Marmaris owes its debatable desirability to the industrial-tourism concept, and it does deliver by providing a non-stop party atmosphere for its British, Scandinavian and Russian summer tourists, most of them packaged. Still, the sprawling town does have a pretty harbour, crowned by a castle and lined by wood-hulled yachts and the vessels of visiting sailors.
Nevertheless, without the refinement of Bodrum, coarser Marmaris is essentially a sort of Kuşadası on steroids. Not many Turks you will encounter here actually come from the area, and few cultural attractions remain.
Nevertheless, Marmaris' immediate surroundings – including the rugged and relatively unvisited peninsulas of Bozburun and Datça – are spectacular, and the town makes a good base for gulet cruises, diving in pristine waters, and for visiting the Greek isle of Rhodes. And hey, there's always the nightlife.