Treasures from the deep

Before leaving the picturesque village of Gümüşlük, we were determined to walk across to the other side of the isthmus and up the hill to see the remains of the ancient city of Myndos.

Picturesque Gümüşlük

The walk across the isthmus didn’t take long and once there, we were captivated by the gorgeous little bays with gin-clear water and what looked like the remains of buildings in the shallows, perhaps relics of Myndos?

The walk across the isthmus didn’t take long
We were captivated by the gorgeous little bays
The water was gin-clear
Perhaps the remains of buildings in the shallows, are relics of Myndos?

The walk up to the summit was quite steep but there was a good path with stairs in places.

The views were glorious – we could clearly see the Greek islands of Kalimnos and Leros surrounded by a sparkling deep blue sea – a truly beautiful sight!

The views were glorious!
The Greek islands of Leros and Kalimnos
in the distance

Some parts of the original city wall were still visible but apart from those and a few scattered stone piles, there were disappointingly few remains. The walk was really lovely though!

Remains of the city walls of Myndos
There were disappointingly few remains

Although there wasn’t an obvious path down the other side of the hill, we decided to give it a go – what could possibly go wrong?!

At the top! But where is the route down?!

Actually nothing did go wrong really but the walk down was rather more precarious than on the way up so it took us a lot longer. The views of Gümüşlük were lovely though so it was well worth the extra effort.

There wasn’t an obvious path down so it was a little more precarious
But the views of Gümüşlük were lovely

It was misty as we left Gümüşlük – there was a strange and eerie atmosphere – hundreds of gulls had flocked to the small island at the harbour entrance and everything was so unusually still. The sounds of our engines were muffled as we travelled across the dead calm waters out into the open sea.

Hundreds of gulls had flocked to the small island at the harbour entrance
There was a strange and eerie atmosphere
Everything was unusually still
The sounds of our engines were muffled as we travelled across the dead calm waters

Before too long the sun came out and a couple of hours later we were back for a second look at historic Bodrum.

Back in Bodrum for a second look

On our first visit there we had visited the underwater archeological museum, housed in the Crusader Castle, and just loved it – particularly the treasures found on the numerous wrecks along the coast in the area.

The crusader castle at Bodrum, home to the fantastic underwater archaeological museum
Inside the castle walls
A “Birdseye” view from the castle

Situated within the walls of Bodrum Castle, the museum is chock-full of fascinating exhibits.

The museum is chock-full of
fascinating exhibits
So many wonderful treasures
found in the shipwrecks
We loved seeing the treasures found on the numerous wrecks along the coast

There was so much to see but that we ended going to the museum twice in as many days.

It’s hard to believe this sculpture was made many hundreds of years ago

One of the highlights was the collection of artefacts from the world’s oldest known shipwreck, discovered in Uluburun in 1982. This incredible wreck, found by a local sponge diver, dates back to the Early Bronze Age – 14th Century BC.

Some stunning gold pieces found in the Uluburan shipwreck
A model of the Uluburun shipwreck

As well as the 10 tonnes of copper ingots, and a ton of tin ingots, there were 175 glass ingots of cobalt blue, turquoise, and lavender – the earliest intact glass ingots ever found. There were also many artefacts that proved there was a thriving commercial sea trade network existing in the Late Bronze Age in the Mediterranean.

175 glass ingots of cobalt blue, turquoise, and lavender were found – the earliest intact glass ingots ever discovered

Some of the most fascinating relics were already antiques when the ship sunk – one which captivated us was a worn scarab of pure gold inscribed in hieroglyphics with the name of Nefertiti (c. 1370 – c. 1336 BCE).

A pure gold scarab (centre) inscribed with
the name of Nefertiti
A close up of the Nefertiti scarab

In between museum visits we enjoyed strolling through the town looking at the many wonderful sights.

We enjoyed the sights of Bodrum
We loved seeing this lovely little vessel built in Bodrum and used for sponge hunting
for many years
This carved window caught my eye as we explored Bodrum
It was lovely to come upon these street musicians who were playing at some wedding celebrations

On one of our explorations we walked up to the 4th Century Greco-Roman theatre perched high up on the hill overlooking Bodrum.

The 4th Century Greco-Roman theatre is perched high up on the hill overlooking Bodrum.

We then went to seek out the remains of the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus which in its heyday was one of the Seven Wonders of The World.

We had to follow this lane to find the entrance to the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus
A model of the wonderful Mausoleum of Halicarnassus

Sadly after standing for 2247 years, the Mausoleum was destroyed by a series of successive earthquakes between the 12th to the 15th centuries.

Earthquakes began the destruction
of the Mausoleum

In 1402 the Crusaders arrived at the site and recorded it as being in ruins. They then proceeded to steal many of the massive stone blocks from the mausoleum to fortify their waterfront castle. Much of the beautiful marble was burnt into lime.

After earthquakes and the crusaders helping themselves there wasn’t much left of this fabulous structure
The Crusaders stole many of the massive stone blocks from the mausoleum to fortify their waterfront castle

At some point (probably at the time of the Crusaders), grave robbers broke into and destroyed the underground burial chamber, stealing all the treasures that had remained there since the burial of Mausolus.

The original steps down to the burial chamber

The Mausoleum was approximately 45 m (148 ft) in height, and the four sides were adorned with sculptural reliefs. It was such a wonderful piece of architecture and design that from then on, the Romans called all their magnificent tombs mausolea.

The Mausoleum was such a wonderful piece of architecture and design that after it was built the Romans called all magnificent
tombs mausolea

After Bodrum we returned to Yalikavak – where many super yachts choose to anchor – to restock our fruit and vegetables at the weekly market. The produce was so fresh and delicious-looking, especially the peaches which were massive and luscious to eat.

The striking coastline on the way to Yalikavak
Anchored in Yalikavak
There was loads of fresh fruit and vegetables at the market in Yalikavak
The peaches tasted even better than they looked!

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Salty tales from Bali Hai

In 2015, after a break from cruising of almost 30 years, my husband and I sailed off into the sunset - this time to the wonderful Islands of Indonesia and beyond. Three years passed and we swapped sails for wheels driving through Scandinavia and Europe in a motor home. Now we are on the brink of another adventure - buying a Lagoon 420 Catamaran in Athens. This is our story.

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