Marmaris ...Sailing the turkish coast
The Rosy Aparthotel in Marmaris proved to be everything we expected and more ! The pink colour of most everything in the hotel was a clear give away -
We're in for a bad taste party! There seemed to be a uniform in place (which made us stand out like sore thumbs !) - tattoes, shaved hair with mohican and overweight white bodies in very tightfitting clothes - and this from about age 5 to 75. Had they not had a turkish night on the programme, it would have been difficult to work out that we were not in the UK - judging from the music, menu and the accents around us. The guests all seemed to be having a huge amount of fun around the very small pool and waterslide ...I think we were the ones not appreciating it all. To spend a 1 or 2 week holiday here - holiday hell ...unless you get into kareoke and bingo ! seeing that our room faced the bar area - noise levels were unbearable until 4 in the morning ...and then started again at about 7 ! Luckily we only stayed for 1 night before getting onto the yacht.
On Friday night we walked across to the Marina to see the yacht and meet up with the Beckurts family - our sailing partners for the week. Awesome 49 foot yacht - which I looked at with some trepidation. For those who know me, know that I get seriously sea-sick by just watching movies about sailing and walking on the gangways in the harbour !!! Well - thanks to my amazing anti- nausea tablets I did not have any symptoms of sea-sickness for the entire week's trip. Just awesome !!!
We went out to a great local restaurant - recommended by the yacht charter agent - and were duly treated to loads of wonderful turkish food. Such a treat !
Then ...about the time we needed to find back to Rosy, I realised that we didn't really note down the street name . I had looked at the name on the street sign and saw a number ans SOKAK (still remarking "what an apt name given lur hotel : so kak ). However on looking around - every sign had SOKAK on it - which obviously (then) means street or road and the number is the important part ! Such a giggle ...but we found our way home - walking through the chaotic bar street with scary bouncers and with our kids about 100m in front or behind us (can't be seen with embarrassing oldies in this environment - we didn't see any problem high- fiving each other every time we got an invitation into one of the clubs !).
Next morning bright and early sees us walking to the marina - 1.5kms with our luggage in bags (suitcases left at Rosy for safekeeping). Eventually we got there and bar street looked and smelled aweful at this time of the morning (crowd had most probably only left 1 hour earlier !).
Got on board - stowed our luggage and then the boys got a briefing on the sailing of the boat. Girls went off to do the grocery shopping - amazing the quantities you need to feed 9 people ! Especially drinks ...'cos that is really important to keep the "spirits" up.
Must say we have been spoilt for life sailing with this amazing crew - everyone jumping in to do their bit, be it with the sailing, shopping or with the food - and most importantly with the evening "drinks parties". Just amazing - could not have been better. We ate really well and we would challenge any cocktail bar for better drinks, snacks and service ! Although - ice proved to be a challenge on most nights - with Ricki and Dani even making friends with Gullet staff to get some ice ...desperate times call for desperate measures ...with money being thrown at the problem !! We enjoyed a few excellent meals in the bays we moored in and in Symi - but for the rest we organised our own rather healthy and really tasty lunches and dinners.
After sailing for a few hours every day, we enjoyed the calm waters and scenery of amazing bays along the turkish coast and to the very special Greek island of Symi :
Day 1 : Serge Liman - amazing dinner by Hasan and then fresh bread delivery to the boat the next morning. Swimming in the bay was just awesome.
Day 2 : Bozburun or Yesilova (city has 2 names) - mooring along the harbour wall, with the benefit of showers at a local restaurant where we had a lovely dinner. Next morning replenished fresh food, drinks and water stocks before heading off.
Day 3 : Bejek - gorgeous bay with tree -lined water's edge - and small island at the mouth of the bay. A Gullet had moored next to us. They were water-skiing - so Ricki managed to get a ski ! Although we had lots of invites to join them for drinks ...we preferred our own company ! Ricki and I invented the game of water ping pong - playing beach bats while treading water. We had no takers for starting a championship though !
Day 4 : Pedi Bay - on the island of Symi - which seems to be the secret tip for Greek islands. Quaint, small and no mass tourism - just amazing. And the bonus ...really worthwhile restaurants and friendly people. Great view of Pedi from the bay. Took the bus from there to Symi for a rather special dinner - a special treat by our Skipper, Tobi. Amazing array of Greek specialities - just superb !! Following morning we sailed into Symi Harbour - to fill up fuel, especially fresh water and restock some water and fresh groceries.
Day 5 : Panormitis - perfectly circular bay (seems to be the crater of volcanic activity - with a Monastery. Boys went off for some cliff jumping. Walking around the monastry was interesting and stocking up with fresh bread, spinach and cheese pies in the seriously ancient bakery (where the monks make you feel that you are extremely honoured to be able to purchase from their bakery...in a nice way) an amazing experience.
7) Bozukale - beautiful bay with a huge ancient fortress up on the hill. Amazing waters for swimming and snorkeling. Dylan was lucky enough to see a tortoise. Although we were able to swim in every bay - this provided for the bext swimming.
During the sailing time, we would put out a rope to hold on to and be pulled along behind the boat ...just to cool of and enjoy this amazing azure water. Must admit ...made a HUGE difference being able to get into this beautiful deep water, knowing that you are not at the bottom of the foodchain here ! Makes for seriously enjoyable swimming.
It was with a very sad and heavy heart that we returned to Marmaris - just perfect holiday come to an end far too quickly ! The last few sea- miles the wind picked up and we enjoyed some great sailing - just to round it all off really well ! Great skipper and great crew combination made for huge enjoyment and an even bigger amount of laughs. The hotly contested Happy Sailor/Camper Award was awarded with great fanfare to our Skipper Tobi - for a greatly managed trip ! After a dinner in Marmaris Harbour - the oldies went off to bed and the young crowd off to the infamous Bar Street. The following morning it showed that Dylan managed to be the last one to crawl back to the boat just as Tobi was getting up !!!
The Beckurts family left early for the airport and we got our bits and pieces together and made sure to take a taxi back to the infamous Rosy ! Luckily we got a room facing the street - and managed to catch up on some sleep. The iman from the mosque and the market below made sure that we did not get too much sleep though. Ricki and Dylan left the next day on the bus to Bodrum airport and then back to Cape Town via Istanbul. Clint and I felt really strange all on our own again. Holiday is just totally different than the travelling we have been doing.
The sailing trip with the Beckurts family was something we had discussed more than 15 years ago - a dream come true in the best possible way. Another first for the Evans family ...and hopefully not the last ! Thank you Skipper and Beckurts Family !!!