Burning rocks, treehouses, gulet cruising, paragliding, parasailing, hiking and a bit of lounging around....
28.08.2011 34 °C
From Cappadocia we headed south to Olympos on the Med coast. We were here to stay in the tree houses and start our Blue Cruise on a gulet (Turkish yacht).
Olympos is more a destination than a township. Essentially it is a collection of hostels either side of a dusty little road at the bottom of a mountain range on the coast. The idea is that you stay in a 'treehouse' though there are very few actual treehouses- most places offer little shacks neatly lined up in rows. It had a bit of a school camp feeling to the place - but is certainly a nice place to chill out. The beach itself is pebbly but pretty spectacular, and there are ancient Roman ruins on your way into the beach.
Bayrams at Olympos - purpose built for chilling out.
A local attraction worth visiting is Chimaera- the burning rocks. This is a natural phenomenon due to leaking methane gas seeping out of the ground.
From Olympos we jumped on our yacht, Marmotte - our accommodation and transport for the next 4 days. This was certainly a highlight of the trip - the water was immaculate, the food on the boat was great, and the boat itself was sensational.
Shorty and I walking the plank
The Sunken City
Video of the Blue Cruise passing by Kekova (Sunken City). You can imagine how tough 4 days of this was...
Sunrise from the Gulet
Marmotte, second from the left
Our boat trip took us from Demre (they don't actually start from Olympos- you get picked up from Olympos and driven 1 hr further down the coast). Our first night was spent tucked into a quiet bay. Shorty and I went parasailing here. Awesome fun!
Next day was past the Sunken City and onto Kaş - a pretty little village full of cobbled stoned streets and BLOOMING bougainvillea.
A Turkish haircut was an interesting experience in Kaş. My barber was a 13 year old boy, who spoke a little bit of English, and actually did a great job. 15 Lira got me a haircut, face massage, and a special ear hair removal using a huge, flaming cotton bud (q-tip). My barber, clearly enjoying this part of his job, advised me this is known as a "Turkish BBQ, HAHA!"
Unfortunately due to large swell, we weren't able to make it via boat all the way to Fethiye. Instead, we finished in Kalkan and bused to Fethiye. From here we went south back to Kabak. This place was a real highlight. We extended our stay here to 4 days as soon as we arrived. The Olive Grove is the nicest place I have ever stayed at - anywhere. Bugalows set in a remote location overlooking an amazing coastline, owned by Chef Fatih who cooks the best meals in Turkey - with ingredients from the surrounding gardens. Amazing.
The Olive Grove, and the beach below, Kabak
During our time in Kabak we went paragliding in Oludeniz, hiked a bit of the Lycian Way, visited Butterfly Valley (and climbed out of it!), and Shorty managed to adopt a teeny tiny kitten and teach some locals how to feed it...
Lara Croft climbing out of Butterfly Valley
From Kabak we moved North to Selcuk, the closest town to Ephesus. Ephesus lived up to the hype, though was overun with tourists.
The city of Ephesus
From there it was back to Istanbul for the last couple of days of the trip. We spoiled ourselves at one of Istanbuls best restaurants Mikla. An epic meal and highly recommended - the rooftop bar was the best we found.
From here it was home and back to the grind.
Thanks for reading and your comments.. until next time.