Day 1: Gocek and BedriRahmi Bay
You will board your boat at Gocek, a beautiful seashore town, very close to the Dalaman airport. Gocek 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 namedDaidala(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’ Labyrinth which 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.
We take off from Gocek and sail to our first destination, BedriRahmi Bay (previously known as Tasyaka Bay) for dinner and overnight. Your captain will show you what looks like a fish painting on a rock, painted by BedriRahmiEyupoglu in 1973, a famous poet and a painter. The paint actually has six animals painted inside a frame of a fish. There is a fresh water spring right next to this painted rock. You can explore the beach and the Lycian necropolis with rock tombs while strolling among the pine trees. Make sure to swim in the fantastic blue water.
Day 2:Oludeniz, GemilerAdasi (St. Nicholas Island)
Early in the morning, we sail to Oludeniz (means “Dead Sea”, sometimes called the Blue Lagoon), due to its tranquil aquamarine waters all year around. The pine trees reach down to the water casting their beautiful shadows making the sea even more spectacular. This nature reserve is sheltered by Babadag(Father Mountain) and construction is prohibited. There are shacks offering umbrellas, beach chairs and food. It can get very crowded during summer months. But you can get away from all that crowd either by choosing paragliding or taking a short hike on the Lycial Trail.
In the afternoon, we head for Gemiler Island (St. Nicholas Island). You can see some ruins around the island visible under clear waters. The island contains remains of several churches, a 350 meters long impressive processional walkway with shops, forty other buildings, and over fifty Christian tombs built between 4th and 5th centuries. At the end of the walkway, at the highest point of the island, there is an impressive rock-hewn church. The view from this high point is incredible. This island was a major stop on the early Christian pilgrimage circuit and the goal was to have pilgrims walk from their boats, up the walkway and into the church with a fanfare of impressive excitement.Archaeologists believe that the original tomb of St. Nicholas (Santa Claus) was located in this church. His relics remained there from his death in 300s AD until 650s. Due to the threats by Arab fleets, they were moved to the town of Myra. Most of the islanders themselves moved to Kayakoy, a village on the mainland.
During part of your stay, you can request that your captain arrange a trip toKayakoy. Kayakoy is only 8 kilometers uphill from theGemiler Island. Your captain can arrange for a van to pick you up at the beach and return after your visit at Kayakoy. Kayakoy (or Levissi as it used to be known) is a deserted village of beautiful stone houses, featured in the Louis de Bernier book, Birds Without Wings. Until 1923, the village population was around 10,000. There were Anatolian Muslims and Greek Orthodox Christians living in this village together, in harmony since the 14th century. But, when the Turkish Independence War ended in 1923, there was a population exchange between Turkey and Greece, and 6,500 Christians had to leave Karakoy. Now, it is a ghost town of abandoned stone houses. It is an eerie and beautiful open air museum, adopted by the UNESCO as a World Friendship and Peace Village.
Overnight at Gemiler Island.
Day 3: Yesilkoy, Kalkan, and Patara Beach
We take off early for Yesilkoy for breakfast and morning swimming. Yesilkoy is famous for its 2000 green houses that produce tomatoes, peppers, aubergines, and zucchini. After Yesilkoy, we head for Kalkan. Kalkan remains a charming and unspoiled town of lush nature withnarrow streets lined with whitewashed stone houses with cascading purple, pink, and red bougainvilleas, cute restaurants with rooftops overlooking the bay and shops, reaching down to the historic harbour, beautifulblue sea and ancient history. With its strict building codes, it keeps the distinctive Ottoman and Greek architecture.
Kalkan’s Ottoman Greek origin can still be seen in its distinctive architecture which is very similar to the architecture of the nearby Greek island of Meis (Castellorizo). There is also a Greek Orthodox church by Kalkan’sharbour which has been converted into a mosque.
After Kalkan, we head to one of the largest (18 kilometers long) and most beautiful beaches of Turkey, Patara Beach, located near the ancient Lycian city of Patara. It is protected as a national park rich in bird life and Lycian ruins. In 2005, Times Online listed Patara Beach as one of the best beaches in the world. It is one of the beaches where sea turtles lay their eggs.
St. Nicholas (Santa Claus) was born in Patara and lived most of his life in the town of Myra (today’s Demre). According to Greek mythology, Apollo spent his winter months in Patara, and the city was said to be founded by Apollo’s son Patarus. It was well known for its natural harbor, the temple of Apollo, and a famous oracle. Patara, as any other Lycian city, has been under many attacks and changed hands: Dorians, Lycians, Syrians, Macedonians under the Alexander the Great, Egyptians, Rhodians, Romans, and later Ottomans.
From the beach, you can walk to some of the ruins. Many of the ruins are still being excavated including the Temple of Apollo. The already-excavated ruins include the parliament building, the oldest lighthouse in the world, and ancient naval and military base fortress, a large necropolis, the arch of Modestus (a Roman triumphal arch), the a harbor bath, a milestone, a central bath, an amphitheatre, a basilica, very impressive temple tombs, Hadrian’s granary, a Roman temple, a Hellenistic era cistern, and a harbor church with its remains emerge from the water.
We overnight in Patara.
Day 4: Kekova Island
In the morning, we head for the Island of Kekova (ancient names: Caravola, Dolichiste), famous for its Lycian sunken city, buried under the Mediterranean after an earthquake in 2nd century AD. The ruins of housesare visible under the multi-shades of blue and green clean waters. Although swimming and diving are prohibited in the area, you may be able to kayak around the ruins.
Across the Kekova Island, with its large tombs of an ancient necropolis half-sunken in the water, a beautiful town called Ucagiz (meaning “three mouths”, ancient name Teimussa) greets you. Ucagiz remains untouched by the tourism explosion, and still carries its charm with old stone houses, cafes, and ancient ruins scattered here and there.
Your boat, will definitely stop at Kale (means “castle”, ancient Lycian name Simena) where you can see the ancient castle at the top of the hill. If you do not want to miss the magnificent view of the area with its gleaming Mediterranean Sea and the island, be sure to take the path up to the castle as you stop to see the small amphitheatre and more stone sarcophagi. Simena dates back to the 4th century.
Overnight in a bay near Kekova Island.
Day 5: Kas
After breakfast, we sail to Kas (means “eyebrow”, ancient names: Habesos,Habesa, and Antiphellos), founded by the Lycians around the 4th century BC. It flourished during the Roman and Byzantine periods and became a sea-faring commerce center.
Kas is a beautiful quaint town with a rocky waterfront and small pebble beaches. The main activity here is diving. There are many underwater caves, ancient ship wrecks, and beautiful sea life including dolphins. You can spend a lazy afternoon in the town square at the teahouses, restaurants, and shops. Take in the beauty of the houses crowned with vibrant-colored bougainvilleas. There are several Lycian sarcophagi (don’t miss the most famous one is called the Lion’s Tomb, carved from a single block of stone) and a 700 hundred year old amphitheatre in the town, still being used for concerts.
Overnight at Kas.
Day 6: CamliBurun Bay and Batikkaya Bay
Another day for beautiful bays and swimming.In the morning, we sail to CamliBurun (means the “point with pine trees”, also called Dactylo Point). Another untouched beauty, it is a rocky point with a giant hole in the rocks, surrounded with hills covered with pine trees. Enjoy the warm sun and the beautiful sea while your lunch is being prepared.
After swimming and lunch, we will sail to Batikkaya Bay for more sun bathing and swimming. Overnight in Batikkaya.
Day 7: Tersane Island
Our last stop as we head for Gocek is Tersane Island, (meaning “Dockyard Island, ancient name: Telandria). It is the largest island in the Gulf of Fethiye, and has a perfect harbor to protect many ships during storms. During the Byzantian and Ottoman times, it was used as a dockyard. You can still see the dockyard rocks lying at the bottom of the sea. There are ruins of two churches and an ancient tomb. One restaurant sits by the end ready to serve you. You can buy local honey, cheese, olives, olive oil, and fresh vegetables. Once in a while, you can hear the goats climbing the hills around the ruins.
Overnight either at Tersane Island or return to 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 gulet charter, your group can decide where to go, where to overnight, where to swim.