Day 1 - Bodrum
Bodrum is the ideal starting point for sailing the Aegean coast of Turkey. The Gökova Gulf is acknowledged to be one of the best cruising areas in Europe. With abundant sunshine, crystal clear waters, continuous blue skies, good anchorages and friendly people, this coast offers many diversities. There are many unspoiled areas rich in natural beauty and in costal settlements and villages. Bodrum is a port city in Muğla Province, in the southwestern Aegean Region of Turkey. It is located on the southern coast of Bodrum Peninsula, at a point that checks the entry into the Gulf of Gökova. The city was called Halicarnassus of Caria in ancient times and was famous for housing the Mausoleum of Mausolus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Bodrum Castle, built by the Crusaders in the 15th century, overlooks the harbour and the marina. The castle grounds include a Museum of Underwater Archaeology and hosts several cultural festivals throughout the year.
Day 2 - Orak Island, Cokertme Bay
Orak Island, located 10 miles to the east of Bodrum, is famous for its rich marine life and crystal blue waters. It is a popular point where yachts and boats on Gokova tours do not pass without stopping. The island stretches opposite of the Kargicik Inlet and has indented shores covered with olive trees in the lower slopes of the hills. There is no settlement on the island but there are sheltered coves that you can anchor at in the north. To its east, the sea looks like an aquarium. Tea will be served in Yaliciftlik Bay. An optional village tour can be arranged from this bay for those who are wishing to experience the local life.
Cokertme, mentioned in the local folk songs, is an important stopover before or after crossing the Gökova Gulf. Çökertme Bay derives its name from the small village located along its side. Çökertme Bay is situated between Kepce Burnu and Karaburun and is a sheltered place for spending the night. It is well known amongst the boatsmen community because of the fact that it protects the boats against the winds especially those blowing from the west-north and west-east direction. The Çökertme coastline is long and spotted with rows of pine and olive trees. The location has several local restaurants offering delicious food to tourists at affordable rates. Visitors can also enjoy spectacular belly dancing performances at night!
Day 3 - Seven Islands, Kufre Bay, Long Port, English Harbour
One of the ideal stops during the Blue Cruise is at the Seven Islands, a secluded bay to the south of Tuzla. It is an ideal spot for swimming, snorkelling, fishing and sponge diving. Holidaymakers love to collect harpoon fish and sponges here. You can visit the natural harbour of Kufre or take a leisurely walk on the shore through the Gulluk Forest. The southern shore of the Gulf of Gokova in front of the four islands is covered with lush pine forests that spread across miles along the shore and between the two a natural gulf is created. You can anchor between the islands or inside a cove and rest in calm in any weather condition. On the west is the bare island of Martil. To the south and the east, there are beautiful beaches where you can swim or simply relax, basking in the sun. Other islands include the Long Island, Olive Island, and the Small Islands. Not all beaches are steep and rocky, although the islands are mostly barren. But if you are a nature lover, you can enjoy a nice trail in the cove areas covered with pine trees. Çamaltı, Single-Port (Gökağaç Inlet), Karağaç port, the port of Long, Dark and Göllü Küfre cove and island are the most important anchoring points in the Seven Islands. All the bays are linked to one another through quaint dirt paths.
You can visit the natural harbour of Kufre or take a leisurely walk on the shore through the Gulluk Forest. The southern shore of the Gulf of Gokova in front of the four islands is covered with lush pine forests that spread across miles along the shore and between the two a natural gulf is created. You can anchor between the islands or inside a cove and rest in calm in any weather condition.
Long Port indents to the east for about 1000m, narrows and ends by a pool. The entry is about 130 m wide and it makes a large bay after the entry. Laced coves in the bay are fully covered by pine trees. The settings are impressive.
English Harbor, according to the locals, British naval vessels were hidden at this English Harbor during World War II. During the German occupation of the Greek Islands, two British military aircraft with skeletons of the pilots were discovered by Turkish divers at the English Harbor. It is suggested that these two aeroplanes were shutdown by German anti-craft guns form the nearby Greek Islands in 1942.
Day 4 - Sedir Island, Karacasogut
Cleopatra Island (Sedir Island-Cedrae) is located around 18 km north of Marmaris. Cleopatra Island is also known as Sedir Island or City Island and is famous with its golden sandy beach known as Cleopatra Beach and the ancient city of Cedrae. The remnants of the city walls can be seen on this island. It is also famous for its ancient theatre ruins. There is an interesting beach on the small bay, north-west of the island. If folklore is to be believed, Cleopatra and Antonius swam here and the sands were brought by the ships from North Africa! It is also believed that this type of sand can only be seen in Egypt. The ruins on the eastern side of the island stand for the era of the Romans. The theatre area is in good condition. On this very site is also Agora, where athletics festivals used to be organized in the honour of Apollo, according to some epigraphs.
Karacasogut is a wonderful bay. The forest hugs the sea and everywhere is full of rhododendrons. The mountains there are covered with pine trees, and there is a styrax forest close to shore. The trees in this forest are quite wild and unusual. It’s worth-while to eat at the restaurants and take a walk there. The scenery from the hills is very impressive.
Day 5 - Longoz, Tuzlu Bay
Longoz has the most beautiful bays in the Gulf of Gokova. They descend from the steep hills and seem to roll down into the sea with the exception of a long row of trees that separates its contour from the waters. Here you can enjoy nature at its best! Winds blow from all directions and present the perfect conditions for medium-sized yachts looking for a mooring place to anchor in the saltwater lake or in the island.
Tuzla is a charming fisherman’s village known for its restaurants and specialities with fresh sea products. There are a lot of small farmers, tree nurseries and bee-keepers. The shallow water attracts wading birds and other wildlife. It is an area of outstanding beauty and players of the noble game of Gulf will love this area as it has been chosen for the development of a number of Gulf courses.
Day 6 - Kargili Bay, Kise Buku
This is a pretty bay for you to drop anchor and while away the time. The thick pine surroundings come right down to the water's edge and it's a great place to swim and laze on your yacht. The bay has good shelter and is very peaceful, the perfect place to finish that book you have been meaning to read.
Located only 3 miles away from Orak Island is Kise Buku (Alakisla Buku), a name originating from the word ‘kilise’ (church) due to the remains of the Byzantine Monasteries found in this area. It is indispensable for all boats to anchor here at a very large cove. This bay is surrounded by mountains in the north, and western winds blow in the eastern side of the island against. At Alakisla, you will encounter the ruins of an old monastery by the name of Kise Bay. Kise's name is also believed to originate from the word ‘church’. The must-visit places in the Kisebükü ruins include Yalıkoyu, Akarca, Fork, summerhouse, bath, cistern and the cove where the ruins of the church are found. These call for an indispensable stop during your Blue Cruise. In a few coves in the vicinity, you can find wonders like cold drinking water boiling! The silhouette of a grove of Oleander trees rolling down into the sea against the glittering sandy beaches is indeed a spectacle to behold!
Day 7 - Papuc Burnu, Yaliciftlik
Located 6 miles from Bodrum and resembling the shape of a nose is Pabuc Burnu, suitable for boats to dock. The unique shape covered with shrubs, the emerald-coloured waters and a string of pool-like boat shelters with calm water are the hallmarks of Pabuc Burnu.
Yaliciftlik is located outside of Bodrum peninsula and 30 km from the city centre. It is surrounded by secluded small bays, crystal clear sea and beautiful pine forests. Through beautiful pine forests on a winding road past whitewashed cisterns is the beach at Yaliciftlik. This shingle beach has several restaurants and cafes around it, serving good inexpensive delicious foods. The eastern end of the beach is sandy and it is possible to swim and sunbathe in solitude by the rocks a bit further on.
Yaliciftlik is probably one of the best-preserved places around the peninsula of Bodrum. Untouched by tourism, the village offers an interesting insight into real local farming life.
Day 8 - Bodrum
We will leave the boat by 10:30 after breakfast.