Datça Peninsula straddles two sunny seas, with its northern coast looking out towards the Aegean, and its southern coast out to the Mediterranean. The last stretch of Turkey’s Turquoise Coast is full of wildflower-covered hills, jagged coastal cliffs, and golden beaches. The peninsula is a popular stop when sailing from Bodrum or Marmaris.
Dozens of beaches and snorkeling spots dot the Datça Peninsula, while inland, travelers may enjoy landlubbing pursuits like hiking through pine forests and orange groves, touring a traditional olive mill, browsing weekly markets, and exploring the ancient city of Knidos, a sprawling archaeological site best known for its timeworn sundial and statue of Aphrodite dating back to 4th century BC.
Travelers may explore the Datça Peninsula as part of a full-day or multi-day luxury cruise from Bodrum, stopping off to swim or hike along the way, exploring the Byzantine ruins at Kisebuku, and relaxing in peaceful fishing villages like Cokertme and Karacasogut. Some cruises stop at the sandy beaches, pine-covered headlands and sun-kissed islands of the Gulf of Gökova, the ancient city of Kaunos, or the white-shell beach of Cleopatra’s Island. Or explore the area in a 4x4 Jeep.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Suitable for art lovers of all ages.
- On tours, children must be accompanied by an adult.
- Tours are wheelchair and stroller accessible.
- Remember swimwear, sun protection, and water for hydration.
How to Get There
Datça Peninsula lies on Turkey’s southwest coast between the Aegean and Mediterranean seas. The most popular way to reach the peninsula is through Bodrum and taking a cruise from there. Otherwise, fly from Istanbul to Dalaman (which is just over an hour flight), rent a car and drive to the peninsula; travel times vary according to the destination.
When to Get There
Datça Peninsula’s high season is July and August. Catch temperate weather and beat the crowds by visiting Marmaris late or early fall. Come in May for the Marmaris Maritime and Spring Festival celebrated with yacht races and street performances, or for the larger International Marmaris Yacht Festival late in the month. In June/July the Marmaris Cinema Festival takes over, and in October Marmaris hosts yet another maritime festival, the International Race Week.
The Bozburun Peninsula is a tiny mountainous peninsula on the larger Datça Peninsula, jutting out of its southern coast into the Mediterranean Sea. Popular for its sleepy sandy beaches, ancient cities, and lively nightlife, Bozburun is easily explored on a Jeep safari or as a stop during a yacht cruise. Go to the waterfalls and a carpet weavers association in the village of Turgut, or have a meal in the chic Selimiye.