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Marmaris

Country: Republic of Turkey

Area: Marmaris

Coordinates: 36°51′N 28°16′E

Mayor: Muhammet Ali Acar

Population: 83 thousand people

Time zone: EET (UTC +2), summer EEST (UTC +3)

Area code: +90 252

Postal code: 48700

Licence plate: 48

Website: http://www.marmaris.bel.tr/

 

Marmaris is a port town and tourist resort on the Mediterranean coast, located in Mugla Province, southwest Turkey, along the shoreline of the Turkish Riviera.

Marmaris' main source of income is tourism. Little is left of the sleepy fishing village that Marmaris was just a few decades ago, after a construction boom in the 1980s. Marmaris still retains its charm due to its exceptional location between two intersecting sets of mountains by the sea. As of 2010, the town's population was 30,957, peaking at around 300,000 to 400,000 people during the tourism season. Marmaris' nightlife rivals anything on the Turkish coast.

It is also a centre for sailing and diving, possessing two major and several smaller marinas. It is a popular wintering location for hundreds of cruising boaters, being also served by the nearby Dalaman Airport.

Climate

Marmaris has a hot-summer Mediterranean climate characterised by a hot and humid summer and cool, rainy winter. Showers and rain are very unlikely between May and October.

Summers are hot and humid, and temperatures are especially high during the heat waves in July and August. October is still warm and bright, though with spells of rain, and many tourists prefer to visit in the early autumn, especially in September, because the temperatures are not as hot.

Winters are mild and wet. Winter is the rainy season, with major precipitation falling after November. The annual rainfall can reach to 1,232.7 millimetres the rainfall is concentrated during scattered days in winter falling in heavy cloudbursts which cause flash floods sometimes in flood prone areas.

History

Although it is not certain when Marmaris was founded, in the 6th century BC the site was known as Physkos and considered part of Caria.

According to the historian Herodotus, there had been a castle on the site since 3000 BC. In 334 BC, Caria was invaded by Alexander the Great and the castle of Physkos was besieged. The 600 inhabitants of the town realised that they had no chance against the invading army and burned their valuables in the castle before escaping to the hills with their women and children. The invaders, well aware of the strategic value of the castle, repaired the destroyed sections to house a few hundred soldiers before the main army returned home.

The town became known as Marmaris during the period of the Beylik of Mentese; the name derives from the Turkish word mermer and Greek marmaron in reference to the rich deposits of marble in the region, and the prominent role of the town's port in marble trade.

The next important event regarding the history of Marmaris took place in the mid-fifteenth century, when the Ottoman Empire began to rise as a result of the efforts of Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror, who succeeded in conquering and uniting under one banner the various tribes and kingdoms of Anatolia and the Balkans, together with Constantinople. Some of his greatest difficulties came from the Knights of St. John, who occupied the Dodecanese Islands in the Aegean Sea, at the vicinity of Marmaris. Based in Rhodes, the Knights had fought the Ottoman Turks for many years; they were able to withstand the onslaughts of Mehmed II until a succeeding and more powerful sultan came to the scene.

Marmaris Castle was rebuilt from scratch in 1522 by the Ottoman sultan Suleiman the Magnificent when he had set out for his conquest of Rhodes, during which Marmaris served as a base for the Ottoman Navy.

Lord Nelson and his entire fleet sheltered in the harbour of Marmaris in 1798, en route to Egypt to defeat Napoleon's armada during the Mediterranean campaign.

Since 1979, renovation work has been continuing at the castle, in order to restore it back to its original condition. Under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture, the castle was converted into a museum. There are seven galleries, of which the largest is being used as an exhibition hall and the courtyard is decorated with seasonal flowers. Built at the same time as the castle in the bazaar, there is also a small Ottoman caravanserai built by Suleiman's mother Ayse Hafsa Sultan.

Nightlife

Marmaris is famous for its fantastic nightlife.

For pre partying drinks many small bars along the beachfront offer are perfect place to watch the warm sun set.There are selections of good clubs along the beachfront which play a variety of music and cater to different tastes. Turtle Bar is by far one of the best bars there, bar outside with nightclub inside, without the incredulous prices of Bar street.

For hardcore partiers Bar street is where the party's at. Located in the old town this street has over 100 bars and clubs ranging from rock bars to Club arena, a huge outdoor nightclub with foam parties. All are open to at least 4AM.Beware when drinking in Bar Street as prices are much higher (15-20TL for a spirit and mixer) than those along the beach front although entry to most clubs is free and there are periods when there are special offers available.

Tourism

There's plenty to do in Marmaris. Marmaris has a busy nightlife with a street devoted to dance music and the entire high tech clubbing scene. Bar Street is opposite the busy bazaar and will satisfy the most discerning clubbers with its huge outdoor dance venues and all of the latest tunes.

Marmaris has lots for families too. Great inexpensive boat excursions can take you out round the bay and to neighbouring towns like Icmeler and Turunc with all inclusive food and drinks all day for as little as 25 TL. Marmaris also has two water parks and local travel agents offer a range of trips to Dalyan, Fethiye, Pamukkale, Ephesus and other popular locations in Western Turkey. Another worthwhile trip is to Mugla, the regional capital which can be reached by frequent bus service from Marmaris Bus station for 12 TL. Journey time over the mountains is about 1 hour and is well worth the effort as Mugla is a real Western Turkish town not affected greatly by tourism.

The town of Marmaris is not just for the package holiday visitor as a trip to the harbour area will confirm. There you can see ocean going yachts costing $10 million and rub shoulders with those who can blow $1000 on a pair of sunglasses in the exclusive upmarket designer harbour shopping area.

Marmaris is primarily a resort that caters for British holidaymakers but recently has become popular with Russian and other Eastern European visitors.

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