Fethiye, Short Summer Break in Mediterranean Sea
After found out that I had chronicle back pain in the last June, my summer break was far from expected. I canceled many plans I made, and focused on my therapies and treatment. Therefore, I would not be able to write frequently in the last few months.
Well, thanks God, after few months, the pain reduced and I was almost completely back to normal. Summer was still there, and I wanted to make my first summer in Turkey more memorable. Fortunately, the fortune was on my side. As my birthday gift, my sister got me return ticket to Fethiye, small city in Mediterranean sea region, that offer beautiful beaches and nature. It seems, Sis concerned so much about my back pain and related it to the lack of vacation in the past previous year 🙂
So, I left Istanbul in the late afternoon of Monday. The flight just took one hour to reach Dalaman airport, the nearest airport from Fethiye. I would stay in the downtown for the first three nights before moving to beach areas until the end of my trip. From airport to city center, it would take one hour driving. But don’t worry, since there are airport shuttle busses taking passengers to city center every one hour. I jumped into the bus and arrived in Fethiye an hour later, just thirty minutes before midnight.
Omer, the owner of the guest house where I stayed in was so friendly. He gave me many informations about surrounding neighborhood that has wonderful spots to snap beautiful pictures. I also found the ruin of ancient tombs in some places that are many missed by many travelers. Fethiye itself is not that big. The old city could be explored by walking. Generally, in the city center I just found many shops and nice caffe and restaurants to chill out.
That day was Tuesday, when market day opened in the city. So, I decided to explore my first day by seeing market activities despite I didn’t plan to buy any. I found it’s interesting to visit the local market, to see how the selling and buying activities going and hear people bargaining with their mother language. There are many stuffs sold in the market, such as clothes, hats, accessories, vegetables, food and many more. At the end of the day, I treated myself a big glass of pomegranate juice and Turkish pancake with spinach.
In the afternoon, I walked to Marina, just couple of steps from the guest house, to see if I was lucky enough to snap sunset. Well, here are the results. I thought it’s not bad.
Next following day, Omer arranged the cruise trip for me, called as 12 islands trip. I was not alone, one of traveler from the guest house, named Rami, also joined me for the trip. During this trip, we would be brought to sail and pass 12 islands, where the boat will stop for some islands to let all passengers to swim or just want to walk in the beach. The boat was not so big, quite, without loud music and had nice lunch too. This trip is perfect if you’re not looking for party boat. Rami and I enjoyed the calmness of the sea and I meditated for some moments, enjoying the peace given by God and nature. I personally enjoyed this trip so much and swam at every place we stopped. The water was so blue and calm as swimming pool.
The next day, I moved to the other hotel, a bit far from the city center, around 10 km. My reason to move here was their swimming pool, so I would be able to swim everyday. My back pain require me to swim a lot in order to reduce the pain. The area where I stayed in is called Turkuaz. That’s so quite since surrounding neighborhood is full with summer house and villas that are just visited frequently. But, don’t worry if you want to go to city center. There’s dolmus (public mini bus) passing the neighborhood every one hour from 9 am to 11 pm.
With five minutes walking distance, there’s a private beach where the owner of the place (restaurant) and the hotel management having cooperation. All guests from the hotel could use the chair and umbrella freely, as long as we got some food and drink from the restaurant. It was a good offer though, and the food price is normal and reasonable. I spent some afternoons by chilling there, enjoying the meals while watching the sun went down.
Still impressed with my 12 island tour, I booked another cruise tour from the hotel to Oludeniz, which literally means ‘Dead Sea’, another village in Turkey that has blue lagoon that became center for mass tourism both locally and internationally. Unlike the 12 islands tour, the boat took me to Oludeniz was more like party boat, even though most of passengers were family with children. The boat was bigger with loud music kept singing for the whole trip. The beach and sea where we stopped was so good. Yet, with abundant tourist, I didn’t enjoy that much. Moreover, the sea had more waves made me not so tempted to swim that far.
My last day in Fethiye, I decided to visit Kayakoy, or also known as Ghost town. Don’t worry, I didn’t find any ghost while I was there. Located 10 km from city center, I took dolmus from hotel to Fethiye city center (the exact location is in front of Fethiye Central mosque), and from there I took the other dolmus to Kayakoy. If you want to go to another place in Fethiye, this Central Mosque is the dolmus stop for every dolmus going to other part of Fethiye. During this trip, I met a Vietnamese girl named Quyen. She became my travel mate for the whole day.
Long time ago, Kayakoy was a village occupied by Greek’s Christians and Turks’s Muslims. These people lived peacefully side by side for centuries, helped and respected each other. Nonetheless, after the fall of Ottoman Empire, there was treaty that obliged all Turk Muslims living in Greece must return to Turkey and all Greek’s Christians living in Turkey must return to Greece. Families and friends were separated, and the village was never occupied since Greeks left the village until today. That’s why this place is called as ‘Ghost Town”. It was amazing to imagine how people lived at those years. When I passed it, I imagined people talking with their neighbors, the ring of church’s bell and how noisy the place during the market day.
Since we finished the trip quicker than expected, Quyen asked me to visit Çali Beach. We returned to city center, and from there we took another dolmus to Çali where we got beautiful sunset to snap.