Road trip from Istanbul to the turquoise Aegean coast

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Road trip from Istanbul to the turquoise Aegean coast

What if you combined the grandeur of history with the beauty of seaside landscapes on your journey? We drove from Istanbul along the small coastal roads of Turkey's western coast towards the south, admiring the breathtaking views of the Aegean Sea, and I highly recommend this combination – a city and beach vacation all in one.

Combination trip or vacation Istanbul style

Road trip from Istanbul to the coast of the turquoise Aegean Sea and Bodrum.

Istanbul is, of course, a stunning destination in itself. But when Istanbulites themselves go on a domestic vacation, the most popular destination is the country’s western coast. And perhaps the most popular place is Bodrum. And I am not surprised at all, because the Turkish western coast is breathtakingly beautiful – a paradise for all lovers of the sea.

Road trip from Istanbul to the coast of the turquoise Aegean Sea and Bodrum.
Road trip from Istanbul to the coast of the turquoise Aegean Sea and Bodrum.
Road trip from Istanbul to the coast of the turquoise Aegean Sea and Bodrum.
Road trip from Istanbul to the coast of the turquoise Aegean Sea and Bodrum.
Naturally, I knew that Mustafa Kemal Atatürk is highly esteemed in Turkey, but on our road trip, I was surprised to find that even the mountains tell about him.

We went on a road trip by car, but if you don’t want to spend time on the road, flying is also inexpensive (at least it has been so far) from Istanbul to destinations on the western coast. However, when driving, it is worth noting the fairly expensive tolls on major roads.

Additionally, it is good to remember that if you want to enjoy the beauty of the coastline and nature peacefully and in pleasant weather, avoid the midsummer tourist season and super heat. Spring is, in my opinion, the loveliest time.

Turquoise cruises

From several towns along the western coast, you can go on a day cruise, which includes lunch and stops at the most beautiful bays and beaches in the area (most of them are on untouched islands), so you can go straight from the boat to swim in the turquoise, crystal-clear Aegean Sea. On our cruise, it was also possible to enjoy a hot spring located in a cave.

In Bodrum, you can stop by on a day cruise, which includes stops at the beaches of the most beautiful bays in the area (most of them are still untouched islands), so you can swim directly from the ship in the turquoise, crystal clear Aegean Sea.
In Bodrum, you can stop by on a day cruise, which includes stops at the beaches of the most beautiful bays in the area (most of them are still untouched islands), so you can swim directly from the ship in the turquoise, crystal clear Aegean Sea.
In Bodrum, you can stop by on a day cruise, which includes stops at the beaches of the most beautiful bays in the area (most of them are still untouched islands), so you can swim directly from the ship in the turquoise, crystal clear Aegean Sea.
In Bodrum, you can stop by on a day cruise, which includes stops at the beaches of the most beautiful bays in the area (most of them are still untouched islands), so you can swim directly from the ship in the turquoise, crystal clear Aegean Sea.
In Bodrum, you can stop by on a day cruise, which includes stops at the beaches of the most beautiful bays in the area (most of them are still untouched islands), so you can swim directly from the ship in the turquoise, crystal clear Aegean Sea.

If you have plenty of time, you can go on a longer several-day cruise along the western coast from the Aegean Sea to even as far as the Mediterranean, where you will see and experience stunning beauty on a large scale. And now we’re talking about small, charming boats, often even beautiful wooden sailing ships. Or, if you prefer, you can also choose ultra-luxury.

Awesome west coast

We didn’t have time for a long cruise this time, but just a day cruise and the beauty of the western coast’s nature as a whole were like a visit to paradise for a sea lover like myself – let the photos and little videos of this post tell you about the dazzling beauty of the turquoise sea, crystal-clear waters, and stunning nature.

Road trip from Istanbul to the coast of the turquoise Aegean Sea and Bodrum.
Lovely beach life in the beauty of Bodrum and the Aegean Sea.
Lovely beach life in the beauty of Bodrum and the Aegean Sea.
Lovely beach life in the beauty of Bodrum and the Aegean Sea.
Lovely beach life in the beauty of Bodrum and the Aegean Sea.
When you say you’re having dinner by the sea, here it is literally true.

Uyku Vadisi and Gökçeler Kanyonu

Turkey’s hidden paradise, Sleeping Valley (Uyku Vadisi) in the Muğla province, is aptly named, just like a pristine gem “in the middle of nowhere” – even though it’s only a little less than 50 kilometers from Bodrum. An essential part of the area’s uniqueness is also the breathtakingly beautiful Gökçeler Canyon (Gökçeler Kanyonu).

We also found the charming treasure of this hidden paradise, the small Uyku Vadisi Hotel, which was like nature’s secret garden and a peaceful oasis.

Turkey's hidden paradise, Sleeping Valley (Uyku Vadisi), in the Muğla province, lives up to its name, just like an untouched pearl of nature, just under 50 kilometers from Bodrum. We also found the hidden charming treasure of this paradise, the small Uyku Vadisi Hotel, which was like nature's secret garden and an oasis of peace.
Turkey's hidden paradise, Sleeping Valley (Uyku Vadisi), in the Muğla province, lives up to its name, just like an untouched pearl of nature, just under 50 kilometers from Bodrum. We also found the hidden charming treasure of this paradise, the small Uyku Vadisi Hotel, which was like nature's secret garden and an oasis of peace.
Turkey's hidden paradise, Sleeping Valley (Uyku Vadisi), in the Muğla province, lives up to its name, just like an untouched pearl of nature, just under 50 kilometers from Bodrum. We also found the hidden charming treasure of this paradise, the small Uyku Vadisi Hotel, which was like nature's secret garden and an oasis of peace.
Turkey's hidden paradise, Sleeping Valley (Uyku Vadisi), in the Muğla province, lives up to its name, just like an untouched pearl of nature, just under 50 kilometers from Bodrum. We also found the hidden charming treasure of this paradise, the small Uyku Vadisi Hotel, which was like nature's secret garden and an oasis of peace.

The Uyku Vadisi Hotel felt like a family community in the lap of nature: an idyllic place, friendly service, excellent food, and domestic animals roaming freely in a beautiful natural environment. I would have wanted to stay here to write; an ideal place for any quiet creative work or meditative retreat. Although probably during peak season, in the summer, the peace we experienced, in the spring, does not exist.

The Gökçeler Canyon, located near the Uyku Vadisi Hotel, is popular among nature lovers, mountain climbers, hikers, and cave explorers. True to its name, it is a majestic but lush 8-kilometer-long canyon with streams, ponds, waterfalls, and caves.

The area’s flora is diverse, consisting of centuries-old olive, walnut, fig, plane, and laurel trees, red pine, and various shrub species. Naturally, there is also a rich variety of animal species.

More information: Uyku Vadisi

The magnificent Gökçeler Canyon (Gökçeler Kanyonu), located in the Muğla province of Turkey, is popular with nature lovers, mountain climbers, hikers and cave explorers.

We can only admire this incredibly beautiful nature with gratitude – and also remember to appreciate, respect, and protect our entire planet, so vital to us.

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