History and Culture


History experts tell us the first records of settlement on the Bodrum Peninsula were the god-worshipping Carians, but the area is more famous for the Dorain Greeks that inhabited the area from the 7th century BC. The Dorians named the area Halicarnassus and they accepted the son of Poseidon called Anthes as the founder. 

However, it was under the rule of Persian king, Mausolos that the area really flourished. He built houses for citizens, streets were paved, lavish statues and temples appeared throughout the town. In 353BC, he died leaving Artemesia his throne. She was not just his successor but also his wife and sister.  Her dream was to build a magnificent tomb overlooking Halicarnassus that would hold both her and her husband's bodies. 
She was not to see the finished result though, as she died just two years later. Workman carried on with the project and in 350BC, the tomb was finished. Called the Mausoleum, it is one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. 

For 16 years, the area led a relatively quiet existence before they faced the wrath of Alexander the great when he invaded in 334BC. Crusader knights were to have the honour though because in 1402, they built the most famous landmark of the Aegean coast, Bodrum castle that stills stands today.

One hundred and twenty years later, Bodrum became part of the Ottoman Empire that ruled many countries and lands across the world. In 1921, the Ottoman Empire finished and Bodrum became part of the Turkish Republic two years later. 


  • Greek island of Kos is just 3 miles away from Bodrum.
  • The main income of the town is yachting and tourism. 
  • The museum located by the castle displays two ships. Shipwrecked over 900 years ago, reconstruction efforts now make them the highlight of the museum. 
  • The population of Bodrum in 2009 was just over 118, 000 a huge leap from the population of 2000, which was 32,000. 
  • Bodrum is the tourism hub of Aegean Coast.
  • Famous people that have been to Bodrum include Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas, Beyoncé and Jay Z. 
  • Bodrum is twinned with the following cities in other countries; Aalborg in Denmark, Pleven and Haskovo in Bulgaria and Guidan Roumji in Niger.
  • The Zeki Muren art museum in Bodrum is dedicated to a famous Turkish singer, composer and artist who died in 1996. Originally, from Bursa, he made Bodrum his lifelong home.