Sunday, September 12, 2010

Gunkholing in the Med

Gunkholing in the Med

In early September the temperature was finally comfortable enough for us to venture out and did some gunkholing around this coast. This stretch of the Turkish coast is known as one of the best cruising grounds in the Med, with numerous coves and beaches that are very scenic and well sheltered. We started with those that are within a few days sail. Around this time of the year, wind is mostly from the north, and mostly on the nose for going up that way. We went to Cineviz Limani, a beautiful cove just a few hours from Kemer. The Turkish Pilot guide describes this cove: “The deserted bay is magnificent, with awe-inspiring cliffs dropping sheer into the sea….there is no other anchorage on this coast as grand as Cineviz”. We dropped anchor in 5 meters of water, took another stern line to shore to limit the swing, and stayed in this comfortable cove for a few days. At noon the gullets (large wooden charter boats) crowds into the bay with their hoards of tourists, but by evening the secluded bay only has a few cruisers and some small fishing boats. The water is clear and perfect for swimming, and the view wonderful. Fishing is apparently good too, but we have no fishing gears on board.

Another bay we visited was Tekirova. The bay is very picturesque, with a large sandy beach, pine forests, backed by a tall cliff and distant mountains. What makes this location unique is the historical ruins: The ancient Phaselis is just steps away off the beach. Dating back before Roman times, the ruins are fascinating and well preserved, including an ancient harbor, a paved boulevard, theater, Roman aqueduct, and sarcophagi lying around as they fell. We anchored here, and on daybreak we went on shore and walked around the ancient grounds in the morning twilight, sat on top of the theatre watching the morning sun gradually brighten up Mount Solymnus in the distance, probably exactly the way it was seen in 600BC.

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