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Mediterranean Cruise - Turkey | 8 days

Our swim-cruising Turkish trip offers you an incredible open water swimming experience, sailing and exploring in some of the best parts of the warm Mediterranean sea. Southern Turkey is a great place to enjoy open water adventures surrounded by stunning scenery of the Taurus mountains, crystal turquoise water and interesting historical sites from Romans and Byzantines times. We follow the Lycian Way from the gulf town of Göcek to Kekova island (Ucagiz). On the way we visit historical towns such as Kaş, Aperlai, Simena, Greek island of Meis (Kastellorizo) and stop at many blue caves, lagoons and bays.

Overview

Duration: 8 Days (7 Nights, MON-MON), ALL INCLUSIVE
Tour Type: Island Hopping and Coastal Sea Swimming and Hiking
Average Daily Swim: 4-5 kms
Accommodation: Cabin based on 37m (120ft) Luxury Turkish Gulet
Escort: One gulet, Two Dinghies, Extra Kayaks available for NON SWIMMERS
Lead Guide: Borut Strel
Travelling by traditional gulet is the best way of experiencing such adventure and you will greatly enjoy living on the sea. Living aboard a gulet is a special experience not to be missed at least once in a life-time. We use a luxurious 37-meter long traditional Turkish gulet which is equipped with all the comforts of home and you are expected to do nothing but sit back, relax and enjoy. Our gulet offers 8 large guest cabins, each with an ensuite showers, air-con and other features, giving us plenty of room and privacy if needed. Internet is available on board as well. Traditional Turkish food is prepared by experienced local team. Every day we go off boat to explore the islands, interesting sights and visit towns along the way.
 
This tour is suitable for all levels of swimmer, with three separate escorts for the safety and enjoyment of all guests. It is expected that you can swim 2+ kms per each swim per our itinerary. The rrip is great for non-swimming partners as well, they can kayak along.
 
Tour Highlights:
- Swim in the Mediterranean turquoise warm sea 
- Swim over interesting sights, stunning secluded bays, old shipwrecks and old city walls
- Enjoy sailing, cruising and sun-tanning on a luxurious Turkish gulet, spend the night under the stars
- Enjoy Turkish freshly prepared organic meals on the deck 
- Visit historical towns of Kaş, Aperlai, Kalkan, Kekova and feel laid-back environment for the week
 
Included in the price
Fully guided tour with comprehensive safety escort (3 boats, 2 swimming guides, 1 local boat pilot), swim coaching, technique & stroke analysis, 7 nights on-board accommodation, all breakfasts, all lunches (except one in Greece), all dinners and water during meals.  Each guest receives a swim hat. Limited fins, rash vests and other swimming gear will be available on each tour. If you need a wetsuit, please bring it with you.
 
Additional costs
Travel to and from the start of the tour, travel visas, drinks on the boat (bar), gratuities, optional 25 EUR entry fee to Greek island of Meis (Kastellorizo). Single room supplement requested in advance: 200 EUR. If you are single and happy to share a room with another person, there is no extra charge. If we are unable to find another person of the same sex, you will be charged the supplement of 200 EUR and given your own cabin. 

Additional Information

Recent Photo Gallery from October 2015 Trip

Photo Slideshow of Gulet Boat

Photo Slideshow of Gulet Boat - 2

Travel Route Map

Read an interview about this trip

Trip Notes

PDF: Swim and Sail Holiday Trip Notes 
 
Video Trailor (for best quality, select HD quality and watch full screen)
 


Video Testimonials from Swim and Sail Trip



Video Guest Review of Swim and Sail Trip



See the Turquoise Water we Swim and Sail through


Swim and Sail Cruise Swimming

About Area

About Kaş, Turkey
Kaş (pronounced Kaash) and means ‘eyebrow’, is a small historical town on the very southern coast of Turkey. South mediterrean climate is hot most of the summer and peak season is considered from May-October. This colourful harbour town is framed by the dramatic Taurus mountains and is located halfway between Dalaman (180 km) and Antalya airports (200 km). The winding cobbled streets, colourful local shops, flowers and local market place all combine a real Turkish flavour.
Kaş is part of the Lycian Way, a 500 km long waymarked hiking trail in southwestern Turkey, connecting Fethiye in the west with southwest of Antalya in the east along the Lycian coast. A lot of international travellers come to this region to hike and walk this part of coast.
This area offers all kinds of adventures from diving (some of the best in the world), sea kayaking, swimming, paragliding, canyoning, trekking, mouintain biking, etc.
 
Greek island of Meis (Kastellorizo)
Part of our trip is also a day trip to Meis island.  Meis (Greek: Kastellorizo) is a small Greek island right in front of Kaş, Turkey. When you arrive it looks very colourful, quiet and full of bizarre and friendly locals. Kastellorizo in Greek means "biggest", but actually it is one of the smallest of all Greek islands. There is a small village on the island and only a few hundred locals live there. Daily ferry boats from Kaş take you 5km across to Meis to explore and relax at this colourful little paradise. You feel and see the difference in lifestyle and culture compared to Turkey across the water. Great things to do while at Meis: hike up to the top point and see 360 view, explore the side streets, most houses are different colours, eat (try fresh calamari from the harbour restaurant), drink, relax, visit the castle and get a magical view from the top, take a boat trip to Blue Cave and swim with the sea turtles in the bay.

Accommodation

 
Total guest cabins: 7. All cabins are large and very spacious with en-suite showers, air-con, electric plugs, etc.  5 large double bed cabins, 2 triple bed cabins including one double bed and one single bed. 

Double bedroom 

Double bedroom Swim and Sail Turkey
 
Triple bedroom (one double and one single bed) - it could be used as twin share for 2 individual guests

Triple bedroom Swim and Sail Turkey

Living aboard gulet is a special experience. We use luxurious 36,5-meter long traditional Turkish gulet which is equipped with all the comforts of home and you are expected to do nothing but sit back, relax and enjoy. Our gulet offers 8 large guest cabins and gives us plenty of room to all have privacy for ourselves when needed. The closeness of the group on board promotes an atmosphere of friendship and sharing, relations among guests and crew tend to be relaxed and casual. The emphasis of our trip is to show our guests the beautiful Turkish and Greek coast and islands where we can get in touch with the water, swim and explore. One of the best feature of being on such boat is flexibility that we can get in the water anywhere, anytime and this means we go for the best places at the best time. We can swim in the mornings, afternoons, evenings, sunsets, moonlights, etc. The rest of the time we enjoy sailing, san-tanning on the deck while Turkish team prepares great meals for us and hiking at the islands and local towns. We believe you will make life-time friends and experience an unforgettable adventure.
 
Technical details
Category: Luxurious Gulet
Gulet type: 2 masted handcrafted ketch 
Flag: Turkish
Lenght: 36,5 m (120 ft)
Beam: 8 m
Draft: 3.9m
Engine: 2 x 450 HP Iveco
Year Built: Fethiye boatyard, year 2006
Year Renovated : 2011
Wood: Mahogany with teak deck
Power: 24V/220V
Fuel Capacity: 6000 lt
Water Capacity: 15,000 lt
Air Conditioning: all rooms
International permits
2/3 sails  
Crew: 4-5 members
 
Facilities & Amenities
Bar, BBQ, Deck Shower, Dishwasher, DVD Player, Freezer, Fridge, Guest, Phone, Hammock, Ice Box, Ice Machine, Indoor Lounge, Internet, MP3 Player/IPOD Dock, Music System, Oven, Sea Ladder, Shade Tents, Stove, Sun Beds, TV or Plasma, Washing Machine
 
Leisure & Equipment
Board Games, Canoe/Kayak, Fishing Equipment, Snorkelling Equipment, Waterskis, Towable Tube (Ringo), Tender with 15hp outboard or speed boat with 50hp outboard

Gulet structure
Strel Swim and Sail Turkey
 

Food

We hire a Turkish boat and crew for this trip. Full board is included in our cruise and meals on board are exceptionally good, consisting of a variety of fresh salads, fruits, grilled meats, local fish and Turkish specialities. Vegetarians will like Turkish mix of vegetables and mezes. Meal times will depend upon cruising schedules and our swims.

Dinner on the deck is usually the highlight of the day; a long leisurely meal sitting under the stars listening to the water lapping at the hull of the gulet.  If you wish to go off gulet and have a dinner on land there will be several opportunities to do that. We will take you there by boat and come to pick you up.

Water on board is included during meals, but not alcohol drinks. You can buy additional drinks on-board for normal rates. Please see the beverage list and prices attached for your information.

Bar Prices
 

General Trip Info

Start Point: Göcek harbour / Belediye Marina
Start Time: 3.30pm on the 1st Day
Finish Point: Göcek harbour  / Belediye Marina
Finish Time: 10am on the 8th Day

Please note that a cruise trip requires a certain amount of flexibility and we reserve the right to start or finish the trip on a different location due to weather or other logistical changes. However, we will organise a ground transfer to the destination on the starting or finishing day.
 
Scheduled cruising distance and route by boat: around 200-250 kms from Göcek to Kas / Kekova and return
 
Passports and Visas
You require a full passport to enter Turkey. Effective from 1 January 2015, passports will have to be valid for at least 60 days beyond the permitted stay. Please check whether you require a visa. Some EU nationalities do not require a Visa, while most others do, so please check with your local authorities if you need one. British, Australian, Canadian, Irish, USA nationals need a visa. Regulations do change, so please check before you travel. To visit Greek island of Meis, you need a Schengen visa. If you are coming from outside of EU, please check your requirements for Schengen - EU visa.
 
Vaccinations
There are no specific vaccinations required for Turkey, but you should ensure that your tetanus and polio vaccinations are up to date. You may also obtain vaccinations against hepatitis A and typhoid.
 
Extra Expenses
Travel to and from the start of the tour, travel visas, drinks on the boat (bar), gratuities, optional 25 EUR entry fee to Greek island of Meis (Kastellorizo). Single room supplement requested in advance: 300 EUR. If you are single and happy to share a room with another person, there is no extra charge. If we are unable to find another person of the same sex, you will be charged the supplement of 300 EUR and given your own cabin. 
 
Currency
The local currency is Turkish Lira (TL) in Turkey and Euro in Greece. 
 
Group Size
Up to a maximum of 12 guests, with 2 swimming guides, local boat captain, 2 assistants, chef and 2 dinghy escorts.

Itinerary

Day 1 - Monday
We meet at 5.00pm in Göcek harbour (meeting point of Aegean and Mediterranean Sea), a small town 20 min drive from the Dalaman airport. We board our traditional Turkish gulet and meet everyone. After initial introduction of your new home for the week and making yourself comfortable in your rooms, we do a trip briefing followed by our first group dinner on-board. Sail off into Tersane Bay for overnight.

Day 2
Before breakfast we jump into the water straight off our gulet and do our first short acclimatisation swim. Our Turkish cook prepares a great breakfast while we swim around. Breakfast on-board and then sailing off to Ölüdeniz bay near St. Nicholas Island where we do our first 2km coastal bay swim. Ölüdeniz  (Blue Lagoon) is one of the most photographed beaches in the Mediterranean. After a great swim in the blue clear water and our first video stroke filming, lunch is waiting on-board. After a little break we go off gulet to explore the historical ruins of a Byzantine settlement. Afternoon sail to Gerenlik Bay near Kalkan town where we swim between two uninhabited islands of Sican and Yual. Dinner on board followed by first video analysis session. Overnight in Kalkan bay.
 
Day 3
After breakfast we sail off to Kaputas beach and start our first swim there. We follow the stretch of Saribelen island towards the Blue (Mavi) cave. Swimming in the cave is a spectacular experience not to be missed. We can stay  there a bit longer if you want to do any diving with fins or snorkeling, taking photos, videos, etc. Shining colour of water and light coming through is amazing. Lunch on-board. From there we sail towards Kaş peninsula for the second swim. We swim along the peninsula for about 2 km passing Güvercin Island (Pigeon Island, named for its notable bird population). You will swim over a special spot of stone sculpture of an interesting ocean animal. Water clarity is unbelievable and this is one of the main diving spots in the Kaş area. Dinner on-board. Tonight is a chance we go off gulet and walk around Kaş town. Overnight in Kaş.
 
Day 4
We set off towards the 12 Islands situated across the channel from and facing the Greek island of Meis (Kastellorizo, or Megisti in Greek). We hop from island to island and explore unique underwater landscapes such as a shipwreck and underwater canyon. While you enjoy swimming, our local cook on-board our gulet prepares lunch of tasty Turkish mezes and grilled kebabs using organic and local ingredients. Sail off to Aperlai, a historical Lycian city which has been identified as an ancient town by some fifth century BC coins. It is located on Sicak peninsula with many interesting sights to see. We make our way exploring by foot through a narrow strip connecting to the other side of peninsula facing Üçağız village. We pass by several chapels, polygonal constructions from Roman times, tombs and sarcophagi. On the way back to our boat, you can swim over this ancient area passing the remains of the city walls underwater. For the afternoon we swim out of Aparlai Bay to Körmen Island. Overnight in Aparlai bay.
 
Day 5
Today is our "Kekova day trip" as locals call it. We enjoy our gulet ride and morning sunshine along the Turkish southern coast towards Kekova island and old Simena city. A fantastic blend of nature and history is the key ingredient of this unique day tour. After a good hour of cruising we reach our first swimming spot in a beautiful and calm Tersane Bay. Our lunch spot is along the Kekova Island in front of Üçağız village. Near there we see an ancient Roman dockyard and remains of a Byzantine church on the beach. After a hearty lunch of Turkish mezes and tasty vegetables, we head across to the picturesque Sunken city of Simena, which is ancient ruins and a World Heritage site. We go off the gulet to walk up 30min to Simena Castle and enjoy the magical view over the Kekova gulf. Our second swim is coastal along the Gokkaya bay, crystal clear hidden corner behind the Kekova island. Overnight in Gokkaya bay.
 
Day 6
Today is our Greek day and different to all others before. After a morning breakfast on the gulet deck we take the 10am ferry boat from Kaş harbour to the island of Meis (in Greek Kastelorizo). Drive takes only 25-30 min. Upon our arrival we walk up to the top of the island for about one hour, where you can see an amazing view to Kaş and other islands where you have swam and cruised in the past days. After a hike we eat in a local Greek restaurant and really feel you are in a different country. You then have a free afternoon until 4pm boat departure and you can spend time going swimming in the bay, sun-tanning, visiting the blue cave or just strolling around. Big sea turtles are very common in this area and they are easy to swim with! In the village you can see classic Greek (colourful house) architecture, fortress, castle, church, mosque and much more...Back to our gulet and sail off to Big Pebble beach for dinner and overnight. An alternative option to this day is that you stay on our gulet boat and spend the day on/around the gulet, do kayaking, snorkeling or going into Kaş town, explore the town or do one of the activities there.
 
Day 7 
After hearty breakfast on our gulet we sail back to Fethiye bay (Göcek area) for about 2 hours. We make our first swim along the beautiful sandy Patara beach. Lunch on-board. Afternoon is dedicated for second video filming and later analysis of your stroke to see how you have improved during the week. Dinner on-board and overnight near Kabak bay.
 
Day 8 - Monday
Morning swim and breakfast on-board in Kabak bay and drive back to Göcek harbour. Trip finishes at 10am.

Swimming Info

Swimming distances

SwimDistance
Around St.Nicholas Island2 km
Sican - Yual islands2 km
Kaputas beach - Blue (Mavi) cave2.5 km
Kas peninsula - Güvercin Island2 km
Greek island Meis - Heybeli island3 km
Aperlai bay - Körmen Island2.5 km
Tersane Bay coastal2 km
Kisneli island - Gokkaya2 km
Optional Blue cave swim (Greece island Meis)1-2 km
Patara beach coastal3 km
Kabak bay coastal2 km

Temperatures:

MonthWater Temp. (°C)Air Temp. (°C)
May22-2327
June23-2430
July2532
August26-2735
September2530
October2428

Keep in mind that you can skip any of the swims you want and relax on our escort boat(s). Temperatures are indicative and can slightly change from year to year.

Wetsuit, fins, rash vests, pull buoys Availability

We have limited swimming gear available on each trip, so please bring your own if you require one for yourself.
 
Walking
The walking on the trip is easy and it is on a recognished paths. In order to enjoy your walks in Kas, Aperlai, Simena castle and on the Greek island of Meis, please bring comfortable light walking shoes and suitable clothes for summer temperatures. 
NOTE! You do not need any shoes while on gulet boat.

Walking distances
St.Nicholas Island 1.5km
Aperlai: 2km
Simena castle: 2km
Meis island (Greece): 4km
 
Essential Equipment
In addition to normal items, we recommend bringing the following:
2 swimming costumes, 2 pairs of swimming goggles (one clear and one tinted for different light conditions), sweater/fleece, towel, sun hat, small daypack, waterproof sun cream and jacket, walking shoes and sandals or aqua shoes. We also provide drinking bottles while you swim and swim hats.

Swimming awareness
Your safety is of utmost importance to us. In the event of adverse weather conditions at any of our swimming locations, we may need to adapt our itinerary. Our team always includes local guides who know great places to swim, so rest assured you won’t be missing out! Swimming in the open sea amongst natural wildlife is a unique experience, but you may come across certain marine life such as jellyfish, sea turtles, coral and sea urchins from time to time. There are very few jellyfish along the Turkish southern coast and so the risk of any unfortunate encounters with them is low, and we will always show you the safest areas to swim. If you are stung by a jellyfish and are unable to carry on swimming, you will never be far from an escort boat where one of the guiding team will be able to treat the affected area. If you suffer from Anaphylaxis or any other allergic reactions it is important to inform us at the time of booking.
 

Travel

To get to Göcek you need to make your way down to Southern Turkey. There are numerous flights from all over Europe to two major airport cities of Dalaman and Antalya. Dalaman is the closest to Göcek and it is best  to fly there if you can. Overseas flights often connect you via Istanbul. Transfer by car/van from Dalaman airport takes about 20 min and from Antalya about 2.5 hours. You can contact us and we will help you arrange transfer to wait for you at the airport.
 
Flights to Dalaman from UK and other EU countries
Thomas Cook www.thomascook.com
British Airways www.ba.com
Turkish Airlines www.turkishairlines.com
 
Flights to Antalya from UK and other EU countries
Easyjet www.easyjet.com
Monarch www.monarch.com
Thomas Cook www.thomascook.com
Pegasus www.flypgs.com 
British Airways www.ba.com
Thomson www.thomson.co.uk
Turkish Airlines www.turkishairlines.com
Sun Express www.sunexpress.com 
 
A good way to search and compare flight prices and times is at:
http://www.skyscanner.net/

We work in Turkey with a local agent to organise our ground transfers. To book a transfer, please contact: Bougainville Travel at:
info@bougainville-turkey.com, +90 242 836 3737, www.bougainville-turkey.com
Trip availability
FromToPrice/from 
27-May-20173-Jun-2017
1400.00 EUR

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Trip not available
 
9-Oct-201716-Oct-2017
1400.00 EUR

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Trip full
 
16-Oct-201723-Oct-2017
1400.00 EUR

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