It Just Kept Getting Better and Better!

Oludeniz was a short hop away from St Nick’s Island, so it didn’t take us long to get there. The literal translation of Ölüdeniz is “Dead Sea” due to its calm waters but now days the official translation is “Blue Lagoon”, which is much more marketable. In the old days, you used to be able to take your yacht into the lagoon. These days you have to make do with the absurdly looking peddle powered craft, or as we did two standup paddle boards. The place is jam packed with tourists, being rated as one of the best beaches in the world – something a little bit over the top in my opinion.

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We pulled up outside the lagoon and anchored and tied up to the rocks next to a 100 foot motor yacht. There’s not a great deal of room for lots of yachts and it deepens up quite quick so not the greatest anchoring spot around. With a bit of swell running around the corner it was definitely only a day anchorage. Whilst everyone took their turn on the SUPs, battling a bit of a swell and a bit of wind, we watched the paragliders descend from Mount Babadağ, a pretty impressive 2000m mountain right on the coast. Mount Babadağ is rated one of the world’s best paragliding sites – now that I can understand.

Oludeniz done and dusted, it was time to find an anchorage for the night and the one we had picked out was full so in the end with the wind picking up, we just went back to St Nick’s Island.

We had an early morning start the next day to beat all the gullets to Butterfly Bay. The plan worked to perfection as we found the ideal spot in the SE corner of the bay and tied up to the rocks just off the beach, out of the way of the 20 million gullets that will be pulling up to the beach at 10am or so.

Butterfly Bay was a bit down on both water and butterflies but still a very pleasant hike to the waterfall at the end. Everyone thought it would be a nice idea to get breakfast on shore, but after having a look at what was on offer, everybody thought it wa now a good idea to have something to eat back on board La Mischief.

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We had a very pleasant motor sail down to Kalkan… again not much wind…and found a nice spot on the wall at about 2.30pm before the afternoon rush. The wall at Kalkan is a bit pricey – 160TL for the night –but still cheaper than Marina prices.

According to a 2012 survey 96% of visitors to Kalkan were from the UK. Despite this, Kalkan is still a very nice town to visit, slightly upmarket, very picturesque with its old fishing town feel, its famous white-washed houses, descending to the sea, and its brightly coloured bougainvillea. It was an old Greek town before the Christians were compulsorily sent to Greece in the 1920’s.

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We spent the afternoon lazing round the Indigo Blue waterfront bar, just across the breakwater from La Mischief, before hitting the town in the evening for some shopping, eating, drinking and hooka pipe smoking (me excluded).

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Next day it was off to Kekova Roads. It just kept getting better and better!

For pictures of Butterfly Bay and Oludeniz see https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10201973785259136.1073741925.1620379103&type=1&l=22c5cf7d5a

For pictures of Kalkan please see https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10201962554178366.1073741924.1620379103&type=1&l=2647e8a9ec

The Captain’s Excellent Adventure

5am was a bit of a different time to get up. But the Captain said this was the time his Gulet needed to depart so up we got. Shouldn’t complain because it’s a lovely time of the morning.

We pulled anchor and charged off after him. Straight into the wind so no sailing – just motoring. We got to our first stop of the day – Butterfly Bay – just after 9am and anchored off the beach. There was one gullet on shore so we made sure we were clear of him.

Then it was off to explore. We dingied to the beach and were met by a guy who suggested we put some fenders out. Strange.

The main attraction of the bay is a gorge that runs directly behind it, up to a beautiful waterfall. At the head of the gorge is a really cool place with lots of butterflies. Very pretty and worth calling in, even if Rod knows nothing about it.

The walk takes about 30 mins and costs 5TL and on the way back we began to pass heaps and heaps of people. Where did they come from?

We soon found out as when we got back to the beach we found one end of the beach (the north end) completely covered in wall to wall gulets. Unfortunately we were anchored off this end of the beach as well. Now the fender comment made sense. We quickly dingied back to the boat and got out of there fast. Next time it’s the south end of the beach for anchoring.

Next stop was Olu Deniz, a couple of miles north. We anchored around the corner from the Blue Lagoon stern to and had a nice relaxing time swimming and paddle boarding.

The Blue Lagoon is a no go zone for powered craft since 1983, but okay for the paddleboard so I poked my head in and had a look. We also took the dingy in to the adjoining beach and got charged 10TL for the privilege. The lagoon is packed with wall to wall deck chairs along with the usual touristy peddle powered craft with the water slide off the back. They had successfully managed to transform a beautiful looking lagoon into a crass tourist trap. The captain was right when he suggested we swim round the corner and don’t bother going to the Lagoon.

After a nice afternoon swimming, we headed off to the overnight anchorage at St Nicolas Island, a lovely anchorage between the mainland and the island.

Next morning, we headed onto the island to have a look at the extensive ruins dating back to the 7th century AD. Evidently St Nicolas stayed there (obviously on his way to the North Pole). It was quite a stopping off point for the pilgrims on their way to the holy lands. There were about 7 churches on the island, some connected by long tunnels. And the views from on top of the island were to die for. For 10TL entrance fee, this is a must do island.

Sight seeing over, we headed for Fethiye.

For photos of butterfly bay and blue lagoon see https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10201973785259136.1073741925.1620379103&type=1&l=22c5cf7d5a

For photos of kalkan see https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10201962554178366.1073741924.1620379103&type=1&l=2647e8a9ec