|Steve's birthday dinner at Manavgat|
|Departing Manavgat at 0600|
Next morning was Steve's birthday and hence we decided to do a brief tour of Side's historic ruins, followed by a light lunch ashore, and then to simply do a short trip along the coast into the river at Manavgat and dine there that evening, for the celebration. At 1500 we motored out of the harbour, turned left avoiding a fleet of Hobie cats, and headed for the river entrance. After a short stop for a swim near the entrance, we entered via the canalled section and headed inland. By 1730 we were moored up at the restaurant and enjoying a glass of bubbly in the cockpit. This was followed by dinner at 2100 and by 2300 were back onboard for a late night film. Because of the distance to cover the next day, nearly 60 miles, we decided to do a first light departure and thus it was at 0545 we slipped the restaurant's pontoon and headed down river in the eerie light of early dawn. Once out of the river the offshore breeze got us off to a fine start and for the first five hours we averaged 7 knots. It was not to last however. First we were intercepted by a Turkish warship and requested to circumnavigate the submarine exercise area and not cross it as we had intended. Shortly after the wind died away and we were forced to resort to the motor again, fortunately with only 16 miles to go. Not long after the reason for our being requested to clear the area became apparent, six frigates and their helicopters appeared in view, there was obviously some major exercise going on.
|Kurukulla at Finike Marina|
At 1530 we arrived in the anchorage at Cineviz Limani, a quiet anchorage where we planned to spend the night; we gently sailed on to the anchor and set ourselves up for the night. Cineviz has almost no artificial light and so the view of the stars is amazing. It is also a great place for a midnight dip, when there is no moon, as the phosphorescence is also fantastic.
The next day we decided to take advantage of what breeze there was and sailed off the anchor at 1100 heading for Finike marina. It was to be a frustrating start to the day and we arrived at 1700 after a day of intermittent sailing and motoring; however, the final leg across Finike Korfezi (bay) was fantastic; a really good beam reach to finish the day. We had chosen to moor in Finike Marina, as much because I wanted to check out their prices for winter storage as anything else but in the event it was a waste of time. Although they were offering 18 months for the price of 12 or 8 for the price of 6, these were deals afloat and if you added the hard-standing surcharge and their very high lift out and launch costs then, for what I required, they were more expensive than Marmaris. Nothing ventured nothing gained though.....
We had decided to eat ashore and after researching the rather uninspiring town of Finike we settled on a convenient but unpromising restaurant named “Pergole” near the marina, in fact it proved to be a very good choice, the service and food was good and the wine reasonable in price. Next morning we visited the local supermarket for a few essentials and the local open market where we purchased fresh meat and vegetables for the next few days.
From Finike it was off to Gekkoya Limani, an anchorage at the eastern end of Kekova Roads, the inland sea between Kekova Adasi and the mainland. The beat westwards was pleasing and considerably shortened by a favourable wind-shit half way through. The first time this year, that I can remember, where the wind has done us such a big favour! After transiting the anchorage, looking for a quiet spot, we settled on the entrance to the SW creek, anchored in 5m and set about preparing supper which was followed by a film night, on deck.
|Gekkoya Limani with "Surgical Spirit" in the distance|
Next morning I awoke late, 0930, stuck my head out of the hatch to assess the day and was immediately aware that our nearest neighbour, a boat 100m further up the creek, was on the rocks! After a rapid shake of Steve we weighed anchor in haste and set off to tow them off. The boat was named “Surgical Spirit” (owned, we were told, by an eminent back surgeon who was not onboard). They had managed to flatten all of their batteries and had then attempted to sail off the anchor, going on the rocks in the process. Twenty minutes later we had towed them off, re-anchored ourselves and brought them alongside. A quick inspection of their batteries showed that the connections and charging system were in pretty poor shape. The batteries were too large to drop one in Kurukulla's battery stowage and give it a charge (this was only discovered after we had transferred one to Kurukulla, millimetres matter!). In the end we decided that it would be easier to tow them into the centre of Kekova Roads and from there they would sail back to their home port of Kas.
|Cracking along on a beat in Kekova Roads|
|The BBQ fish supper|
An hour later, and a generous gift of a bottle of gin to the good, we slipped the tow and left them to follow in our wake, north-westwards, up the roads. We sailed on ahead until they exited the roads and we continued to the far end anchoring at Polemos Buku, intending to take supper at the Yoruk Ramazan restaurant again. On our arrival we were greeted by another nephew of the owner who was also a keen sailor, his boat was alongside their rather rickety jetty; he was waxing lyrical about the yacht that had tacked all the way up the roads and anchored under sail; we explained to him that that was us! After that we were given VIP treatment and dined on fresh bream cooked on the BBQ, with accompanying salad and chips that Steve described as the best he had tasted since he left home (and his mothers cooking!).
|Steve doing some underwater Archaeolog|
|The walls of Aperlae|
|Passing Kastelloritzon en route Kas|
Next morning we had a leisurely swim and the sailed off the anchor heading for Kalkan, 15 miles to the west but again up-wind. It was a pleasant enough beat with just enough wind to make it interesting and we had the good fortune to just lay the eastern approach without the need to tack through. Our intention had been to go to the anchorage initially, for a late lunch and a swim, before heading into the harbour. The wind thought otherwise! At 400m short of the bay the wind died completely and hence we just drifted for an hour having lunch and swimming before ghosting to the harbour mouth, dropping the sails and motoring in. By 1700 we were secure, inside the harbour, and watching the world go by. Kalkan is a small harbour with a town that thrives on tourism, and unusually for this coast, majority middle aged, British tourists. That evening we set off on a shopping trip only to get way-layed on our return leg by a guy selling paragliding trips, needless to say we fell for it. Ten minutes later we had booked ourselves the first two flights of the next day and retired to a local restaurant for dinner. The Agora restaurant can be highly recommended. The food and service were the best I have experienced in Turkey; the wines were reasonable, even decanted and served with style!
|Steve coming in to land on the road!|
|Kurukulla viewed from the sky|
|Departing Kalkan with the launch spot above the cloud!|
Next day was to be a shorter leg to the inland sea at Skopea Limani where we sailed through the larger of the two access channels ans headed for the anchorage in Tomb Bay, for the second time this year, but this time we anchored in a small cove on the south side which was idyllic. By good fortune we had arrived in the cove as the only other occupant, a large catamaran, was leaving and so had the place almost to ourselves. After a late afternoon swim we had supper on deck followed by another film night; fortunately Steve had arrived with a host of new DVDs' !
At 1000 next day we set sail again, but the time for the 35 mile transit to Marmaris where I needed to pay a quick visit to sort out temporary residence in Turkey before my allowable stay on my present visa expires. The beat to Marmaris was at times frustrating and at other times very enjoyable depending on which trick the wind was to play next. We arrived at 2000 into the anchorage just to the east of the Yacht Marine marina entrance and ghosted onto the anchor inshore of the other anchored boats. Next morning we were to see that we had anchored, purely by chance and in the dark, in the best spot of the anchorage and close to the catamaran, Panthera, whose owners, John and Robyn Combridge were sadly not to be seen; they had very kindly hosted me to drinks onboard in Astypalaia some months previously. Mid morning we motored into the marina and berthed on India pontoon and set about resolving the tasks to be done but not before we had bumped into the owners of "Windsong" who had been the other guests onboard "Panthera" in Astypalaia; a small world again!
More when we leave.....