A Turkish Blues Cruise12/13/2010
I spent almost two months in the great country of Turkey, ending on Aug. 3rd of this year. One of my greatest memories from that trip is the Blues Cruise from Fethiye to Olympos.
The Blue Cruise is a cheap way to charter a small yacht for 4 days/3nights and sail the Mediterranean Sea. (I think I paid just under $200 for the whole experience). The boat takes you to various Greek islands along the path for swimming, snorkeling, good eating, and exploring. A truly unique, incredible experience!
I arrived in Istanbul on June 9th, immediately noticing fliers covering the hostel’s wall. Turkey was a country I did very little planning for, preferring to make my plans along the way. I wanted to mix things up a bit and do things I hadn’t yet done. Chartering a yacht was high up on the totem pole.
I did some research, liked what I saw, and received 2nd and 3rd opinions from travelers who recently returned from a Blues Cruise adventure. They couldn’t be happier from their recent experiences. I knew then that before I left Turkey I was going to charter a yacht. My goal was to recruit other travelers with me to share the adventure.
Distractions took over and I temporarily suspended my pursuit of boarding a yacht. I made a short trip to Africa to live one of my childhood dreams, watching a World Cup game live. Here’s some of what went on, outlined on a previous post: My Favorite Place in the World.
After three weeks in Africa, I flew back to Istanbul for some unfinished business.
My spontaneous planning led me along the western Turkish coast to Gallopili, Troy, Ephesus, and then Bodrum. Bodrum is where I’d finally get serious about the Blue Cruise.
In Bodrum I became good friends with two young British girls on their first backpacking trip. They were both very outgoing and I got along well with them.
One night, on the outdoor terrace of Bodrum Backpackers, I dropped my plans for chartering a yacht to Emma and Laura. In my typical Texas charm, I wanted to see if they wanted to spend a few more days listening to my downloaded Chuck Norris jokes and talking about life on the high seas.
I somehow got them to agree and we booked a bus to Feithye the next day. After spending one more day in Feithye, we finally boarded our long awaited journey on the yacht.
The Blues Cruise
There were about 20 total people on cruise, all different age ranges.
Here’s the best group photo I could find.
The food was first class. One evening we enjoyed freshly captured fish, the next day an assortment of homemade pasta and organic veggies. Breakfasts included eggs, sausage, toast, fruit, and tomatoes, with coffee or tea to drink. All of the meals were included in the price of the cruise!
I remember the sunny days as relaxing and stress free as one can imagine. My afternoons were spent basking in the sun while reading a book or eyes closed enjoying music as we slowly made our way to the next island.
Once arrived at our destination, we had the opportunity to swim, dive, snorkel, or mingle with others at the beach. I forgot how to NOT smile.
The nights on the calm seas were just as intense!
After dinner, we played various card games while sipping on some fine wine and local beers. Stories, jokes, and travel ideas were shared throughout those nights.
The last night we were dropped off at a local island bar to relieve some built up stresses from that yacht. (Ha, I can’t imagine anyone having any stress issues at the time!)
The bar was jamming to 80s and 90s American hits sprinkled in with today’s finest pop songs. I had been gone for so long I lost touch of what was “popular” back home.
We had a good time to say the least.
All things must come to an end and after 4 days and 3 nights, the yacht adventure was over.
Chartering the Blue Cruise yachts was one of the highlights of my trip and I made some great friends out of it. I said my goodbyes to Laura, Emma, and the rest of the crew. (Though I would see Laura and Emma again in Dalyan).
The Turkish yacht crew did a fantastic job of making sure our experience was first class. The boat was very secure and they did their best to get to know each traveler.
I highly recommend embarking on our own Blue Cruise in Turkey. Go with some friends, family, or solo if need be and you will have one unforgettable experience!