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YACHT CHARTER
IN TURKEY

The Turkish coast seems to have been custom created for pleasure navigation, especially in the area around Marmaris, a location that has earned a first class reputation in the Mediterranean chartering trade

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Nautica Magazine 400, august 1995


EASY SAILING

Turkey

The coast between Bodrum and Kemer in Western Turkey, has become a must stop in the Mediterranean yacht chartering world. Those wishing to sail the beautiful coast stretch between spring and autumn, will find along antique historical traces, the traditional hospitality of its inhabitants and the result will be a cruise in one of the most rewarding areas in the West Mediterranean. In fact, it is in these parts of the year that this area will yield the very best of weather and the use of the yachting facilities, with moderate occupancy will be best enjoyed. If times is not a constrain the entire area can be comfortably sailed throughout; if instead time is at premium, it may be convenient to break down the areas to be visited in three main itineraries.

The first one should envisage Bodrum as the starting point with a stop over at Knidos, reaching Cati with its beautiful coasts. The next lay over will be at the English Harbour where passing the night at anchor is safe and tasting the typical seafood is an attraction to be savored: fish of which there is an ample and savory supply, prepared the local way with lemon, onions and tomatoes, will be long remembered after leaving behind this place. Cozy Ballisu will host you the following night followed by visits to Cleopatra, near Sidere.

Turkey The most called for port however, is Marmaris, a real Turkish Saint Tropez, a place that notwithstanding its mundane attraction, has preserved its oriental glamour with an intricate web of alley within the fortified citadel. Marmaris stands on the lovely Datca peninsula, the natural dividing point between the Aegean sea and the rest of the Mediterranean. Archeological ruins are aplenty with a particular notation for those of the theater degrading towards the sea. Another place not be overlooked is the Ekincik cove from where the river Dalyan can be navigated upstream with flat, low draught dinghies all standing by at the entrance. The nearby village is recommended for the sea bass served at the inns. A short paddle distance away from the village and trough a rustling cane thicket where large wing span herons nestle, will lead you to the Kaunos ruins renowned for the temple, the theater and for the thermal baths that were a sure attraction to the then visitors. Further inland the notable tombs, dug in the rocky river sides and carved in a typical fashion, bearing a resemblance to the small Ionic temples with their pinkie stone columns, can be visited.

Turkey By spending the night at Ekincik, one can reach the following day Manastir and thereafter proceed for Fethiye. The navigation is pleasant especially if performed coastwise heading for the Baba island to visit the Byzantine pyramid, the island's landmark, or steering for the Gocek archipelago, at the center of the Skopea gulf. Here, the exotic configuration of Kapi Creek may be admired and so are the semi submerged ruins at Manastir Koyu where, among other Byzantine vestiges, the remnants of what was once thought to be the favored Cleopatràs thermal baths are still visible. At Gocek instead, the environment is closer to our days civilization at the modern marina where however, resupplying is compulsory! From here, the tour will take you to the Olu Deniz lagoon with stark white sand and pine trees immediately overhanging. The night stop over should be at Geminel islet, rich in past maritime tradition with Byzantine ruins and well renowned fish restaurants.

After rounding Burunlar Cape on the following day, the hamlets of Kalkaan and Kas are reached; at this latter safe mooring will be found at the very deep and sheltered Polemos creek. Tersane, a small gulf in the Kekova island, is well known for its beach with some ruins of an old church while further east the remnants of what once was a town its port and castle still sticks out from the sea. On the southern island's side a deep fjord was in the old days, refuge to the Turkish pirates when chased by the Christian fleets. Fethye is also a recommended nigh anchorage, so that beautiful Gemile and Kadriga can be easily reached the following day.

The third itinerary should start from Kemer with a stop over at the port of Geneviz to finish the day's navigation at Adrasan. From here and with a short navigation, Finke and Kekova with its renowned beaches and archeological ruins can be reached. Wherever you go in Turkey, the coast will reward you with incredible seascapes in an eternal mild and begin weather: June and September are however, the best mouths for a cruise in the Eastern Mediterranean: navigation is easy aided by light winds, the sun is warm without burning and principally, the tourist's presence is hardly felt.

Those seeking swimming round the clock, should select the hotter months of July and August although May and October should not be discounted due to the favorable climate. As far as the type of boat to charter, this will certainly depend on the personal tastes bearing in mind that in addition to the normal availability of both motor and sail powered crafts, the local caiques, wonderful boats with ample inner space, should provide for fast power navigation or relaxing sails.

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