Yalikavak Public Beach
Yalikavak Public Beach is a popular place with local families and a lazy afternoon there makes for a pleasant change from the more touristy areas. You’ll find it a couple of kilometres from the far end of Yalikavak’s main beach*. Trees provide shade along the water front and you can hire sunbeds for a small fee. The bay is calm and a large area roped off offers safe swimming.
The snack bar sells toasted sandwiches, chips, etc. plus ice-creams and drinks, but the real attraction here is that you can hire a barbecue and cook your own meal. Order it at the snack bar and they’ll deliver it to you a few minutes later with the coals hot and ready for cooking.
There is a loo and a small changing room – both pretty basic – and an outdoor washbasin.
*Follow the road out of Yalikavak which climbs towards the headland. Turn right at a mosque where a sign points to ‘Dodo Beach’. The road skirts the bay, past a hotel and down to the water’s edge. There is ample parking by the entrance to the beach. See the marker for Yalikavak Public Beach on our area map.
If you’re looking for a warm welcome and excellent value this is it! Situated next to the ‘dolmus’ station, the Mars Cafe is probably the friendliest establishment in the fishing village. They serve a variety of dishes including vegetarian options, all at very competitive prices.
Mariette and her Turkish husband run the café; it’s more of a bar and restaurant really. Mariette is a very friendly ‘front of house’ host and will even teach you the rules of Backgammon if you want to use one of the boards available for guests.
It’s not exactly a prime position, but makes up for its lack of beach / harbour front with good old-fashioned hospitality and a friendly welcome. Check out their weekly steak night and buffet night and meet some new people. It is a particularly good venue during ‘off peak periods when it attracts a lot of the locals.
If you’re on a budget and have already seen how cheaply you can buy a glass of cay (tea) at the Gumusluk Cay Bar (next to the jetty in Gumusluk Fishing Village), look no further than the small kiosk sitting next to the Bar. Here you can buy piping hot meat balls in fresh Turkish bread for the price of about £1.25.
It’s probably not the place to go for that romantic evening meal, but it does provide a cheap snack at lunch time and a pleasant view of the harbour. You could even splash out on a bottle of water from the Cay bar for another 50 pence!
If you’re in Gumusluk on a Wednesday, you really shouldn’t miss the weekly market! It’s a lively, colourful affair and offers an excellent choice of fresh produce and textiles. (Pop into the fresh fish shop in the fishing village afterwards and you’ve got everything you need for a great barbecue that evening.) The market is held just a few minutes’ walk* along the Bodrum road from the fishing village. It’s laid out in a ‘T’ shape with tents shading the stalls alongside the edge of a couple of fields. Everyone is friendly and there’s the usual banter as the stall holders ply their wares. One of our favourite stalls is at the far right of the ‘T’, selling fresh ‘Gözleme’ or Turkish pancakes with a variety of fillings including aubergine, cheese, meat, spinach and potato. With some fresh salad they make a great lunch. Another popular stall is one with a vast array of herbs and brightly coloured spices and stallholders who can answer any questions you care to ask. We rarely come away empty handed! Try to master a couple of phrase before you go to the market : Merhaba Hello Ne kadar lütfen? How much is that please? …and a few numbers so you understand the reply: 1 bir (beer) yarim (yareem) half 2 iki 3 üç (ewch) 4 dört (durt) 5 bes (besh) Tesekkür ederim (tesha cure edarim) Thank you.
To walk to the market from the villa is a pleasant 30-40 minute stroll, mainly through country lanes. Details on page 29 of the information folder at the villa. If you don’t want to walk back you can catch the dolmus (local minibus) The one going to Gumuskaya will drop you off at Opus top gate.
People come from all over the peninsular to Limon bar / restaurant to watch the sunset and sip cocktails. Set just above the fishing village, it has spectacular views over unspoilt countryside to the bay and numerous islands beyond. Seating is on sofas and armchairs and the tables spread out from the bar all along the hillside. If you just come for drinks and the sunset, beware the price of cocktails! However, a meal with wine or beer can be reasonably priced. The salad we had was fresh and the pasta and lamb dishes were tasty. With a glass of wine, coffee and a dessert we paid £20 each.
Call in at the restaurant to make your reservation and choose your table. Then make sure you arrive on time! We were a few minutes late the first time we went there and nearly lost our carefully selected sofa!