Welcome to Turgutreis
Once an important sponge-diving centre, Turgutreis has turned its sights on tourism, particularly longer-term villa and apartment rentals, and it offers 5km of sandy beaches, more than a dozen tiny islets just offshore and some logistical advantages. As the peninsula's largest town after Bodrum, Turgutreis has more services, shops, ferry and dolmuş links than its neighbours, and more concrete – the Saturday market resembles dusty middle Anatolia more than an Aegean retreat. Indeed, the waterfront statue of a colourful blue and green woman holding an olive branch is meant to represent the peacefulness and diversity of the Aegean region. It is one of the peninsula's more workaday places, and for short stays the prettier neighbouring villages are a better option.
In 1972 the village, then called Karatoprak, was renamed after Ottoman Admiral Turgut Reis, who was born here in 1485 and led many maritime battles before dying in the 1565 siege of Malta.