According to history, Cleopatra’s island was once the meeting place of Queen
Cleopatra and her lover Mark Anthony. Cleopatra is said to have ordered
shiploads of white sand to be brought here from Egypt to create her own secret
About 12 km from Marmaris is Gelibolu Bay, surrounded with mountains covered
with fragrant pine forests. From the beach, a traditional Turkish wooden
motorboat will glide you through the peaceful turquoise waters to Cleopatra's
After a short work through rocky olive groves you reach the “sandy” beach that
is actually made up of millions of tiny, perfectly round and empty seashells,
resembling pearly sand, that have taken millions of years to accumulate. Because
the formation of the sand takes such an extremely long time, a great effort is
made to conserve the beach, and it is therefore prohibited to take towels etc.
onto the sand itself. It is said that sufferers of rheumatic aliments find that
lying on this 'sand' significantly eases their complaints.
You can follow a stoney path from the beach to the well preserved ruins of an
amphitheatre on the island. Near the top of the hill are the ruins of a temple
(converted into a church by the Byzantines). Running parallel along the eastern
shore are ancient city walls and towers that have stood the test of time. The
Agora, containing stones carved in the shape of hearts is a delightful
attraction and also offers a panoramic view of the surrounding mountains.