Suzanne's plans for this epic family reunion have been in the works for quite a while. We're delighted to host her celebration of life and love with far-flung family.
Day 1 - Julio's Day
- We left Göcek harbour as soon as Genevieve arrived at the boat. (Everyone else in the group flew in last night.)
- Captain Oktay took us to Summer Harbour Bay at Tersane Island for lunch and a quick swim about 30 minutes outside of the harbour.
- At lunch, Suzanne honoured her parents before the group enjoyed their first meal together on the boat.
- From there, we headed across the Gulf of Fethiye to the day's final destination, Gemiler Island. Suzanne surprised her family with a drive up Mount Babadağ, the 1700 meter mountain overlooking Ölüdeniz that is particularly popular with paragliders. After enjoying the magnificent sunset, the group returned to Arkadaslik for a lovely dinner of barbequed sea bream.
Day 2 - Chanel's Day
- Happy Canada Day!!!
- The crew woke early for the first leg of today's journey. We lifted anchor around 5AM and made the 5 hour trip to Kalkan, where we stopped for breakfast and a swim.
- After the breakfast table was cleared, we made our way to the Greek island of Meis, slowing down to examine an underwater mountain with peaks just a few metres below the surface of the sea.
- As we approached Meis, Sailor Selim changed the boat's flag from Turkish to Greek as a sign of respect for entering the foreign water.
- The group enjoyed a lovely seafood lunch overlooking the Meis harbour and iced coffee before heading back to the boat.
- Continuing eastward for another 2 hours, we slowly cruised past the Sunken City of Kekova before heading to the Gökkaya region, our final anchorage of the day. Chanel and Julio were thrilled to finally use the stand-up paddle boards, and everybody enjoyed fun time in the water.
- Everyone is exhausted this evening as we completed nearly 10 hours of cruising, covering nearly 100km. What a wonderful day!
Day 3 - Genevieve's Day
- The day started out with a bit of excitement when Chanel, Julio, Genevieve and Eric enjoyed a ringo ride around the Gökkaya region. Sailor Selim rode in the tow boat and took fabulous photos.
- After leaving our overnight anchorage, Captain Oktay took us to a pirate cave, big enough that the front of the boat fit inside! After visiting the cave, we headed to beautiful Furunoz Bay on the south side of Kekova island for a while, where Julio and Chanel climbed the rocky cliffs surrounding the cove and "almost" made it to the mouth of another pirate cave.
- After lunch, we cruised past the Simena castle and stopped at the tiny village of Uçağiz for a while to fill the fresh water tanks. It was very windy, so Captain Oktay took us to a protected cove for dinner and overnight. The cove is beautiful, overlooked by a small castle-like building, and an ancient settlement lies just beyond the coastline. We nicknamed it "San Lorenzo Bay".
- Once dinner was finished and the crew completed their evening chores, Sailor Selim and Chef Ozan brought out their fishing gear. Chef Ozan caught a calamari!
Day 4 - Laurent's Day
- Waking up in "San Lorenzo Bay" was pretty special. Goats dropped by for a visit, and we got the drone out to take some pictures of the area.
- After breakfast, we lifted anchor and headed to the foot of the Simena castle for some time to explore the castle village.
- Castle explorations complete, Captain Oktay piloted Arkadaslik through some windy weather for a few hours while we cruised to Binder Bay outside of Kaş.
- We hopped on a water taxi for a quick trip into Kaş for sightseeing, Turkish ice cream, and drinks before heading back to the boat for the evening.
- Another seafood feast for dinner - including calamari caught by Ozan earlier in the week. Très magnifique!
Day 5 - Eric's Day
- This was a slower paced day, starting with a relaxed breakfast at Binder Bay just outside Kaş, then a 2-hour cruise to a bay outside of Kalkan.
- Sea conditions were perfect for capturing video of our passage through newly-named "Suzanne Strait".
- Rather than head into Kalkan town, the group elected to spend the afternoon in a nearby bay, swimming, paddle-boarding, kayaking, and relaxing.
- Eric hosted a "Dîner en Blanc" - everyone wore white (including crew!) - and shared stories of love, life, and laughter well into the night.
Day 6 - Claude's Day
- Day 6 was another early morning start, as Captain Oktay started the boat at 5AM for the long and bumpy ride to Ölüdeniz. (Unfortunately, sea conditions prevented a stop at Butterfly Valley.)
- After breakfast and some time for enjoying the water near the Blue Lagoon, we lifted anchor again for the short (30 minute) hop to Gemiler Island.
- Lunch and dinghy-driving lessons for Chanel and Julio in the channel between Gemiler Island and the mainland.
- Late in the afternoon, we lifted anchor for the final stretch of the day - 2 hours to Tarzan Bay (named because of the ropes hanging from the trees over the water).
- Steak dinner followed by a chance to hang memory strips on the Arkadaslik "Congratulations" banner.
Day 7 - Suzanne's Day
- After breakfast and a swim, we made the trip into Fethiye to drop the group off at their harbour-side hotel.
- There were many hugs and a few tears as the Rolland family disembarked for the second week of their family adventure in Turkey.