The Underwater Archaeology Museum, is one of Bodrum’s most popular tourist venues, and is known as the only underwater museum in Europe.
The Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archaeology, which received a special commendation in 1995 as a European Museum of the Year, was established in the Bodrum Castle in 1964. Initially, the restoration of the castle was the priority; later, exhibition halls were created in the available space.
The museum exhibits several collections of ancient artifacts including relics retrieved from local shipwrecks, divided over 14 exhibition departments in the museum. Many of the items found in the museums can be touched, felled and read about by visiting tourists. It’s visited by more then 300,000 visitors a year,Each shipwreck found in the museum takes it’s name from the area that they were found, the items that these ships were carrying can be seen in the display cabinets. Amongst the attractions in the Uluburun ship, which is the world’s oldest surviving sunken ship, dating back 3,500 years.Although the castle is under the auspices of the Turkish Ministry of Culture, all the museum exhibitions are overseen by the Institute of Nautical Archaeology, an American non-profit organization with bases both in Bodrum and Texas, United States of America.