Yachting Paradises: Exploring Bodrum and Göcek along Turkey’s Coast

June 13, 2024

Bodrum and Göcek, two stunning spots along Turkey’s coast, each have their own charm. Bodrum blends modern luxury with yachts-friendly spots and services, all set against a backdrop of ancient history. Meanwhile, Göcek offers well-equipped marinas surrounded by natural beauty, providing a peaceful escape. Let’s explore these beautiful destinations and discover what makes each of them special.



Bodrum peninsula may be small, but its reputation is vast and ever-growing. As the most exclusive part of the Turkish Riviera, Bodrum boasts a thriving culinary scene, with two restaurants featured in the 2024 MICHELIN Guide: Kitchen at The Bodrum Edition Hotel in Yalıkavak and Maça Kızı in Göltürkbükü, known for its exceptional cuisine and celebrity visitors. Bodrum also offers a glimpse of exclusive beach clubs, traditional Turkish village life, historical ruins, and a burgeoning food and wine industry.


The Gulf of Gökova and Sedir Island

The Gulf of Gökova, also known as the Gulf of Kerme, is a long, narrow gulf of the Aegean Sea located between the Bodrum and Datça peninsulas in south-west Turkey with many spots where yachts can anchor.

Sedir Island, also known as Cleopatra Island, is a small island in the Gulf of Gökova. It is famous for its beach made from seashells, traditionally known as Cleopatra’s Beach. Legend has it that this organic sand comes from the Red Sea ships.

Sedir Island also called Cleopatra Island at the coast of Marmaris in Turkey. (Bodrum and Göcek area)

Etrim Village: A Glimpse of Authentic Bodrum

In the midst of Bodrum’s modern luxury, Etrim Village offers a look into its quieter past. A visit to Etrim reveals a way of life that existed before the region’s transformation. Here, residents still live a traditional nomadic lifestyle, weaving kilim carpets and following age-old pastoral traditions. Visitors can enjoy a meal made with local ingredients and learn about the region’s cultural heritage.

Halicarnassus and the Myndos Gate

Bodrum is home to the ruins of Halicarnassus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Built in the 4th century BC, its most famous landmark was the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus. Although destroyed by earthquakes in the 11th century, some stones were used in the construction of Bodrum Castle. The Myndos Gate, one of the city’s ancient entrances, remains partly intact, allowing visitors to explore the foundations of this historic site.

Hot air balloon flying over Saint Peter Castle (Bodrum castle) and marina in Bodrum, Turkey

Karnas Vineyards

Turkish viticulture is flourishing, and Karnas Vineyards, near Bodrum town, offers a comprehensive wine-tasting and dining experience. The vineyard’s zinfandel, the first planted in Turkey, and its award-winning syrah are highlights. Visitors can tour the cellars, learn about traditional wine-making methods, and purchase wines at the on-site shop.

Shopping in Türkbükü: Turkey’s St. Tropez

For retail therapy, head to Türkbükü, known as Turkey’s St. Tropez. This charming town features picturesque streets and shops selling homemade jewelry and souvenirs, alongside chic designer boutiques. After shopping, relax on the beach, where sun loungers and canopy tents line the wooden promenade, giving the area an air of exclusivity.



If you’re seeking an escape from the hustle and bustle of big city life, Göcek, is the perfect destination. This coastal town offers low houses surrounded by gardens, an azure sea, coves, mountains with pine forests, and a tranquil atmosphere. Göcek is also an international yachting center with seven first-class marinas and equipped areas for crew.

Historically known as Kalimce, Göcek has ancient ruins visible underwater in nearby bays. According to legend, it was here that Icarus made his famous flight. Göcek is renowned for its natural beauty, attracting sailors from Turkey and abroad. Its twelve islands create a natural harbor, often referred to as a “natural marina.” Göcek also boasts two beach clubs: D-Marine, with sand imported from the Arab Emirates, and Upper Deck Club, situated across the bay.

For those wondering what to do in Göcek, here are some highlights:


Yassica Island

Yassica Island, nestled within the Fethiye Bay, offers a perfect retreat for those seeking tranquility and adventure alike. Comprising several small and larger islands, it’s a haven for water sports enthusiasts. In the bay of Gocek, as it is a National Park and protected area, jet skis, etc are not allowed. But if you go to the East side of the islands and back in the open sea, you can use all watersport as much as you like!

Blanketed by lush pine and olive trees, the islands provide a picturesque backdrop for hiking and exploration. One of the islands even features a charming small pond, adding to its natural allure.

Göcek Yassıca Islands shot with drone from above Göcek, Muğla - Turkey

Cleopatra’s Baths Bay

Cleopatra’s Baths Bay is a unique blend of historic ruins, sunken baths, and breathtaking blue and green vistas. Legend has it that during Queen Cleopatra’s visit to the Mediterranean, her companions presented her with a bath in this very bay. They discovered a natural source of hot water that was believed to have healing properties for skin ailments and contributed to Cleopatra’s famous beauty. In the tranquil hours of dawn, watch the sand stir at the bottom of the submerged ruins, a telltale sign of the lingering warmth of the thermal waters below. Cleopatra’s Baths Bay stands as a testament to both ancient luxury and the enduring appeal of nature’s gifts.

Ancient Ruins of Arymaxa

History enthusiasts should visit the ancient ruins of Arymaxa, located in the hills overlooking Göcek. This archaeological site features ruins of a theater, Roman baths, and rock-cut tombs, offering a glimpse into the past. The views from the hilltop are stunning, providing a vantage point to appreciate Göcek’s beauty and surrounding landscapes.

Dalyan River

A short drive from Göcek, the town of Dalyan is known for its natural wonders. The emerald green Dalyan River winds from scenic Köyceğiz Lake to the sea. The river passes ancient ruins, mud baths, and natural beauty spots. You can visit also Iztuzu Beach, where the river meets the sea. The beach is also popular for its turtle population.

Best touristic destination of Turkey. River of Dalyan Village through the Iztuzu Beach.


In short, Bodrum and Göcek are both beautiful yachting destinations along Turkey’s coast. Whether exploring authentic spots as Etrim Village or relaxing on Yassica Island, these destinations promise unforgettable experiences on Turkey’s southwestern shores.

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