ANCHORING LOCATIONS IN FETHIYE
Fethiye has become a popular destination for both local and international tourists looking for sailing holidays in Turkey or breaks on land.
The ruins of a fortress built by the Knights of Rhodes can be seen on the hillside overlooking the town along with rock tombs from the Lycian period. One worth visiting is the tomb of Amyntas. In 1958 the town was destroyed by an earthquake sparing only the ancient remains. Fethiye was previously called Telmessos but the name of the town was changed in honour of Fethi Bey one of the first pilots of the Ottoman Air Force. Recently a new recreation area, Fehi Bay Park, has been built at the end of the promenade between Fethiye a Calis. The park is well worth a visit; there is something for everyone with children’s play areas, skateboard and bike ramps, reading areas, lake and plenty of seating areas all set in beautiful gardens.
Although there are no beaches in the centre of the town of Fethiye there are many popular hotels and it is a good base to explore further afield. Beach lovers can visit the nearby resorts of Oludeniz and Calis, the sea is warm enough to swim all year round. For history lovers, there are many historical sites such as Xanthos, Letoon, Pinara, Tlos and Cadianda not too far away.
Fethiye is an ideal starting point for sailing holidays in Turkey or daily boat trips around the 12 islands in the Gulf of Fethiye.
Oludeniz is one of the most photographed beaches in the world with its sheltered and protected lagoon beside a lush national park, a long spit of sandy beach and Baba Dağ mountain casting its shadow across the sea. It is also a popular tourist resort visited every year by many local and international travellers. Blue cruise sailing holidays in Turkey will make a stop here depending on the route chosen.
In the Oludeniz area, Karacaören Bay is one of the most secure places to anchor and a popular stop on the yacht charter in Turkey blue cruise routes. It is sheltered from the winds by an archipelago of reefs and rocky islets. There is a restaurant on the northern shore and if you use the restaurant’s moorings you are expected to eat in the restaurant and they will send a dingy to collect you from your boat.
Between Ince headland and the Dilek headland in its north is a recessed narrow cove, Boğazdağ Peninsula, it is covered with pine forest on the high slopes and an olive grove is on the opposite side. The bay narrows to the west, the depth decreases to 10 m, you can anchor here but a swell can be felt.
Gemiler Island was previously known as Aya Nikola and is also called Saint Nicholas Island. It is a small island, approx 1 km long and a few hundred metres wide giving you 360 degree views of stunning scenery.
Remains from the Byzantine era can be seen both on land and in the sea. Gemiler Island is thought to be the birthplace of Saint Nicholas (Father Christmas) or at least the place he and his followers used as a refuge to escape Roman persecution. The ruins you can now see, are a monastic retreat, several churches, other building and tunnels connecting the churches, were built by Saint Nicholas and his followers. The island is supposedly where Saint Nicholas was buried but his bones were removed and taken to Myra after the island was abandoned due to threats by the Arab fleet.
There is no fresh water on the island and it has to be transported there by boat. This may be why the traditional name for the island is Gemiler meaning Boat Island.
Gemiler Island is another popular stop on both the blue cruise yacht charter in Turkey and daily boat trips.
On the east side of Gemiler Island is a magnificent bay called Kalevezi Bay. On the west side is a popular anchor point called Cold Water Bay. While swimming in the bay you can feel the cold water spring as cold areas of the sea. This is another popular stop off on both the daily boat trips and sailing holidays in Turkey. This beautiful bay was once the port for Kayakoy village and a path goes from the bay and up the hill to the abandoned village. On the hill, you will see a tomb from the Lycian period.
Mersin Limani is surrounded by steep hills and pine trees. It is an isolated creek and is not accessible by land. The creek is smaller than Cold Water Bay but offers better shelter from the prevailing winds. Visit Mersin Limani while sailing in Turkey.