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Gundogan is one of Turkey's gems. It is a small town situated on the Bodrum Peninsula with the delightful scent of orange trees welcoming visitors arriving by sea. The rock formations and really old rock cemeteries to be found in this area are quite famous and local legend has it that the rock formations are actually the remaining parts of an ancient zoo which was built of stone.
The nearest airport to Gundogan is Bodrum Airport and there are a number of airlines that fly here, Thomas Cook, Thomson and Turkish Airlines to mention but a few. The flying time from the UK to Bodrum varies between four to five hours depending from which part of the UK you depart. Budget fares can be found if you are prepared to do your homework and peruse the internet as, although they are extremely popular, package holidays do not appeal to everyone and many people enjoying booking their own holiday and making all their own arrangements.
A UK passport valid for at least three months is required to enter Turkey. Transfer to your chosen accommodation will generally be by coach in the case of the package holidaymaker but there are taxis available for other travellers.
There is a variety of accommodation available ranging from hotels through to self catering villas and apartments and in each there is a warm welcome to be enjoyed from the locals.
Gundogan is a pretty town with flowers in abundance for most of the year, in fact when translated the word "Gundogan" means "the sunrise" and there are some fantastic sunrises and sunsets along this peninsula. Much of the traditional Turkish way of life is still in evidence in Gundogan and activities such as fishing and sponge diving remain important to the town. The growing of olives and tangerines takes place here and although it has grown somewhat, the character of the original village has been maintained with houses still surrounded by pomegranates, bananas, mandarin and olive trees.
Restaurants and bars are set amongst the fruit trees as well as being situated on the jetties which circle the bay, many of them serving traditional Turkish cuisine. There are plenty of colourful cushions provided for you to relax on whilst you sip a cool glass of wine watching the children playing on the beach or listening to the lap of the waves as they break against the rocks.
Snorkelling is popular here as is waterskiing, windsurfing and jet-skiing. There are many yachts anchored around the tiny harbour as well as fishing boats and of course the famous Turkish gullets. Holidays can be spent on board a gullet where the visitors actually participate in crewing the boat and many a lifelong friendship has been formed by people who have spent an enjoyable time together aboard a gullet. Diving lessons are also available and underwater photography is also available. There are opportunities to go horse riding and walkers will find the terrain ideal.
There are boat trips leaving from Gundogan which visit secluded bays and you can also catch a ferry to Didim. En route you will be amazed as seals and dolphins swim at the side of the boat. On the other side of the bay is Rabbit Island where you will find an ancient Greek church and the remains of a Byzantine monastery which dates back to the 9th century AD.
If you feel a complete change of pace is required, you can take a dolmus which is a mini bus taxi to either Bodrum or Gumbet. The shopping in both of these towns is superb and you will find plenty of jewellery outlets, souvenir shops and boutiques selling copies of well known outfits. The bazaar at Bodrum is a shopper's dream and the aroma from the spices is superb. The spices are all quite reasonably priced.
There is an art to shopping in Turkey; specifically the ability to haggle well. Shopkeepers and stall holders all expect their prospective customers to barter for the items in which they are interested and although it seems strange at first, by the end of your holiday you will have become an expert haggler.
The nightlife in both Bodrum and Gumbet is second to none and party people will delight in the number of clubs and bars providing disco and karaoke until the early hours.
Gundogan is one of the jewels of the Bodrum Peninsula, where you will be sure of a relaxing holiday but the busier towns of Bodrum and Gumbet are just a dolmus ride away if you feel it is time for some hectic nightlife or superb shopping.