Day 1: Bodrum
Boarding starts at 15:30. If you arrive early, you can leave your luggage at our office. Our boat will be anchored at Bodrum Port for the first night.
Before and after dinner, you can explore this spectacular “Turkish Riviera” rich with history and great stores for souvenirs. With its history dating back to the 12th century BC, Bodrum (ancient name: Halicarnassus) is the birthplace of Herodutus, the “Father of History”, who lived there during the 5th century BC. Bodrum will greet you with the Mausoleum of King Mausolus (350 BC), one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, St. Peter’s Castle built by the Knights Hospitaller of Rhodes (Knights of St. John),in the 14th century using the columns and reliefs from the Mausoleum. Also don’t miss the Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archeology located inside the castle which is the biggest museum in the world devoted to underwater archeology, and an Amphitheatre with a capacity of 13,000 seats, still hosting many shows and concerts.
Day 2: Knidos (Cnidus) and Palamutbuku
After your breakfast, we will set off for Knidos (or Cnidus) to visit this ancient city. Knidos was founded in around 360 BC by the Carians at the tip of Datca Peninsula, which separates the Aegean Sea and the Mediterranean Sea. As you walk among the ruins perched on top of a hill, you will have breathtaking views of the two seas shimmering under the sun, the Triopian Island separated from the mainland by an isthmus, and two harbours that were used as a military harbour and a trade harbour. You will see the remains of the agora, the theatre, anodeum, a temple of Dionysus, a temple of the Muses, a temple of Aphrodite, and the largest sun clock of its time. Knidos was famous for its naked Aphrodite statue sculpted by Praxiteles. The famous architect of the Alexandrian Lighthouse (also one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World), Sostrates is from Knidos.
Next we will go to Palamutbuku, where a beautiful beach and little restaurants under the tamarisk (salt cedar) trees are awaiting you. Make sure to jump into the cool waters to clean your dust off after visiting Knidos.
Datca Peninsula is one of the unspoiledlocations in Turkey known for its fresh air, fresh fish, olives, almonds, citrus trees, and honey. Datca has fame with three “B”s: Badem (Almond), Bal (Honey), and Balik (Fish) and you can have plenty of these in Palamutbuku. Datca almonds are considered to be the best in the world.
We will overnight in Palamutbuku.
Day 3: Datca and Bencik Bay
In the morning, we head for the quaint Datca, the main town of the Datca Peninsula. Datcahas kept its charm as a small town even while its sheltered marina attracts many boaters to dock there and enjoy the food at the restaurants. The street parallel to the marina has souvenir shops and more restaurants. There are three beautiful beaches in Datca where you can watch the local kids enjoy the clean blue waters… or join them yourself. Make sure to eat fresh almonds on ice with your ice cold beer.
After lunch, we will head to the Gulf of Hisaronu, a treasure of antiquityand a home to some beautiful bays and sleepy coastal villages of incredible beauty.
Our first stop isBencik. With its tranquil waters, Bencik is located at the narrowest part of the Datca Peninsula. This part of the peninsula is known as “Balikasiran” in Turkish, meaning “the place where the fish jump over”. When you arriveBencik, you are on the Mediterranea Sea. If you walk 30 minutes towards north, you reach Bordubet Bay on the Aegean Sea. Herodutus talks about Bencik Bay in his writings: Around 540 BC, Knidos people heard that the Persians are coming. So, they decided to dig a tunnel at this narrow point so that it will be easier to defend Datca Peninsula as Datca Island. However, they could not succeed, and Persians took over Knidos.
Overnight in Bencik.
Day 4: Bozukkale(or BozukBuku) and Selimiye
In the morningwe arrive at Selimiye (ancient name: Hydas), a historic village located in the Gulf of Hisaronu, with a magnificent bay completely surrounded with rolling hills and rocky mountains. The color of the sea is cobalt blue shimmering under the sun. Since the bay so secluded, the water looks like an aquarium where you can see schools of fish. You can walk the entire shore of Selimiye which takes about thirty minutes watching people eating at the restaurants set up right by the water or over the docks, passing cute pensions covered with purple and red bougainvilleas, village houses with their vegetable gardens greeting the sea,and you can shop at the high-end boutiques.
If you like, you can visit the ruins in Selimiye dating back to the Hellenistic period. There are three forts, a lighthouse, an abbey, ta heatre and a watch tower.
In the afternoon we sail to Bozukkale (meaning “ruined castle”, ancient name: Loryma), where the bay’s hills are adorned with the remains of a massive fortification, and a Hellenistic citadel is still intact,with its 8-meter tall limestone walls built around 10th century BC. During the days of the siege of Rhodes, Macedonian king DemetriosPoliorketes used this bay as a main port and supply for his fleet. After a successful defense, Rhodes decided to build strong fortification in Loryma to prevent enemies using this bay as a base during their attacks. Loryma ceased to exist around 1st century BC.
Enjoy the beauty of Bozukkale. You can take a hike to explore the ruins or swim in the calm clear blue waters of the Mediterranean.
We overnight in Bozukkale.
Day 5: KadirgaBay and Ekincik Bay
After Bozukkale, we leave for Kadirga Bay, a favorite with divers and underwater archeologists, to anchor for dinner and overnight. There is a light house at the entrance of the bay, at the tip of Kadirga peninsula, where there is a sunken ship. It is possible that the bay is named after this sunken ship. Kadirga is the name given to the naval ships specific to the Mediterranean region. First used in the sea wars in the 7th century and continued to exist until the 17th century. Snorkeling is highly recommended around the rock formations in the middle of the bay.
Next, we will travel to the tranquil harbour of Ekincik covered with green pine forests. Enjoy the afternoon swimming in the deep blue waters of this bay. You can swim to the sandy beach and explore the inlet.
Overnight in Ekincik.
Day 6: Caunos(Kaunos) and Iztuzu
There are flat boats, run by the villagers here as part of the cooperative they formed, with seating all around, ready to take you to Dalyan River and the rock tombs in Caunos in the next bay. The boats enter the Dalyan River (ancient name: Calbys River) where it meets the sea, next to a wide sand beach, called Iztuzu Beach. The Dalyan River is actually the border between the Lycia and Caria. As your river boat goes through the narrow channels among the bamboos and cattails, you can feel the tranquility and the simplicity of life. Just imagine that the life was not much different thousands of years agowhen Lycians lived right here where you are. You marvel at the tombs of the kings and of their families carved on the rocks on the high cliffs, still beautiful today since the 10th century BC. You can choose to walk around the temples, baths, nynpheum, and an ancient theater. Caunos was founded by King Kaunos, grandson of Apollo, and was abandoned after a malaria epidemic around 15th century.
The river boat will bring you back to Iztuzu Beach. Iztuzu beach literally separates the fresh water delta of the Dalyanriver and the Mediterranean Sea. On the way back to the beach, the river boat stops at a floating shackwhere you can purchase freshly grilled crabs, while watching the giant Loggerhead sea turtles (Carrettacaretta) sticking their heads out to see who is visiting. These giant turtles have nested here since the age of the dinosaurs and you are most likely to see them if you are visiting during the nesting season. There are strictrules on the beach to protect the nesting grounds of these endangered species.
Day 7:,Aga Limani, Manastir Bay and Gocek
Today, we will sail to the hidden cove of Aga Limani (Aga Bay). While we prepare breakfast, you can jump into the deep blue waters to refresh yourself. After breakfast, you can opt for a three-hour hike from Aga Limani into the mountains on a trail lined with thyme, eucalyptus, pine, and oleander bushes and reach Greco-Roman ruins and the Sunken Baths of Cleopatra. The color of the water at this little cove where Cleopatra swam is so light blue-green, you can see every object in the water. The ruins of the bath house are partially underwater. Or, you can choose to stay on the boat and sail to the Sunken Baths.
After lunch we head for Gocek. Gocek, a beautiful seashore town very close to the Dalaman airport, is a paradise for boaters, boasting seven marinas, beautiful secluded coves, green pine forests, sandy beaches, clean blue waters, and 12 islands nearby. Declared as a Registered Area of Special Protection, it maintains its charm with no more than 2-storey high hotels, a beautiful promenade with Jacarandaand mulberry trees, and with restaurants, cafes, and bars beckoning you to have a cold beer at one of their tables under the tree shades. There is no detailed information about the history of Gocek. Some sources say it was named Daidala(Daydala) during Lycian times and “Kalimche” later, and is located between Fethiye (Telmessos in ancient times) and Dalyan (Caunos in ancient times). The village of “Gocek, is about 2-3 kilometers uphill from the waterfront and it retains its village atmosphere. Some sources say Icarus fell from the sky into the waters of Gocek. Icarus’ father, Daedalus, was the builder of King Minos’ Labyrinthwhich imprisoned his wife’s son the half-bull, half-man Minotaur. Daedalus builds wings for himself and his son, Icarus to escape the prison. He tells his son not to fly too close to the sun, but his son ignores the warning, and soon all the heat melts the wax, and Icarus falls into the sea.
Overnight in Gocek.
Day 8: Gocek
Disembarkation at 10:00 after breakfast.
If you have time before your flight, make sure to walk around Gocek to enjoy the scenery, historic places and the shops.
The itinerary given above is not a fixed itinerary. As a private boat charter, your group can decide where to go, where to overnight, where to swim.