If Greece is home to the magic islands of the Mediterranean, then Turkey is the storehouse of it’s romantic past. In addition to the magnificent scenery, probably the most striking characteristics of Turkey is the friendliness and honesty of its people. Wherever you sail in Turkish waters, particularly along the southern coast, there will be something exciting to discover. The legacies of ancient civilisations abound, making irresistible attractions.
Amphitheatres, sunken villages and rock tombs wait to be discovered and marvelled at. Turkey is really the meeting place of the East and West. Because the days when Istanbul was Constantinople, Turkey has been a country astride two cultures, European and Eastern.
Turkey is the home of such unlikely historical and mythological companions as the city of Troy, Noah’s ark and Santa Claus. The land is a fortuitous combination of cultures, along with a wealthy history which comes alive within the too-numerous-to-count archaeological sites. The jewel of Turkey’s southern coast is Marmaris, a clean, modern town using a festive promenade along the wharf beneath a 16th century citadel. In spite of rampant development, Marmaris remains a charming town while supplying the best facilities available to the cruising yachtsman.
A short sail in almost any direction from Marmaris and also the modern marinas and rise hotels give method to a peasant Turkey with impromptu restaurants set against ancient ruins in secluded bays. Here a three-course meal will probably set you back the cost of an assorted drink and the warmth, colour and frankness in the local people provide truly memorable evenings.
The nearby fishing village of Datca furnishes the town using the freshest seafood imaginable, and dining at even the littlest café is actually a culinary treat. Shops offer good buys on carpets, brass, silver and leather goods. The website of ancient Knidos – where one of the most beautiful sculptures of antiquity resides, the Venus of Praxiteles – is at the tip in the Peninsula of Marmaris.
South of Marmaris, the little fishing village of Dalyan is the starting point of river trips to the ancient ruins at Caunus. Along the way, boats pass centuries-old Lycean tombs carved to the rocky cliffs of the river banks. At Caunus ancient remains incorporate a well-preserved 15,000 seat theatre.
South of Dalyan – inside the eastern gulf of Fethiye – is the city of Fethiye, built on the 400 BC ruins of Telmessos. It is really an section of great archaeological fascination: the ruins of 19 ancient cities are littered inside the surrounding countryside. One of the nearby spots most interesting to charterers is Ruin Bay. Running from the shoreline towards the crystal clear bay are ancient foundations; just by donning a mask and snorkel, visitors can float higher than the long-forgotten village, accessible only by yacht.
East of Fethiye is legendary Antalya featuring its Roman lighthouse overlooking the harbour. This coastal area is known for its many beautiful waterfalls cascading to the sea. The epicentre of the famed Turquoise Coast, it has the best beaches and swimming anywhere.
Apart from the bareboat option, Turkey offers a multitude of fully crewed charter yachts with Marmaris the crewed charter capital in the eastern Mediterranean. Europe’s finest vessels up 200ft line the quay creating a French Riviera display of teak decks and polished brass. Charter World’s Brook Felsenthal says that the crewed charter alternatives are becoming increasingly popular with Australians, particularly the Gulets and Caiques.
These vessels are extremely roomy with as many as six double staterooms all with ensuites. The wide beams create excellent deck space while here are carpeted mahogany interiors, efficient showers and toilets, lockers fimcji of snorkelling masks, windsurfers and backgammon sets. Even so, you can still make out your discernable outline of a boat that might have carried sponges or oranges in days of yore.
Travelling overland through Turkey is portion of the adventure and romance of this interesting country. Local buses leave for anywhere almost hourly with places including Gallipoli, Capridoccia, Pamukkale and Ephesus to go to; you can easily spend the great thing of any week ashore. Visiting Turkey is an enlightening journey as anyone who has experienced it can testify. It thoroughly deserves its reputation for being one of many finest cruising spots on the planet.