Autumn Arrived During This Shared Cruise to Kekova

Guest List

Crew List

Cruise Highlights

Day 1

Fethiye - Gemiler Island ("Mr. Mark Bay")

  • After everyone arrived onboard, we quickly left the harbour for the 3-hour journey to Gemiler Island. The sea was relatively calm and our guests spent the time getting to know one another. This is a friendly group and we suspect they will become fast friends!
  • Upon arriving at Gemiler Island, Captain Oktay made the decision to anchor away from the other boats, and selected a secluded spot for the night. We've named it "Mister Mark Bay" in honour of Mark's birthday today!
  • Terry was first into the water, Barb was second, and Karen was third. According to everyone's reports, the water was warmer than expected, and lovely and refreshing.
  • A dinner of barbecued sea bass was served under a full moon.
  • We had an early night as Day 2 of this route requires a very early wake-up call.
map of day 1 of the cruise route

Click to expand.

Day 2

Gemiler Island - Kalkan

  • Anchors we up at 5:30AM and we made the semi-rough 5-hour journey towards Kalkan. (Conditions calmed down as we passed Patara Beach.)
  • Breakfast was served as we approached Furnoz Bay near Kalkan. Captain Oktay and the crew secured the boat as we hunkered down for a wind storm predicted for later in the day.
  • There was plenty of time for swimming and enjoying the water as we stayed at Furunoz Bay for the remainder of the day. The wind storm came and went, but everyone was cozy on the boat.
map of day 2 of the cruise route

Click to expand.

Day 3

Kalkan - Kaş - Aquarium Bay - Unnamed Bay in the Kekova Region

  • We lifted anchor before breakfast and made the bumpy journey to a small bay just outside of Kaş for breakfast. After the meal, we moved to a spot closer to the harbour entrance and everyone hopped into the dinghy to enjoy a 90 minute visit to Kaş. Sea conditions were less than ideal, but everyone made the journey ashore without falling into the sea or dropping anything overboard.
  • In Kaş, we visited several shops, explored the Kaş theatre, stopped by a Hellenistic temple, and ate ice cream. Captain Oktay asked us to return to the boat a bit earlier than first planned to avoid bad weather that was approaching.

Today's Important Life Lesson
"Perhaps the most fundamental difference between a Roman amphitheatre and a Roman theatre is the shape, theatres have a semi-circular arrangement of raised seating looking into a stage, whereas an amphitheatre is a 'theatre in the round' – amphi is Greek for around."
source - Archaeology Travel

  • Once everyone was safely aboard, we headed onward, planning to reach Kekova region by mid-afternoon. A brief thunderstorm forced us to take cover in Aquarium Bay for protection for about an hour, but we continued the journey to Kekova when the storm passed, and anchored in a gorgeous little un-named cove near Simena castle for the night.
  • The rainstorm was the first major one of the season, and didn't disappoint. Thunder and lightning accompanied the rain - which flooded the bathroom of cabin number 4. Barb and Rob accepted the soggy conditions with good grace, for which we are extremely thankful.
  • There's a saying "when it rains, it pours" and today was no exception. In addition to the flooded bathroom, the new dinghy lost it's foward gear and Hamdi was forced to use the old dinghy to tie up in the driving rain. Then the stove gave us some difficulty! Trouble comes in threes, so we're hoping that's the last of it for this season!
  • We spent the evening in the Kekova region, enjoying the privacy of our own little cove. (Any name suggestions for this lovely little spot?) Captain Oktay prepared Adana Kebabs (spiced ground beef and lamb on sticks) on the barbecue.
map of day 3 of the cruise route

Click to expand.

Day 4

Kekova Region - Demre Harbour - Myra - St. Nicholas Church - St. George Bay (Gökkova Region)

  • After breakfast in the most gorgeous spot in Kekova, we made our way to Demre harbour where the boat was anchored for most of the day. Sue and our guests headed out on a land excursion, and Captain Oktay organized repairs for the stove and dinghy. Chef Savaş and Sailor Hamdi stayed on board, cleaning the boat and organizing supplies for the second half of the cruise.
  • The land excursion took us, first, to Myra where we ogled the incredible rock tombs of the ancient Lycians and then clambored around the restored theatre designed to hold 30,000 to 50,000 people. After that, we made our way to the St. Nicholas Church Museum, which is the site where St. Nicholas of Myra (aka Santa Claus) was the bishop. Then lunch, and we all decided to return to the boat.
  • Dinghy repairs took a bit longer than anticipated, but we took advantage of the calm water in tiny Demre harbour to pull out the paddle boards and give them a try. Terry was a natural, but Karen and Margaret gave an impressive showing too. Way to go, everyone!
  • The repair man was able to fix the dinghy and return it to us around 5PM, so we lifted anchor and made the short trip to the Gökkova region for the night. Along the way, we passed a pirate cave, and anchored in another exclusive bay which we call St. George's Bay. It was a wonderful spot to spend the evening - and Chef Savaş amazed us all with a flaming clay pot of Ottoman Kebab (beef stew) for dinner!
map of day 4 of the cruise route

Click to expand.

Day 5

Gökkova Region - Simena Castle - Sunken City of Kekova - Üçağız - Bayınder Bay (Kaş)

  • We enjoyed a leisurely breakfast and time for swimming before lifting anchor and heading to Simena castle for a morning climb. Pauline stayed on board to take photos of the group from the boat, and Sue escorted Terry, Margaret, Karen, Mark and Barb to the peak of the castle. Tim and Rob secured seats at Ankh Cafe, so we'd have space in the tiny bar / restaurant to enjoy home-made ice cream after the climb.
  • After returning to the boat, Captain Oktay took us on a tour along the edge of Kekova Island. This environmentally protected area is known as the Sunken City of Kekova - and features the ruins of an ancient harbour town which is partially submerged under water.
  • Then we made our way to the tiny fishing village of Üçağız, where we had to wait for a while to fill our fresh water tanks.
  • Water tanks full, we made our way westward, anchoring at Bayınder Bay just outside of Kaş, where we spent the evening enjoying good food (barbecued chicken!), good drinks (a specially curated selection of reds and whites in clear and green bottles), and fantastic new friendships!
map of day 5 of the cruise route

Click to expand.

Day 6

Bayınder Bay (Kaş) - Kalkan - Furnoz Bay

  • We lifted anchor after a leisurely breakfast and made the 2 hour journey to Kalkan where our guests headed ashore to do some shopping. Everyone agreed that Kalkan is a lovely little town - but HILLY!
  • After shopping, we hopped across to Furnoz Bay for the remainder of the day.
map of day 6 of the cruise route

Click to expand.

Day 7

Furnoz Bay - Butterfly Valley - Ölüdeniz - Gemiler Island - Tarzan Bay

  • Day 7 was another long cruising day but the sea conditions were lovely and calm. We lifted anchor in the dark, and started the journey towards Ölüdeniz just as the sun was peeking over the nearby mountains. Captain Oktay made a detour so we could enjoy the sight of the sunrise streaming into Butterfly Valley and the white sand beach at Ölüdeniz, and then we continued on to Gemiler Island for the day.
  • After breakfast, most of the group enjoyed a hike around historic Gemiler Island, and then everyone enjoyed sunshine and sea for the afternoon.
  • Around 4:30, we lifted anchor for the final leg of the day - a 2 hour jaunt to Tarzan Bay, where we spent our final evening together. Captain Oktay and Chef Savaş prepared our final fish meal - sea bream and all the fixings - in the busy little bay.
map of day 7 of the cruise route

Click to expand.

Day 8

Tarzan Bay - Fethiye Harbour

  • After last swims and the final breakfast of our cruise, the crew lifted anchor and we returned to Fethiye Harbour. The event-filled week together fostered new friendships and some tears were shed during our farewells - proof again that people may come aboard Arkadaslik as strangers, but always leave as friends.
map of day 8 of the cruise route

Click to expand.

I honestly can't remember which day we ate the green bean casserole, but here's a link to the recipe. And here's the link to our carrot tarator recipe.

Download Gallery