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Datca is the name of both an area and a town. The peninsula of Datca extends into the sea, separating the Aegean from the Mediterranean. Nearly 70% of the Datca peninsula is protected from development (theoretically, at least). A portion of the peninsula is used by Turkey's military to keep an eye on Greece. The peninsula is heavily forested and the remaining areas are designated agricultural areas. This means that your landscape is decorated with olive and almond groves, very neatly planted in terraced lots along the rising terrain. Roads are basic, but improved. There is bus service from Datca town, at the eastern part of the peninsula, all the way to Knidos, at the western end. Villages along the way are full of character, and the area has been growing rapidly, with new choices available each season. Due to the agricultural designation, you will find almonds, olives, fresh fruit and honey - all indigenous and locally processed. Bees are even brought to Datca annually to take advantage of the pine trees.
From Marmaris, or Datca town, one can pick up a gulet charter and take the tour around the peninsula to Bodrum or points north on the coast. Datca is the main town in this area, and has substantial resources compared to the villages on the peninsula. While Datca town has tourism, and is open to more growth, this is not a tourist area like Bodrum or Marmaris, with compacted villages of tourist resorts. Indeed, Datca town is a pleasant mix of old and new in the region.
Along the peninsula, on both sides, there are small beachside villages with marinas and tourism facilities. The northern side boasts a ferry to Bodrum - 2 hours each way. The southern side has a number of small pension-like hotels at the various towns, and several sophisticated european style restaurants. The southern beaches have established tavernas, with beach chairs and facilities at the beaches. Convenience stores are there as well, but most do their shopping in Datca town. There is a luxury hotel on the peninsula, on the southern side.
Datca is a breath of fresh air compared to places like Marmaris and Bodrum as you definitely won't find All Day English breakfasts if you know what I mean. Datca is a wonderfully lay-back destination where the locals are used to foreign tourists as it is a favourite stop-off place for Blue Voyagers travelling around the Aegean. However, this doesn't mean they allow the place to be spoilt by foreigners and Datca retains a local, provincial charm. It is about 3 hours from Dalaman airport by hire car, taking longer by public transport, so be prepared for a long journey along the winding, mountainous single road along the peninsula to get there.
Once in Datca, as you drive or walk down into town, you eventually come to a halt at the beautiful harbour with an amphitheatre on the tiny island at the very tip. Watch the sun go down and just watch life pass by - so simple, yet so wonderfully peaceful.