A week in the Life of a Holidaymaker in Bodrum;

A week in the Life of a Holidaymaker in Bodrum;

by Annette Ertan
From Bodrumlife Previous Issue 2005

It is really hard work. Being on holiday, that is. The decisions! The compromises one has to make - my husband wants to do everything active, the kids want to spend the whole time in the pool, and I want to shop, eat well, and try a couple of these Turkish wines, and read my ten books I brought with me!
If that’s not enough, our tour representative comes around with a whole list of suggestions for what we can do in Bodrum!

So you ask what did we do in our week? I shall tell you and also what we shall do next time we come- because we found we like it here, and there is a lot more to do that we simply haven’t had time for on this visit.

We arrived on Saturday evening, so we had time to go for an evening walk along the front at Bodrum – all the way – from the Marina and its nice shops to Halikarnas Disco! We looked at all the wonderful wooden boats, and then found the shopping / bar street. What a paradise- for shopping. The kids were happy in a music/games shop while I picked out a little bit of gold next door! The choice of jewellery shops was incredible all along the street, and I love the way they weigh the item for you. We watched a man making the glass beads against the ‘evil eye’, and then found a place to eat right on the beach looking at the Crusader Castle. We decided to go there next day after an early night.

What a nice surprise- the kids loved the castle and all its displays, and the husband started dreaming about diving and being a great explorer after all the objects we saw in the shipwreck halls. We spent a long time in there, and went back to the hotel pool for a swim and a read. While we were there, the dive company came around and my husband tried the free try-dive in the pool. He loved it! So the whole family booked for a day on a dive-boat for the next day.

The dive-boat day was a huge success. Husband has now decided on coming back for another holiday and do his Dive course, and our oldest girl might do it with him as she will be old enough next year. The divers were so nice to the kids- explaining all the equipment to them and let them see the breathing underwater while snorkelling beside the diver. I got some swimming and snorkelling done too and even got a chapter read on my book, before it was photo time and farewell with the whole crew!

Tuesday in Bodrum is market day, so the whole family went shopping. It seemed that the whole of Bodrum was there too, amongst all the materials, towels, t-shirts, bags, jeans. We all came away with something each and more. Not all the gift shopping has been done, but we learnt a bit of bargaining didn’t hurt! We had started early to finish by lunch-time so after dropping off all our shopping at the hotel we got our beach gear together and went to one of the peninsula beaches – Bitez. The kids and I liked the beach and the swimming, and husband found a windsurf school further along the beach where he spent a couple of hours trying to brush up his windsurfing skills. We had dinner in one of the restaurants along the beach, trying the big kebabs and fresh food. It was an excellent meal.

We had booked with our tour company for a day out on Wednesday – I would have liked to go to Ephesus, but we decided that we would do the 2-day Ephesus-Pamukkale tour next year when we will have two weeks. We chose instead, to go to Dalyan where the turtles nest on the beach. The trip down in the bus was so interesting that I couldn’t doze as I liked seeing all the different scenery on the way down. It was very beautiful. The day was another success for this active family, as the boat trip through the river canals, the sulphur-mud baths, and seeing that huge beach, plus all the things the guide told us, kept everyone entertained for the day. We slept on the bus coming back!

After our big day out, we had a quiet morning at the hotel. Over lunch we decided that as we have only another day left we would explore one of the other villages on the Peninsula, so we got on the dolmus to Gumusluk. We had a lovely walk around the edge of the harbour and up through the old laneways between the fields of mandarin orchards and vegetable patches. Then we waded over to the little island they call Rabbit Island. The rabbits didn’t seem to be around but we climbed around all the old ruins imagining we were Romans! Husband spotted the canoes on the beach, so he and our son went off paddling while we ‘girls’ settled down on the sun beds.
We stayed late out there for a beautiful fish dinner in one of the waterside restaurants, and watched the sunset over the sea.

On Friday we took the boat trip our tour rep had told us about. That trip took us out of Bodrum harbour to Black Island where we stopped in a couple of bays, had lunch on board, then went into some more bays. I lost count as I was having my lazy day. I read my book (only on the second!) and the rest of the family swam and snorkelled, so we all had a perfect last day!
I had hoped to go and try a Turkish Bath, but instead we had a night wandering the Bodrum streets again. It was so busy, but relaxed at the same time. It seems much better to shop at night, when there is such a lively atmosphere. We shopped for last presents, and got something for ourselves as well- including an extra bag to take everything home in! Handbags and t-shirts, cushion covers, and glasses, a leather coat and a new pair of shoes all take up luggage room!

It was very sad to leave our favourite waiters at the hotel, they were so good to the kids, in fact everyone has been very nice and friendly. That was our week, a very short holiday, but we realised that there is so much more to do, so we are booking to come back next year – I can’t wait!