Reasons to Book the Blue Cruise in Turkey This Summer
For Many years sailors have been attracted to Turkey’s Turquoise coast, filled with stunning bays, crystal waters, cute towns, Ancient Lycian cities and a backdrop of the snowcapped Taurus Mountain range. A gulet cruise is a fantastic way to enjoy some of Turkey’s most beautiful spots, boats regularly depart from the main coastal towns of Fethiye, Marmaris and Bodrum, with many routes along the Turkey’s south Coast as well as trips to Greek islands.
From the port town of Bodrum, straddled between the Aegean and Mediterranean Sea’s, to the colourful Fethiye harbour and the wide apartment backed city beach in Antalya, the Blue Cruise will take you past some of Turkey’s most impressive scenery. The southwest coast lies at the foot of the Taurus mountains where bare rock faces drop directly into deep blue sea and small caves appear in cracks just above the water. Rugged hills envelope enchanting beaches and green islands float like sugar lumps in the ocean. Photographers will instantly fall in love with the unimaginable natural beauty of the Turquoise coast. A multi day cruise would offer you the chance to watch spectacular undisturbed sunrises and dazzling sunsets from the comfort of your gulet boat.
Swim in Picturesque Locations
The advantage of cruising on the crystal waters is that there are naturally many opportunities for swimming and snorkeling in secluded coves and caves which are not accessible by land. A Blue Cruise starting in Fethiye would take you to the Blue Lagoon at Oludeniz, with its azure blue hue and sandy beach where you can watch paragliders launch themselves from top of Baba Mountain. There are many great spots close to Kas where your boat will anchor in the Kekova bay for optional snorkeling and swimming or further east towards Demre you can jump from the deck of your gulet and swim into the mystical Blue Cave through the narrow, sunlit entrance.
South west Turkey was once dominated by the Lycian people, although evidence of Ancient Greeks and Romans is also present in the region. A Blue cruise can take you to many of these interesting sites including Patara Ruins, once a wealthy Lycian port city and major trading centre, Patara sits at the end of the Xanthos river at the east end of a 12-kilometer sandy beach. Myra and Phellos are also well-preserved Lycian sites that can be visited on a Blue Cruise. The most captivating is the ancient city of Kekova which, due to earthquakes, now lays beneath the sea. Kekova is justly referred to as the Sunken City and the protected area can be observed from your gulet boat or from the top of Simena castle.
Watch for Wildlife
Nature lovers will be in for a treat, keep your eyes open and you should spot a few dolphins, they are particularly numerous around the resort town of Kalkan, and you may also see whales rise to the surface. Endangered species such as Monk Seals, Loggerhead and Green Sea Turtles inhabit these waters and there are nesting areas at Patara and Cirali. Luminous fish light up the dark waters at night and to provide a colourful show. Birdwatchers can search for the Imperial eagle and other rare birds at the wetlands behind Patara beach or look for the Jersey Tiger Butterfly in Butterfly Valley.
Diverse Day Stops
The Blue Cruise routes will bring you to various points of interest along the coast where you will be able to go ashore for shopping, eating and exploring. Many routes dock in the busy fishing town of Kas, with nearby ruins and a bustling market street, as well as the dramatic blue bay of Olympos and Cirali, alternatively you could begin/end your cruise here with a Kas to Olympos Blue Cruise and take you time to explore the area.
A long pebble beach connects the two small towns at the foot of a rocky cliff face, Olympos most famously offers visitors the chance to explore the Lycian ruins which stretch along the valley’s river bank all the way to the sea, impressive burial sites can be found strewn throughout the steep pine forest. At the further end of Cirali the beach becomes sandier and you can find the carettas (Sea Turtles), from May to October nesting takes place here and you are likely to see turtle tracks in the sand. A short hike from the beach will take you to a natural phenomenon, Chimaera (Yanartas), where small flames burst from various places in the rock, burning all day and night.
Two Countries in One Vacation
Due to their proximity, it is possible to explore both the Turkish coastline before sailing from Bodrum across the Greek border to the nearby Dodecanese Islands. Routes are available to the Northern Islands, visiting Kos, Leros, Patmos, Pserimos and Lipsi or the Southern Islands, which additionally stops at Rhodes, Symi and Nisyros, a rural volcanic island with cobbled stone streets and local eateries. Most Blue cruises around the Greek islands are from 4 to 8 days and offer a pleasant mix of Greek culture and history, great snorkeling and diving opportunities – check out the English Harbour – and idyllic views across the sea to scattered islands.