Bodrum Hidden Gems

Ingiliz Limani (English Harbour)

Situated at 36°55’06” N – 28°10’09” E, it got its name from the rumor that the British navy ships and submarines took shelter here during World War II. After battling the German ships in the Aegean Sea, they retreated to hide in this bay; even sometimes using trees as camouflage coverage. German planes could not see them from the sky either.

Best way to secure a good spot is to go as early as possible before the day sailors come in. Due to the narrowing geography of the cove, space can get limited during midday for near-shore spots. A particular interesting fact that makes this location intriguing is that the newest summer vacation house of Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is being built right outside of the cove. So don’t be surprised if the coast guard boat comes to take a quick look of what you are up to!

Gokagac Koyu / Camalti Koyu (Pine Cove)

Coordinates for this large cove joined by several mini coves lays at 36°51’32.00″ N – 28°1’16.00″ E. As the name suggests, the peninsula shaped land covered with pines slowly submerging into the turquoise blue water is a breath-taking scenery that welcomes you with open arms. The geography of the land is relatively flat, resembling a table top. You can sail towards the left of the cove for a more private and secluded area, but space may be limited. We spent a full day there, and you just cannot get enough of the serenity. It give you an indescribable cosy feeling and like you are in a completely separate area, cut out from the larger cove.

You can easily stay at anchor at the sand bottom that nears to 5-7 meters from the shore. If you want to get to the shore, make sure you take some water resistant shoes with you so you can walk on the rocky beach. Once you get there, there is a beautiful forest road that connects separate bays of these seven mini coves. Go for a hike, catch the sunset from an elevated boulder and then jump back into the pristine blue water to swim back to your boat for a sundowner!

Kargilibük Koyu

Another hidden gem at 36°55.9006 N – 28°05.6254 E, this deep cove is protected from prevalent winds. The fjord type shape is worth the detour with its pine forests that descends into the sea. At night, if you feel extra courageous under the moonlight, jump into the water and the bioluminescence plankton would swallow you up, and create a mesmerizing light show around you. It’s an amazing sight to see and feel.

Due to the lengthy shoreline with large rocks and pine trees leading all the way into the water, you can stern tie to the shore on anchor. It’s quite a large area, so plenty of space should be available for day and weekend sailors who want to visit the cove for a day. Although later in the year, especially after September, there is significantly less traffic and you may find yourself alone at peace in this large cove. When we went sailing and anchored in Kargilibük in late August, there were only two other boats in the massive cove. We were so at peace, AKA lazy, we ended up staying 2 full days without moving!