For our first sail with Jim and Tina, we chose Ciftlik, less than 12 miles south of Marmaris, but we ended up logging 16 miles after beating into the wind.  It was an interesting sail.  We started off at about noon with about 1.5 knots of wind and ended up with 15 – 20 knots by 3pm.  We have come to realize that late morning/afternoon onshore winds are the norm in this part of Turkey, during late summer/autumn.  There is usually very little or no wind in the morning, then it picks up in the afternoon and dies down around 6 pm, with offshore winds in the evening.

The bay of Ciftlik is lined with jetties, each owned by a restaurant/hotel and, we found, each with someone waving and beckoning us to dock at their jetty.  We chose Azmak and were lucky to be able to dock alongside the jetty, rather than having to drop our anchor and go stern to the dock.  As long as we ate at the restaurant, which of course we did, there was no charge for dockage or electricity …. and the prices in the restaurant were very reasonable, what a great system!

Ciftlik – our first taste of docking on a restaurant-owned pier in Turkey

Our sail across the bay next day to Ekincik was an easy 20 mile downwind sail under genoa alone in 12 – 24 knots.  This time we dropped our anchor and went stern to the town dock in the NW corner of the bay, dodging gullets doing the same exercise in the process!  Fortunately there was someone from the nearby Incelar restaurant to take our shorelines.  So, guess where we ate that night …. but this time we had to pay for electricity.  It was still a great deal.

Next morning we took a boat trip up the Köycegiz (Dalyan) River about 5 miles further along the coast.  It was a fascinating trip, entering the river across the sand bar, passing the turtle rescue station, then winding our way through the marshes to the town of Dalyan where we saw a turtle, stopped for refreshments and could see the Lycean-style rock tombs carved out of the cliffs high above (see photo at the top of this blog).  The highlight of the trip was a (rather hot) hike up to the ancient city of Kaunos where there were ruins of a theatre, baths and temple, all of Roman origin, as well as a 6th century church.  Kaunos is considered to be at the border between the Carian and Lycian cultures with original settlements dating from around 800 – 400 BC.

The Dalyan river marshes
Jim keeping fit on our way to Dalyan
First sight of Kaunos
Helenistic/Roman theatre at Kaunas overlooking the Dalyan river.

Our next blog will focus on our experiences in Fethiye Körfezi…..