Datca has sparkling, deep blue, 52 big and small coves
which have the quality of an aquarium on the coastline of 235 km
which connects Mediterranean and Aegean Sea.
Datça, which does not have big settlements and industry facilities,
has an extraordinary clean sea as well as the air. As well as the blue flagged
beaches, it is also possible to have a sea delight at other
points with peace of mind.
If you pass by Datca, you should absolutely see the Old Datca, which
is the most organized one among its three neighborhoods. Its
oldness comes from its being the first settlement area and having
a majority of the old ruined buildings. These ruined buildings are in
re-construction nowadays . Old Datca houses which have two floors
at most has given a visual richness with stone dressing and also with
its narrow streets adorned with bougainvillea.
Carian civilization was the first settlers in Datça in 2000 BC. Dorians
came to the region through Greece during 1000 BC and founded
six cities, the center of which was Knidos. They founded Knidos at
Burgaz Area which is 2 kilometer-northeast of the center of Datca.
It went under the reign of Persians from Lydians in 546 B.C. Knidos
was carried to Tekir Cape on the edge point of peninsula because of
the commercial reasons in 4th century BC and came under the reign
of Alexander the Great. From the 2nd century AD, it came under
first under Roman Empire, and then East Roman Empire. Knidos was
destroyed and abandoned after the earthquakes and the Arabian attacks
in the 7th century AD. Datca Peninsula has been controlled by
Mentesoğullari Principality between the 13th and 15th centuries.
Datca Peninsula became an Ottoman Empire land and the name was
changed to Resadiye during the reign of Sultan Resad. During the
period of the republic it became a district of Muğla Province. The
settlement was carried in 1947 to İskele District, to its current place.
There are 52 bays along the coast of the peninsula. In front of some bays,
there are small islands. Some of the coves are very big and has long beaches.
On the northern shore facing Aegean Sea are Gökçeler Bükü, Küçük Çatı,
Çatı, Kızılağaç, Alavara, Çakal, Damlacık, Mersincik, Murdala and İskandil.
The Körmen Harbour, where ferries come near, is also on this side.
Along the shores of Mediterranean, the important coves are Palamut Bükü,
Akvaryum, Akça Bük, Kuru Bük, Ova Bükü, Hayıt Bükü, Kızıl Bük, Domuz
Bükü, Kargı, Karaincir, Sarı Liman, Kara Bük, Çiftlik, Kuruca Bük, Günlücek
and Lindos. Knidos on the edge of the peninsula and Cape Crio Peninsula
seperates the seas. On the both sides, there are two moon-shaped coves.
Richness of Datca in terms of plants is known since the ancient ages. It is very clear that this feature has played an important role for Knidos
to be an important medical center. Climate features are the major reason of Flora richness. While speaking about the Datca flora, almond comes to mind
first. It does not matter if you think of green almond of the spring or of the almond kernel after the spring. Datca almond has an important
existence in both terms.
Almond: There are two kinds of almond; first of them is sweet almond species while the other is bitter one. Datca almond is accepted as the best almond in the
world. It leads the most of the production and the tastiest almond in Turkey, as well. There are various species of almond such as Nurlu, Ak, Kababağ,
Dedebağ, Sira and Dis almonds. The almond kernel is eaten first in May. After the outer shells are opened, they are collected from the trees
in July-August and dried under the sun.
Olives: Datça produces olives since ancient times.
Thymus: Various kinds of thymus like purple thymus, fig thymus, cheese thymus, honey thymus, spice thymus grow by themselves.
Flos lavandulae romanae: It is in the same family with thymus, but it smells different. It is seen abundantly in the maquis groves.
Sage: It is grown in Turkey and also in a lot of places in the world. The tea of which is drunk at the coffees of Datça.
Carob: It is called ‘harup’ by the locals. It is used as an aphrodisiac from the ancient times. It was also used as a sugar substitute.
Capers and Black pepper: They are found abundantly in the peninsula, which add flavour to the dishes.
Datça Date Palm (Phoenix Theophrasti Greuter): It is the leading endemic plant in Datça. It grows in two different areas along mountain
range. Anemone and varied wild flowers are the other plant richness of Datça. The various kinds of flowers can be seen in Datça, which
welcomes the spring earlier.
Knidos Ancient City
Knidos has been carried to the place where the magnificent
remains of today are seen, that is the edge point of the peninsula
for commercial reasons in 4th century B.C. Strabon declared
that the city was built along Knidos’ coastline and on the island in
front of Knidos. Two harbors were built by filling the sea between
the island and the land. The harbor on the North side was named
‘Northern Harbor’ and used for military purpose. The harbor on
the South was used for commerce. The finds of the jetty at the harbor
and the tower at the Northern Harbor can still be seen. Dorians
and Romans built many temples in Knidos. Temples have left its
place to churches during Late Romans and Early Byzantine period.
The population of the city has reached around to 70 thousand.
Knidos was an important trading center as well as a city
of culture and arts. Praxiteles, the famous sculptor pf the 4th century BC created Aphrodite of Knidos for the Temple of Aphrodite, is
considered to be one of the most important archaeological finds.
At the religious ceremonies with the participation of Ion cities, the
performers gave particular importance to Aphrodite. Eudoxus, the
famous astronomer and inventor of the horizontal sundial, Praxiteles,
Skopas, Bryaxis and the architect Sostratus, who built the
Lighthouse of Alexandria that is considered as one of the Seven Wonders of the World, were all native of the city. The agora, the
theatre, an odeum, a temple of Dionysus, a temple of the Muses, a
temple of Aphrodite and a great number of minor buildings are the
important finds of Knidos ancient city. The most famous statue by
Praxiteles, the Aphrodite of Knidos could not be found up to today. It
is believed that the statue was removed to Constantinople (modern
İstanbul) and was burnt in a fire in the Palace of Lausus.
According to Herodotus, Datça was accepted the city of the colony
by Spartans, but over time they became the dominant military
land-power in the region and thanks to Phoenicians they advanced
in navigation. Knidians sought to separate the Reşadiye peninsula
from the main land as a defensive measure to Lydians’ attacks. Because
of the rocky ground, it got harder to dig the land. Afterwards,
the Persian invasions began and therefore it could not be completed.
To enlighten the history of Knidos, first excavation work was done by
English Charles Newton between 1856 and 1858.
The culture of Datca cuisine carries the varieties of
both vegetables and sea foods. There are various kinds of meals
that are not even known by the other local places in Datca. It is
natural not to hear their names as local dishes are called local
names. Some of them may only be cooked at houses that keep
traditional cuisine. Some of the names of the culinary follows
the way of how they are called; Dalampa (daisy stalk), karaville
(snail), kaşıayak weed, cardoon, grasspea, turpucu weed, ilabada
weed, utmek weed roasting, dalankıta,etc. Most of them
are cooked with various herbs and plants. Most of the meals
and mezes are cooked with sea foods. Octopus salad, raw fish,
stuffed sardines, cuttlefish stew, grilled or fried squid, octopus
dumplings and salad, buttered prawns, sea beans with garlic
walnut and bread crumbs sauce are the famous one for the