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Bodrum: Cote d’Azur Turkey

Warm sea and beaches marked with blue flags, historical sights and fun modern life, friendly people and delicious food … In Bodrum, as in Greece, there is everything

During the day, dazzling white houses shine in the sun above the bay. The lights of the fortress twinkle at night. St. Peter and trendy clubs and discos.

Sprawling on the Aegean coast Bodrum — Turkish analogue of the Cote d’Azur.

Wealthy Turks and non-poor foreigners come here to sail on yachts, walk through the boutiques and enjoy the enchanting nightlife.

The surrounding hills are dotted with new mansions, luxury hotels are located on the coast (for example, Rixos Premium considered one of the best in Turkey), and in a huge picturesque marina thousands of yachts are crowded: from prestigious expensive gulets to “boats” simpler, both private and those that can be rented.

But if you are not a fan of brilliance and chic, do not rush to think that such a place is not for you. In addition to the rich newly built villas in the vicinity Bodrum there are simple plaster, from the balconies of which there are incredible views of the Aegean Sea and the very nearby Greek islands.

Slightly to the side of the bustling center — and you can find calm beaches with dark golden — almost Cannes — sand and water that is transparent as glass. Even on the main streets of the city, modest restaurants and cafes lined up with noisy clubs, where you can order sweet tea in small tulip-visible glasses, drink juice from green pomegranates, eat a dozen meze snacks and lazily watch fishermen unload their afternoon catch from the boats …

Numerous meze snacks, without which lunch or dinner is unthinkable. It can be an eggplant salad with potatoes in yogurt or baba ganush — mashed grilled eggplants with tomatoes.

A variety of tortillas with fillings and Bёrek puff pastries. Sarma — rice with spices in grape leaves (the same snack that we used to call dolma, but here dolma is stuffed pepper).

Müjver — fried patties made of vegetables: grated zucchini, carrots and zucchini flowers, served with yogurt.

Gyuvech — a dish stewed in a pot.

For example, eggplants with beef and tomatoes or chicken with mushrooms, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, and bagels.

Kavurma — sliced ​​lamb served with vegetables and — attention! — without pita. If in pita — then you eat durum (durum and means «pita»).

In addition, for kavurmy, the meat is first cut, and then fried, and vice versa for the dyuryum.

Sutlach — rice pudding: perhaps the most common homemade dessert.

The rice is boiled first in water, then milk and sugar are added and boiled over low heat to the consistency of the pudding.

Bodrum and the truth is somewhat reminiscent of Greece: the same white houses on the neighboring Rhodes and Kosa, clinging to the hillsides; antique ruins; towering over the harbor of the times of the crusades; cuisine with Greek motifs.

And yet we are in Turkey.

And the point is not only that instead of crosses of Orthodox churches over the city — minarets.

Here is its own history and its own time, other people and destinies.

… Sitting at a small table behind the fish stalls, Guven cleans the fish.

If the buyer does not want to mess with the scales and giblets, the seller will certainly do it. The fish market works right in the harbor Bodrum, in the center.

The morning catch is sold from seven to eight hours and until ten, the evening one is brought in at four.

We are considering trays.

“This is a mys-mys! Shouts Guven, seeing where we stopped at the interested look. — And this is Mercan! Take it, it is the most delicious! ”Behind its unusual names there is a quite traditional assortment: striped fish myr-myr is a sea carp.

Mostly pink — the one that is “the most delicious” — pink dorada.

Want royal dorada — ask sellers chupra. Red mullet, sea bass, squid, mullet … Per kilogram from 10 to 30 lire. This is generally not cheap: the salary of a driver or a waiter is 600 lira, one who earns 1000–1200 lives good by local standards (1 lira is a little less than a dollar). “What to do,” Huven spreads his hands, “there are few fish in the Aegean Sea, that’s why it’s expensive.

Many hotels generally use imported — from the Black Sea.

And we always have our own, fresh. «

And the truth is, the fish left over in the evening can only be seen here on Sundays, when the fishermen do not go out to sea.

“You did the right thing to come here in the fall,” Huven suddenly changes the subject. “It’s still good in May and in the beginning of summer. And in July and August it’s too noisy and too arrogant — all these metropolitan singers and Swedish models …” Guven recalls the times when Bodrum was a city of sponge hunters and a haven of bohemians — artists, writers, hippies.

In the 70s there were not even roads in the district — if you wanted to build a house, everything had to be brought by sea. «Sometimes it seems to me that we are developing too fast. Just so it was built that we should lose the old charming one Bodrum… «But, fortunately, Guven is not quite right.

Along the harbor leads street Neyzen Tevfik — if you want to know which restaurants the Turks go to, go there. So, this historic street, you can neither demolish anything on it, nor rebuild it — you will not be allowed to move a stone in the fence either.

At the house 122, where the restaurant is located Cookshop, for example, there is not even a roof. But it only attracts visitors: it is better to book tables in advance.

Although, perhaps, the matter is not in the roof, but in the kitchen: they offer good international dishes in traditional Turkish dishes: first the meze, then the soup and the main dish.

For the real Turkish food is better to look into a place specializing in any one dish. Cörbaci — means «soup» (chorba is the soup).

Ismet Usta working on the street Tevfika since 1950, and not a single visitor for chorba — even with lentils, even with giblets, even with rice and noodles — has yet complained. Köfteci — “cutlet” or “meatball”, in general, a place that serves excellent Turkish kefta: meat meatballs with rice and spices, fried, baked, steamed … Kebapci — oh, this name is especially dear to everyone who loves grilled meat on a skewer: in kebabs it is always pleasantly browned, spicy and juicy. We simply could not deny ourselves the fragrant lamb kebabs and pide tortillas with meat filling and tomatoes (a sort of Turkish mini pizza).

And for fresh grilled and mezzanine, Guven sent us to Gemibasi — a fish restaurant, where a very pleasant view opens from the roof terrace.

However, traditional dishes can be found almost everywhere.

AT Sünger pizza pizza is served accordingly.

But we are not in Naples, but in Bodrum, and in the afternoon, apart from pizza, it is good to eat meze here — they are prepared by specially visiting female cooks.

The Turks themselves always order meze before they eat pizza.

In the Sunday market in the area Gumbet we seem to be the only tourists. The sellers, who are just setting the price tags, happily waving their hands to us and, quickly serving regular customers, demonstrate only this morning peeled peaches, cut off slices of juicy melons, give them rubbed in their hands, smell innumerable spices …

Fatiha quickly, with a waste gesture, turns the blanks for pellets to the guzleme — huge circles from thin unleavened dough. She is not afraid to tear — for how many years she has been making and selling them! “At home, fill with cheese and greens. Or minced meat with red pepper.

Or boiled potatoes with cheese. And if you want — take ready. «

On the counter, among other pastries — sprinkled with sesame bagels, puff pastry pies, bread — flaunt and ruddy envelopes to the guzleme. Fatih also has other blanks: tiny, for one bite, brownish manti — they are roasted, they will need to be boiled and served with yogurt; dry fried noodles …

Neighbor Fatiha slices cheese.

Appetizing circles of young brine (the same one that goes along with a slice of melon or watermelon as a snack to the brandy), squares of brynza, crumbly goat with black sesame … the most goat’s goats are: Bodrum a lot, and they graze in the wild — they are taken to the nearest uninhabited islands. A slice of cheese in the sample is served with an olive. “But it’s better to go to Zaire for the olives,” Fatiha laughs. “He has so much!”

“Total” — it is said correctly: interspersed with olives, which are sold both in 1.5-liter cans, and by weight, — olive oil, homemade olive soap, sauces, olive paste. Olives are of different colors and different salting: there are four kinds of black dried ones.

Olive plantations in Bodrum very large, and, as Zaire says, their oil is no worse than Greek oil.

AT Gumbet the market is open on sundays.

And on Tuesdays and Fridays, you can catch the “mobile” markets in the city center: shops and stalls are installed right on the streets — and please hurry to try and buy cheeses and olives, bread and noodles, spices and sweets.

However, on any other day, too, no one will be deprived: all in the same center, at the intersection of streets Ataturk and Dzhevata Shakira (Cevat Sakir) and in the adjacent streets there are a lot of shops and shops where you can find cheeses and nuts, tea, honey, crumbly halva, the freshest Turkish delight (the best is pomegranate!) and baklava.

Well, something you can try right on the street.

Street food in Bodrum not as common as, say, in Istanbul: no one will eat fish in the port here, nor offer mussels with rice. Even doner and durum far from every step — in the area of ​​the marina, for example, they cannot be found (by the way, the Turks are asked not to be confused: durum — this is a shish kebab in pita bread, and doner — meat with skewers in bread). But now and then there are trolleys with baking simitçi — This bagels and braids, sprinkled with sesame seeds; ice cream trays dondurma — consistency, non-greasy and completely unpleasant: it is made from goat milk, and as a natural thickener, powder from orchid root is used.

The selling boys, by dragging their skewers, persuade them to try Lokma — mini donuts in a sweet syrup.

Here and there juice comes from unusually green pomegranates — this is a special sort.

His seeds are soft and sweet, and Bodrum they make good wine from it — but a glass of impatient juice is not worse.

And near the fortress, we came across an unusual “specialty” at all: at the entrance, on the sidewalk, an elderly English hippie sits and cleans the fruits of prickly pears. Put a coin and eat as much as you want. «What am I doing here? — asks hippies. — There is everything that I need: the sun warms my back, the sea cools my feet. And right above me are centuries of history. ”

Cevat Shakir, a Turkish publicist posted on Bodrum in exile, and then remaining here and glorifying him to the whole world, wrote: “They say you need to see Italy before you die.

Nothing like this!

Need to come to Bodrum — and live forever. ” Apparently, the old hippie just followed his advice …

Where to go


The town a few kilometers west of Bodrum is famous for its relaxed atmosphere, archaeological monuments (it grew up on the site of ancient Myndos), a beautiful bay and fish restaurants on the shore: there are noisy family and cozy romantic ones with tables right on the sand.

And the sunsets are simply unforgettable.

Black Island.

Half an hour on a boat from Gumbet Bay — and you’re on an island famous for its hot springs.

According to the legend, once unfaithful wives were exiled here, but instead of mourning their destiny, they enjoyed life, having discovered healing sources in the grotto.

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