Spend a week onboard with your closest friends.
One year after our first trip to Turkey and we could not resist a return trip. This time around we grabbed a bunch of our friends and boarded a traditional Gulet for a week along the Aegean coast. It came equipped with a multitude of sun beds, a bar and a three man epic sailing crew.
A Turkish welcome.
In the lead up to our trip it was difficult to ignore the evolving political situation in Turkey. It was extremely unnerving to find out about the Istanbul Airport bombing just as we checked in for our flight to Dalaman. With many of our friends due to fly into the affected airport it was a bit touch and go as to whether everyone would arrive in time.
Arriving into Fethiye, my doubts subsided. The streets were significantly quieter than the year before but the people remained as welcoming and resolute as ever. The Turkish custom says that a stranger at ones's doorstep is considered "God's guest" for three days. It's most noticeable in the small gestures like having an elderly Turkish man walk over with one of his chairs so you don't have to stand out in the sun. The hospitality really resonates with you.
Topdeck can take can of everything for you.
You can't go wrong with Topdeck's week long "Blue Lagoons" sailing experience. They are great at accommodating large groups and special dietary needs. Book early and ask for the honeymoon suite cabins at the back of the boat. There are only two onboard and furnished with an extra large window they are much more comfortable in the heat.
It's the best way to relax in the heat.
Early July is the perfect time to go with daily temperatures in the mid 30s. Expect to be blessed with sunshine. You'll have time to work on the perfect tan and take advantage of all of the swimming stops.
Check out all the cool stops on the way.
Fethiye- embarkation point
Stay near the marina so that the shops and restaurants are only a short stroll away. Mozaik remains my favourite restaurant in Fethiye. I still can't get past the service, delicious authentic foods and reasonable prices. Catching the mini-buses is a bargain at 2Lira and you can flag them down from pretty much anywhere. If you fancy a dip, head to Calis beach which is only 20 minutes along the coast.
Nicholas island, Gemiler
Get your camera and sundowner at the ready to enjoy a fabulous sunset over the ocean. Aside from gorgeous views, the real star of the show here is Crepe lady. Rolling out fresh crepes boat-side, she's extremely popular so hail her down as soon as you spot her rowing past. Make sure you always carry a spare 10 lira (or two) to buy her wares. The salty spinach and feta is balanced by the decadent nutella and banana.
Oludeniz, Blue Lagoon
Say yes to the paragliding. If you are looking for further encouragement to jump off what is considered the second best place in the world, check out our previous Turkey post for pictures.
Spend your days relaxing at the cliffside bars built right into the ocean. Coinciding with the end of the Ramadan celebrations, the nightlife got a much needed boost from the holidaying nationals. Walk up the hill away from the harbour and follow your ears until you find the small bars where the locals hang out. Here you can lap up the great live music scene. End your night with a romantic stroll along the harbour wall for beautiful views over the water.
This gorgeous sea village snuggled into the cliff was home to our beloved chef, Musty. The economy could really do with a boost here so it makes a great spot to load up on bracelets and gifts made by the locals. The I'm Here cafe really does have the best homemade icecream in town. Don't resist the mulberry flavour made with fruit taken straight from the owner's garden. The lemon favour and goat vanilla are also standouts.
If you find yourself in need of an escape and lashings of Vitamin D, book yourself onto a gulet. You'll already be planning your next sail come trip end when you find it difficult to part ways with boat and crew.
You can pack light.
Don't forget to pack your... inflatable devices, sunscreen, sick beats to blast through the sound system, group of mates to enjoy it with.
Go on! Treat yourself!