Life On Board, Hikes, Food, People, History, Accommodation
Life On Board, Hikes, Food, People, History, Accommodation
As far as trip highlights go, gulet sailing comes at the top of the list. Gullets are beautiful teakwood motor-sailing boats, designed and built-in Bodrum (ancient Halicarnassus, the home of the Mausoleum) since the 1960s. Their good looks and luxurious accommodations make them very popular for blue voyages. Most gullets have five to eight cabins and vary between 60 and 100 feet long. Each cabin comes equipped with a private toilet and shower, and 24-hour hot water. The rear deck of the yacht is used for serving meals; the front deck is good for sunning, naps, and even sleeping under the stars. There are enough mattresses on the deck so that those who wish to can stay outdoors for all twenty-four hours. The boat also comes equipped with simple water toys such as a windsurfer and kayak, so that guests can play during their free time.
Our guests use gulets as a floating hotel which takes us to the ancient trailheads, fishing villages, small and cozy towns, or quaint little coves to swim and spend the night.
Hiking in Turkey is an unforgettable experience. We know the most scenic trails, in out-of-the-way locations where we rarely encounter other groups. Our hikes combine unspoiled beauty and dramatic vistas with sites of exceptional historical and archaeological interest so that guests can exercise their minds, bodies, and senses all at once. While feasting on the brilliant colors and spectacular topography of the Turkish landscape, they will also be making contact with the richness of its past. Our walks take us through wind-chiseled canyons and wildflower displays; from secret blue lagoons to ruin-studded plateaus; along coastal bluffs and forested hillsides; through lush valleys and remote peninsulas. The scents–of flowers and foliage, ripening fruits and wild sage–are as memorable as the sights. We plan our hikes to take the best advantage of seasonal light and temperature, and often conclude with a photogenic site such as a hilltop fortress or island sanctuary, a place to contemplate the persistence of nature and the hand of time.
We understand that, for health-conscious travelers, meals must always be wholesome and nutritious. But it is equally important for guests to experience authentic cooking that represents the variety of Turkish ingredients and preparations. On our trips, we make sure that our clients enjoy a spectacular array of authentic Turkish cuisine, through a choice of exceptional restaurants as well as picnics and home-cooked meals. We create opportunities to visit local markets, to learn Turkish cooking from the locals or professionals.
Turks are known all over the world for their hospitality. On our trips, guests can meet and interact with these warm and gracious people–not just with other tourists. Guests have the opportunity to meet local people during hikes, homestays, and visits to village markets and craft workshops. Because our itineraries are flexible, we can always find time to chat or ask questions. Our friendly guides will be happy to translate.
Turkey has long been known as a crossroads of civilizations and cultures, the place where the continents meet. Some go so far as to call Turkey an “open-air museum.” Here we can retrace the history of civilization from its very beginnings. When, after two million years, the hunter and gatherer peoples tired of wandering, they settled in what is now Turkey. These, the first Neolithic people, cultivated the land, domesticated animals, and built towns to live in organized communities. They also created arts to express and enjoy their feelings, as well as idols to be worshipped and traded. They were followed by others who mined, initiated the use of writing, improved their technology, traded at greater distances, and built bigger cities. We call these the Hatti people, the Hittites, the Carians, Frigians, Armenians, Lydians, and Lycians, the Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, Selcuk Turks, Ottoman Turks, etc. They left us an extraordinarily rich and varied heritage of architecture, philosophy, religion, and artistic expression. We in Turkey are uniquely fortunate to have preserved each layer of this heritage, and all its many facets. Some of these great relics include the premier Catalhoyuk, known to have been a great urban settlement 9,000 years ago, with a population of 10,000; Troy of *The Iliad*; Priene and Miletos, known as the pioneers of the grid-plan Ionian cities; Pergamon where parchment was invented; Saint Paul’s seven churches; the rich mosaic collections of the Roman era; outstanding Ephesus, with its famous terrace houses; exotic Constantinople; as well as an uncountable number of settlements, temples, monumental mosques, churches, and more. On our trips, we visit representative examples of this rich collection, so that guests develop a sophisticated understanding of history while experiencing it as an adventure. As well as the major sites which should not be missed, we explore other treasures which, because they are “off the beaten track,” are rarely glimpsed by tourists. These sites, which often have superb locations and character, as well as great historical and archaeological value, are among our guests’ favorite stops.
We operate tours with cultural and environmental interests and very often use accommodations in or near areas where environmental restrictions apply. This is why, we are aware that we should pay maximum attention to keep our environmental impact low.
We prefer, encourage, and support sustainable properties. We no longer contract the accommodation facilities, is they are not eager to fulfill their requirements for sustainable tourism.
We choose accommodations where our clients feel specially treated. We emphasize small family-run guesthouses and “boutique” hotels with character and atmosphere. Many are housed in beautiful historic buildings. All are comfortable and convenient, and many boast especially striking locations. We also arrange accommodations with local families, for guests to experience the warmth and hospitality of Turkish home life.