris
The easiest way to reach Marmaris is to fly directly to Dalaman Airport and transfer from there. Dalaman is open for direct flights during the entire summer season and connects to most European cities. Outside of you’ll, you’ll need to fly to Istanbul and then take a domestic flight to Dalaman, which takes about 1 hour.
The transfer from the airport to Marmaris varies depending on the method you choose. If you hire a car and you’ll, you’ll get there between 1 hour 15 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes. If you opt for a private transfer, i.e., only you in you’ll, you’ll get there in 1 hour 30 minutes. If you choose a shuttle you’re, you’re looking at anything between 2-3 hours. The reason is that the shuttle has to wait for several passengers before it can leave, and that can often take a while with luggage and people deciding to check out duty-Free. In addition, the shuttle stops at a service station along the way for around 15 minutes. The shuttle is cheaper, but it’s certainly the long way!
The other alternative is to take the Havas bus, which costs around 20 lira and leaves the airport according to the domestic flight schedule. The bus takes 1 hour 30 minutes and will drop you at Marmaris Otogar (bus station). From there you can jump in a taxi to your hotel.
Where To Stay
There are countless hotels, ranging from apartments to upmarket 5 star options with spas. However, the more important thing to think about is the whereabouts in Marmaris you choose to stay. Marmaris has a few neighborhoods, and you need to know where you will be from the beach and nightlife.
Siteler is the neighborhood closest to the mountain road out to Icmeler; you’ll find some large, all-inclusive hotels, shops, and many restaurants. It is an hour’s walk from Siteler down to the Old Town, but you can get the dolmus bus which runs every few minutes there and back. The beach runs the entire length of the beach; you’re not far from the beach by choosing to stay in Siteler.
Armutalan sits behind the main beach center, and there, you’re going to need to walk to the beach every day. Some hotels are further away that are not walkable during the summer. However, Armutalan itself has some fantastic restaurants and nightlife, so you might not need to venture too far during the evening.
The other prominent spot for hotels is the mountain road between Icmeler and Marmaris. If you choose to stay here, you won’t be able to walk anywhere, and you will need to get a bus or taxi. However, the hotels are designed to have everything you need. That is why they are 5-star impressive. The hotels also sit directly in-between the two resorts, so you get the best of both worlds.
Marmaris is a fantastic spot for a summer break – make sure it’s on your visit list!Share