Marmaris Walking Tour: Castle and Museum, Old Town, and Market
- Walking tour: Your guide shows you this resort town's stylish marina, its onion-domed mosque, and the narrow streets and restored buildings of the old quarter.
- Castle and museum: This 16th-century hilltop fortress has the best views in town and a museum filled with amphorae, figurines, ornaments, and historic finds.
- Free time: Visit a cafe, munch on some baklava, or browse the bustling bazaar for leather goods, natural sponges, sandals, and local blue glass beads called boncuk.
About this Marmaris tour
Tucked amid pine-scented hills, Marmaris boasts one of the world's largest natural harbors in a strategic spot where the Aegean and Mediterranean meet. It's easy to see why there's been a castle here for about 5,000 years. And why it's seen its share of action, commotion, and conflagration.
Alexander the Great invaded the town (then called Physkos) in 334 B.C. as part of his epic empire-building campaign. As his troops swarmed in, the townspeople realized they were no match so they set fire to all their belongings inside the castle and fled to the hills. Alexander the Great, military strategist that he was, recognized the castle's value, called in the smoke damage crew, and installed his army.
The castle got a facelift in 1552, when Sultan Suleyman the Magnificent rebuilt it as his military base. Here he assembled 200,000 troops and set off to expel European crusaders from the Eastern Mediterranean. Local legend claims Suleyman changed the town's name on his return from Rhodes; disliking his castle on first sight, he declared "Mimar as!" or "Hang the architect." (No one seems to know if the architect survived the sultan's wrath.)
British Admiral Nelson and his fleet sheltered in the castle's shadow in 1798 on their way to Egypt to defeat Napoleon. And during World War I, the castle was severely damaged by shelling from a French warship. But things quieted down later in the century, and the renovated castle opened with a museum in the '90s. Today, ironically, this spot in the charming old quarter is an oasis of calm amid a busy, sometimes boisterous resort town.
The eye is everywhere
For more than 3,000 years, artisans have shaped the blue Turkish boncuk, or "eye bead," from molten glass. This talisman holds an important place in Turkish popular culture because it's believed to bring protection and good luck. The bright beads are displayed in homes, offices, and cars and can be found everywhere souvenirs are sold. You'll see these boncuk as you roam the Marmaris bazaar. Or maybe they'll see you.
Arriving by cruise ship? A representative will meet you near the pier. Staying in hotel? Your guide will be waiting in the lobby. Make sure you specify the name of your cruise ship or hotel at check out. At the meeting time, look for our logo sign. Please bring a printed copy of your voucher. If you are arriving at Dalyan Airport Domestic Terminal, pick-up will be at Baggage Claim. If arriving by International Arrivals, meet outside of Customs. Call the operator at the meeting point.
Please dress conservatively.
As in many cities, keep your wallet or purse secured and leave the bling behind. Flat shoes make walking on cobblestones much easier.
Due to the nature of this tour, it is not recommend for travelers using walkers or wheelchairs. Participants must be able to walk approximately 2 miles over uneven and cobblestone surfaces with inclines and 100+ steps.
Cultural, Scenic, Shopping, Walking Tour
English, German, Spanish, French, Italian
Tour Participation Requirements
This experience is rated strenuous. Travelers must consider their physical fitness level and medical history when determining whether this tour is appropriate. Travelers with pre-existing neck, back, knee and/or shoulder injuries, cardiac conditions, asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, other heart or respiratory conditions or any other medical condition must take particular caution when selecting a tour categorized as "strenuous". If you have concerns, you must consult with your personal physician before engaging in any activity that may be too strenuous for you.
Suitable for all ages.
Special Medical Restriction
This tour is not recommended for travelers with walking difficulties or who cannot manage steps. Watch your step at all times. You must be aware of your physical fitness, limitations, and understand this activity is rated strenuous.
Full refunds issued for cancellations made 7 full days prior to the date and time of requested services. Cancellations made within the 7-day and 72-hour window will receive a 50% refund of purchase total. Purchases are non-refundable inside of 72 hours.
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