My wife and I took a day trip to Dalyan from Marmaris last October as part of a group of about 20, organized through the sister board to this site, CruiseCritic. The visit was organized through Kaunos Tours and included a bus from Marmaris to Dalyan, a boat trip on the Kalbis river past the Lycean hill tombs and back up to the mud baths, lunch at a riverside restaurant in Dalyan, the same boat down towards the delta to walk around the ruins of Kaunos, a return on the river to Dalyan, and return by bus to the port. Admission charges at the mud bath and at Kaunos were not included in the price.
Let me start with the good. The bus supplied rode comfortably, was well air-conditioned and the drive both ways was without drama. The mud baths were exactly as advertised and an interesting experience. The included lunch at a riverfront restaurant in Dalyan was more than adequate. The boat felt safe and its captain was friendly, if not that communicative. The vistas were lovely.
Other than facilitating the trip, Kaunos Tours did nothing for us. The company representative who met us with the bus in Marmaris said not one word to the group as a whole on the hour-plus drive to Dalyan. There, he united us with the boat captain, arranged an afternoon pickup time in excellent English, and vanished. Any interpretation of what we looked at came from other group members or from the bilingual (Turkish/English) displays at Kaunos.
We were dropped after lunch at a path leading up to the Kaunos ruins with vague instructions from the Captain to follow the uphill path to the ruins and back down to a different location at the other end of a loop through the site. Our group quickly split up to go at their own pace. If there had been just one path the visit would have been less of a challenge but the path forks repeatedly without signage, leaving one to guess at the best or most-travelled route. Once through the admission gate to the ruins the route became less of a challenge, but we still had to pick our way around the site with no map or brochure to guide us. How much of it we saw is anyone’s guess. And, on the way back down to the pickup point, four of us missed the correct, unsigned turn off the main road and went several hundred anxious metres in the wrong direction.
To top things off, the bus did not show up at the designated meeting spot back in Dalyan at the agreed time. It took several phone calls to Kaunos Tours before it arrived, almost an hour late, apparently due to a misunderstanding by the company representative as to the time he’d given us. He did not accompany the bus back to Marmaris, which was probably just as well.
Though the Dalyan area is well worth visiting and offers a lot for the day tourist, the organization of this tour was poor.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.