Our last few days were spent on a fabulous sailing cruise with V-GO Yachting Company, http://www.bluecruisesturkey.com, from Olympos to Fethiye on the southwestern coast of Turkey on the Mediterranean. This trip made it into our top 5 travel experiences so far as we had a blast! This has to do with the dynamic of all the passengers, the personable boat crew and the weather.
From Cappadoccia we took a 10-hour night bus to Antalya, immediately hopped another 2-hour minibus to Olympos. Arriving at 7AM at their main bus stop we had an apple tea with Turkish pancakes to wait for the shuttle bus to Bayram’s Treehouse, where we had reservations. It was unclear when the shuttles started running so ended up hitching a ride with a local down the Olympos valley. Along this valley road are many pensions and treehouses to stay in. Our stay in the treehouse was simple, including breakfast, dinner and a lovely bonfire. You might be thinking, why would you stay in a treehouse? Well, it really isn’t a treehouse as our room had an air conditioner, electricity and it was not in a tree but it was made of wood…..does that make it a treehouse?
Before the cruise started we had a day at Olympos beach, which has Roman ruins along the beach. Ancient archways, tombs and churches lined the walk up to the rock beach. The water was so amazingly clear since there is not much tidal movement. It is also extraordinarily salty which makes you extra buoyant. There is also a natural phenomenon called the Chimaera flames on the mountainside in Olympos, which are a dozen flames coming from a mass of rock with no apparent fuel to sustain them. They have been burning for hundreds to thousands of years.
The next day we started our cruise and immediately the boat broke down and we thought we might be in for a long 4 days! It turned quite the opposite as this first hour waiting for parts we all began our bonding. Throughout the cruise we visited a Sunken City, which was half on land and half in the water from an earthquake 2,000 years ago. Simena, the still existing part of the city, was visited to hike up to a castle and ancient tombs. We swam into Pirates Cave, which was so cool and visited the town of Kas. Pretending he was invincible, Zane was pleased to be able to cliff jump, rope swing, spearfish and do back flips of the boat! Beers in Blue Lagoon while paragliders flew overhead was a great afternoon as well.
The second morning we woke for sunset and moved from our cabin to the top deck to continue our sleep and witness an amazing sunrise as we cruised along. Our last night bundled up on the top deck in our sleeping bags, blankets and jackets for the chance to sleep under the stars and in fresh air, simply remarkable.
The group on our boat was mainly Americans who were living in Istanbul, some American travelers and a great Aussie couple on their 6 month honeymoon. There was an interesting dynamic of having 2 deaf girls on board. It was fascinating to watch them sign to each other, or sit and have conversations while passing a notebook back and forth with other passengers. The last evening music was playing and they were tapping their foot as they could feel the base of the music. The skipper cranked up the music for them and it turned into a full out dance party, combined with games and challenges testing our flexibility. To see the joy in the girls’ faces while dancing and laughing was indescribable.
As the boat was being docked we all starred at the shore in a sadden manner as none of us wanted the cruise to end. After our hugs and goodbyes we ended in Fethiye where we spend the evening at a nice family pension overlooking the bay before moving on to Pamukkale.
More Pics: https://picasaweb.google.com/105315223482012434599/Cruise?authkey=Gv1sRgCNLwz6iFsa21Zw