Watch Out for Turtles!

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It was a beautiful day in April, Easter Holiday break, sunny and warm with refreshing breeze. Just perfect. The kind of day you dream about in the depths of winter and it was the some place where people in castle museum are saying:

Please watch out for turtle crossings!

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Yes, it’s true and it was in Turkey – I just want to say: what an amazing place!

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I spend my Easter holiday in Marmaris with its historical heritage, natural beauty and shining sun and pristine bays. Home to national parks and forests and beaches with blue flags. Marmaris a splendid town with a history dating back to 12 thousand BC, surrounded by a lush green forests of pine trees and the deep blue sea stretching in front of it.

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Here in Marmaris I wonder what it would be like to live in a world where it was always sun, blue sky and sea and the days are sunny and hot and the flowers are in bloom, our smiles deepen, our laugher increases and our hearts open.

Take a short trip with me.

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Marmaris named Physkos in the ancient times, the seaside town is located in the province of Mugla at the intersection of the Aegean and Mediterranean region. Although it is not certain when Marmaris was founded, in the 6th century BC the site was known as Physkos (Φύσκος) and considered part of Caria.

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According to the historian Herodous, there had been a castle on the site since 3000 BC. In 334 BC,Caria was invaded by Alexander The Great and the castle of Physkos was besieged. The 600 inhabitants of the town realised that they had no chance against the invading army and burned their valuables in the castle before escaping to the hills with their women and children. The invaders, well aware of the strategic value of the castle, repaired the destroyed sections to house a few hundred soldiers before the main army returned home.

The town became known as Marmaris during the period of the Beylik of Mentese, the name derives from the Turkish word mermer, Greek màrmaron (marble) in reference to the rich deposits of marble in the region, and the prominent role of the town’s port in the marble trade.

In the mid-fifteenth century, Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror conquered and united the various tribes and kingdoms of Anatolia and theBalkans, and acquired Constantinople. The Knights of St John, based in Rhodos had fought the Ottoman Turks for many years; they also withstood the onslaughts of Mehmed II. When sultan Suleiman the Magnificent set out for the conquest of Rhodes, Marmaris served as a base for the Ottoman Navy and Marmaris Castle was rebuilt from scratch in 1522.

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Since 1979, renovation work has been continuing at the castle. Under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture, the castle was converted into a museum. There are seven galleries. The largest is used as an exhibition hall, the courtyard is decorated with seasonal flowers. Built at the same time as the castle in the bazaar, there is also a small Ottoman caravanserai built by Suleiman’s mother Ayşe Hafsa Sultan.

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The old part of town is a residential area around the castle. The old houses, all under preservation order and the narrow streets leading to them are a delight to explore: there are some classic examples of Mugla architecture on display.

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In Marmaris Lord Nelson and his entire fleet sheltered in the harbour of Marmaris in 1798, en route to Egypt to defeat Napoleon’s armada during the Mediterranean campaign. Nelson found Marmaris to be an excellent fleet anchorage: the entrance a narrow passage between 2 islands beyond which lays the huge landlocked bay.  Today with Marinas & summer busy town quay Marmaris is the hub of Yacht charter & sailing holidays along the Aegean coast.

Due to the variety of harbors and bays located in the area, Marmaris has been a central port of maritime trade for centuries. Harbour is also side restaurants and Cafe Bars offer visitors the perfect opportunity to unwind and relax after a great days sailing.( I think the best visit in quiet lazy day in April)

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Turkey has such diverse culture, architecture, food and so many different things to see, eat and do!

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Turkey is a land of myth, a cradle of civilizations, a canvas of nature’s most aesthetic bounties & a confluence of varied streams of culture. Owing to its favorable position, this place is the bridging nation between the East & West (Europe & Asia) & therefore boasts a spicy blend of oriental & modern, splendor & sleekness, which makes diversity its other name.

One of the many Turkish things I still miss is the sun, blue sea and blue sky, Turkish tea and simply Turkish breakfast (kahvaltı).

Desktop83 April is a wonderful month for all kinds a walks, whether in warm spring shower or balmy sunshine. Remind yourself what it’s like to have fun !

Ella

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About conservationwithella

Hello, I'm Ella, Art on Paper Conservator & Preservation Manager at Glasgow University Archives and Special Collections. This blog is a walk through my daily life, work, arts & crafts history, my discovery that everything in my life is enough to be a continuous source of reflection. I started blogging to entertain myself but I hope you enjoy it too. I'm sure you agree, that Life without art is nothing. :)

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