Cesme is one of the Turkey's most beautiful strerches of coast, surrounded by clear blue seas, with a landscape of cultivated fields. Visitors can enjoy unspoilt bays, excellent holiday accommodation, restaurants, sports and entertainment facilities. Thermal baths offer a healthy break from the rigors of modern life. Excellent shopping is available, with a good selection of carpets, leather goods and souvenirs. At night a lively atmosphere pervades, especially in the restaurants, cafes, bars and discos along the promenade. Cesme hosts many national and international meetings and conventions throughout the year.
According to the historian Herodotus, himself a native of bodrum, or to call it with its name in antiquity, Halicarnassos, the city was founded by the Dorians in 1000 BC, in the same location where the castle stands today.The city was an island then.
Halicarnassus lived its brightest years during the 4th century BC. Mausolos, who made this city the capital of Caria, gave orders and initiated the construction of the monument of moussoleion later to become one of the seven wonders of the world. Today, only the foundations of this magnificent monument survive. After his death, his sister-wife, Artemisia II, pushed ahead with the project. When she, too, died before it was finished , the architects and atists themselves completed it reling on their own resources. The result was a magnificient temple built in the lonian styl which had 34 columns at the base, on top of which was a 24 step pyramid and on the apex, marble statues of Mousolos and Artemisia in a chariot. Ada was dethroned by her younger brother Pixodarus, to be brought back to power by Alexander the Great, who conqueres the city in 334 BC.
After Alexander the Great, the reign was under the domination of Lysimachos and the that of Ptolemaios. In 189 BC. it was taken by the Creatans and in 167 BC by the Kingdom of Pergamum.Ưn the 4th century AD. during the region of the Kyrians, it became the headquarters of the Patriarchate. In 1274 AD, Mentese Beyligi Emirate settled here which joined the Ottoman Empire during the reign of Kanuni Suleyman(The Magnificent)in the 16 th century AD. Since the ancient city lies right beneath the present settlement, not much of it could be excavated. The theater on the hill alongside the highway which passes near Bodrum, has been built during the reign of Mausolos, also.
Part of the city walls can be seen from Myndus Gate located on gumbet road. The castle which is considered to be the symbol of the town was built by the Knights of Saint Jean with the permission of Sultan Celebi Mehmet (1402). Successive additions were made to the castle later on. The remains of Maussolleion which collapsed having been struck by an earthquake, were used as building material for the castle. The towers of the castle were named the French, Italian, German, Spanish and British Towers after their builders. Today the castle is a museum. The first and the only underwater museum of Turkey is here. The glassware collection of the museum is one of the largest-one of the four largest- collections of the world, to be precise.