Turkey's biggest beach resort, Marmaris has a definite 'Riviera' feel to it. An elegant, palm-lined promenade weaves its way around the shoreline, while the marina plays host to a flotilla of gleaming white yachts.
• Ancient and natural history are served up in Dalyan. Sail along the river and you’ll pass the fourth-century Tombs of Kings. Head to the beach and you’ll sunbathe alongside endangered loggerhead turtles, which have been making their nests here for centuries.
• Discover a Turkish tradition with a visit to a hammam or Turkish bath. They’ve existed since Medieval times and normally have separate areas for men and women. When you get there, you’ll change into your swimwear before heading for the gobektasi, a heated stone where you’ll be treated to a body scrub that’ll leave you feeling really refreshed.
• Smother yourself in therapeutic mud in celebrity haunt Dalyan. You'll feel film star fabulous in no time.
SHORE EXCURSIONS► View all EXCURSIONS
You won’t want to forget your swimming gear, as you embark on a boat trip around Marmaris’ pretty coves. A bus will whisk you across to the town’s old docks, where you’ll board a traditional, twin-masted wooden boat – known locally as a gulet. From here, things can be as active or laid back as you like. You can bag a spot on the deck to catch a few rays, or leap into the striking blue water when the skipper drops anchor in a sheltered bay. The wave-free inlets are ideal for a gentle swim, and you’ll dry out in no time once you’ve clambered back aboard. Keep an eye out for the mysterious Blue Cave on your way back to the harbour, where a coach will be waiting to take you back to the ship.
If you've never been to a hammam, or Turkish bath, before, this is definitely one for you. Leaving Marmaris behind, you’ll head for one in the Armutalan area. These places have existed in Turkey since Medieval times and they’ve normally got separate baths for men and women. Leave your clothes in a cubicle and head, wrapped in a towel, to the gobektasi, a large heated stone, where you’ll be treated to a body scrub. Once you’ve had chance to cool down, you’ll return to the ship positively glowing, with plenty of time left to explore Marmaris.
You’ll get to see the best of Marmaris on this tour, starting with a short coach ride along the Mediterranean Coast to neighbouring Icmeler. Here, you can haggle your way around the mid-week market. There’s everything from spices to shoes on sale, and once you’ve finished shopping, you’ll make the return journey to Marmaris – stopping on the way to snap a few pictures of the Turkish Riviera. The rest of the tour’s a dot-to-dot of the port town’s most eye-catching landmarks. You’ll start at Marmaris Castle, a stone fortress that’s perched at the northern end of the bay. You can nose around the archaeological museum that’s hidden away inside, before heading to the historic Caravanserai. This centuries-old roadside inn’s now home to souvenir shops and cafés, so you can grab a snack before visiting one of the city’s grandest mosques. Just so you know, you’ll have to take your shoes off before entering the mosque, and women are asked to cover their head and shoulders.