When we were planning our cruising of the Turquoise coast, Jim suggested we could easily spend at least 4 nights in Fethiye Bay. He was right and we can certainly understand why Jim and Tina love to come back year after year to cruise these waters. This bay in particular, surrounded by vast cliffs and tree-lined terrain, has an indented coast and islands on either side of it but with enough space to be able to have a lovely sail across it (when the afternoon wind fills in) in flat seas. There is no need to go far, just enjoy the sail and pick one of the many anchorages/berthing options.
Our first stop was Kapi Creek where we docked stern-to the restaurant dock at the S. end of the bay. It was a good place to enjoy a swim off the dock, have a little wander around and then relax and enjoy the evening.
Of course we had to go to Fethiye, having heard about it for years. We stopped for lunch and a swim in Boynuz Buku on the way. Once in Fethiye we docked at the Yacht Classic Hotel, beyond the large Ece Marina. Jim said they had upped their prices in recent years but it was still good value with 50% discount on mooring if you ate at the restaurant, which we did the first night. We certainly enjoyed the up-market facilities ashore, including the use of the wonderful pool.
The town, which was flattened by the 1958 earthquake, still has character, particularly in the market area where there are many stalls with handmade rugs, dried fruits and nuts, a wide variety of turkish delight, etc., as well as a great fish market and a small fruit and veg market. The experience of eating in the fish market is not to be missed! We chose our fish from one of the stalls in the center, then took it to one of the many surrounding restaurants where we chose a variety of starters and they cooked our fish for us.
The next day, we headed back across the bay to Wall Bay, intending only to stay for lunch but ended up staying for the night because we loved it so. The floating docks were new and, because we got in early, we had a nice berth alongside. Once ashore, we found the restaurant had been significantly upgraded with landscaping, stone paths and patio, solid wooden tables, marble-lined toilet/shower facility, etc. For lunch we ordered two pidas that turned out to be very tasty and filling so we booked a table for dinner and had an afternoon swim off the little beach. There were plenty of gulets and other yachts surrounding the bay with a line ashore. Later in the afternoon a large vessel sporting the name, Migros, one of the large supermarkets here, hung around in the middle of the bay and suddenly dinghies made their way to it, obviously to stock up on their supplies.
Our last stop in Fethiye Bay was in Gocek. Tina warned us it would be hot because it is sort of in a south-facing bowl but fortunately we were assigned a berth on the outer dock in the marina (D Marin, pictured above) so we had a cooling breeze most of the time. It just was a bit bumpy at times and the most expensive marina so far in Turkey but with great facilities. Gocek is a charming yacht port with multiple marinas to choose from and lots of restaurants, but clearly has had quite a lot of fairly tasteful development in recent years. We also came across another boat in the marina named Mazu, a very smart boat a bit beyond our budget. Gocek used to be a sleepy fishing village which also exported chromium, from the nearby mine. Some now call it the ’Monaco’ of Turkey, following its expansion into a yachting haven and up-market destination.
Sorry the blogs have been slow coming of late …. watch this space for the next installment.