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Swim Sail Cruise – Lycian Way

Our all-inclusive swim cruise holiday in Turkey 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 Roman and Byzantine times. We follow the Lycian Way from the gulf town of Fethiye to Kaş. On the way we visit historical towns such as Ölüdeniz, Aperlai and Kalkan and stop at many blue caves, lagoons and bays.
Trip details:
  • Duration: 8 Days (7 Nights)
  • 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, Dinghies, Kayak
  • Extra: Kayak available for Non Swimmers or Partners
  • Package: All inclusive except alcohol drinks
Overview

Travelling by traditional gulet is the best way to experience such an adventure and you will greatly enjoy living on the sea. Living aboard a gulet is a special experience not to be missed. We use a luxurious 37-metre 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 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 the experienced local team. Every day we go off the 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 trip is also great for non-swimming partners or friends as they can kayak and / or stand up paddle (SUP) 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 meals on the deck
– Visit historical towns of Kaş, Aperlai and Kalkan and enjoy the 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, 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 visa, bar drinks on the boat, gratuity. 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.

PDF Trip Notes: Swim-Sail Cruise Turkey

Read two recent articles written by our guests on the trip:
Rachel, UK from May 2018 cruise
Dorothy, USA from October 2017 cruise

Video clips:

Accommodation

Living aboard the gulet is a special experience. We use a luxurious 37-metre 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 7 large guest cabins (double, twin) 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 coast and islands where we can get in touch with the water, swim and explore.

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One of the best features of being on the boat is flexibility that we can get in the water anywhere, anytime and this means we go to 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 and san-tanning on the deck while the 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 boat details
Category: Luxurious Gulet
Gulet type: 2 masted handcrafted ketch
Flag: Turkish with International permit
Length: 36,5 m (120 ft)
Beam: 8 m
Draft: 3.9m
Engine: 2 x 450 HP Iveco
Year Built: Fethiye, Turkey, 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: 5 members, plus 2 swimming guides

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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

Leisure & Equipment
Board Games, Canoe/Kayak, Fishing Equipment, Snorkelling Equipment, Tender with 15hp outboard or speed boat with 50hp outboard

Food – Meals

We hire a gulet and crew for this trip. We have our own chef who cooks for us the entire week. The 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 enjoy the 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 have a dinner on land there will be a few opportunities to do that as well.

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

PDF – Bar prices.

Cabins (double and twin)

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Boat Layout

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Itinerary

PDF Map of the Turkey swim cruise route

Day 1
We meet at 5.00pm in Fethiye harbour (meeting point of Aegean and the Mediterranean Sea), a small town 40 min drive from the Dalaman airport. We board our traditional Turkish gulet and meet everyone. After the 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.

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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 swim is around St. Nicholas Island. Dinner followed by video analysis session.We usually sleep overnight here.

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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.Dinner on board.

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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.

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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
We swim in the morning near to Kas in Limonagze bay, where we often see turtles. We relax and enjoy lunch then sail to Gerenlik Bay near Kalkan town where we swim between two uninhabited islands of Sican and Yual. Dinner on board. Overnight in Kalkan bay.

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Day 7
After a hearty breakfast on our gulet we sail back to Fethiye bay for about 2 hours. We make our first swim along the beautiful sandy Patara beach. Lunch on-board. Afternoon swim is  Dinner on-board and overnight near/in Fethiye harbour.

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Day 8
Breakfast on-board. Trip finishes at 9am.

Swimming info
Swim Distance
Around St.Nicholas Island 2 km
Sican – Yual islands 2 km
Kaputas beach – Blue (Mavi) cave 2.5 km
Kas peninsula – Güvercin Island 2 km
Kas 5 islands 3 km
Aperlai bay – Körmen Island 2.5 km
Tersane Bay coastal 2 km
Kisneli island – Gokkaya 2 km
Mavi Magara Blue cave swim 2.5 km
Patara beach coastal 3 km
Kabak bay coastal 2 km

 

Temperatures:

Month Water Temp. (°C/F) Air Temp. (°C/F)
May 23 / 73 27 / 80
June 24 / 75 30 / 86
July 25 / 77 32 / 90
August 26/ 78 35 / 95
September 25 / 77 32 / 90
October 24 / 75 29 / 84

 

Keep in mind that you can skip any of the swims you want and relax on the boat.

Essential Equipment
In addition to normal items, we recommend the following:
at least 2 swimming costumes, at least 2 pairs of swimming goggles (one clear and one tinted recommended), sweater/fleece, towel, sun hat, small daypack, waterproof sun cream and jacket, walking shoes and sandals or aqua shoes. We provide swim hats for all guests.

Equipment Availability
We have a range of swimming equipment including wetsuits, fins and rash vests available on each location. We cannot guarantee all sizes, so please bear this in mind and bring your own item if your swimming depends on this.

Walking Conditions
The walking on the trip is easy. In order to enjoy the walks please bring comfortable walking shoes and suitable clothes, for summer temperatures.

NOTE! You do not need any shoes while on gulet boat. We walk barefoot on the wood.

Swimming awareness
Your safety is of the 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 the safest and most picturesque 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, coral and sea urchins from time to time. There are very few jellyfish along the 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 immediately. If you suffer from anaphylaxis or any other allergic reactions it is important to inform us at the time of booking.

Travel info

Start Point: Fethiye, Turkey. Iskele Restaurant in Fethiye harbour. The local name for a meeting point: Fethiye Belediye Iskele (İskele Ocakbaşı Restoran).
Start Time: 5pm on the 1st Day
Finish Point: Fethiye Belediye Iskele (İskele Ocakbaşı Restoran)
Finish Time: Fethiye, Turkey. 9am on the 8th Day
Google Map Location (İskele Ocakbaşı Restoran)

To get to Fethiye 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 Fethiye and it is best to fly there if you can. Overseas flights often connect you via Istanbul.

Search for flights online: www.skyscanner.net

Ground transfer by car/van from Dalaman airport takes about 50 min and from Antalya about 2.5 hours. The taxi cost from Dalaman airport to Fethiye harbour is about 150 Turkish lira or 30-35 Eur/drive.  You can either take a yellow taxi at the airport or book it in advance online at: https://www.suntransfers.com.

Local destination name for the driver: Fethiye Belediye Iskele (İskele Ocakbaşı Restoran).

Bus option:
From Dalaman airport to Fethiye town you can use a local Havas bus to Fethiye. It costs 15 Turkish Lira/person and it takes about 1 hour. Please be aware that bus will drop you off on the main bus station in town (OTOGAR) and you need to make your way to the Fethiye Harbour. Best to take a local taxi for cca 25-30 Turkish Lira.

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. Please visit the site: http://www.mfa.gov.tr/visa-information-for-foreigners.en.mfa and check if you require a visa before the trip: http://www.evisa.gov.tr/en/. To visit Greek island of Meis, you need a Schengen (EU) 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.

Currency
The local currency is Turkish Lira (TL) in Turkey. Feel free to bring any other currency USD, GBP, EUR, AUD on the boat to pay for your drinks and for gratuity at the end.

Group Size
Up to a maximum of 12 guests, with 2 swimming guides, local boat captain, 2 assistants, chef and 2 dinghy escorts.

Trip Changes
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 the route by boat: around 200-250 kms.

Reviews

Read two recent articles written by our guests on the trip:
Rachel, UK from May 2018 cruise
Dorothy, USA from October 2017 cruise

2017 Guest’s reviews:

Last week was magical thanks to all of you!
~Amanda, Barbados

Thank you all for making this adventure such an amazing, special one. It was a true joy to meet all of you!
~Rowena, USA

Guests’ video testimonials – Swim and Sail Cruise – Turkey

Susan Goldsworthy (ex Olympian swimmer) talks about our Swim and Sail Cruise – Turkey:

Videos
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19 May - 26 May, 2018
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18 May - 25 May, 2019
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