Blue Cruise or Blue Voyage
Blue Cruise ("Mavi Yolculuk" in Turkish) is a term used for
recreational boating tours along Turkey's spectacular southwestern
coasts, with connotations in tourism and literature.
The term was first introduced into the Turkish literature by a
handful of Turkish writers of fame. These writers were Cevat Sakir
Kabaagacli -alias The Fisherman of Halicarnassus, Bedri Rahmi and
Sabahattin Eyuboglu as well as his large and prominent circle of
family and friends, especially artists, Azra Erhat, the translator
into Turkish of Homer's Iliad and Odyssey, and others united
around the literary revue "Yeni Ufuklar" (New Horizons) in the
1950s and especially as of the 1960s.
"Blue Cruise" became a byword within Turkey's tourism industry and
the tours defined within the term are among the most popular
leisure and tourism concepts in Turkey. The term itself is derived
from the title of a celebrated 1957 book (re-edited after further
tours, for the first time in 1962 and then in 1979) by Azra Erhat.
A full Blue Cruise is generally admitted to start in Dydima, or
even Kusadasi, although the tours are often launched with
departure from Bodrum, and they usually come to an end with
Antalya as the final port of destination. In general parlance, the
term may also be used to refer to shorter tours as well, as long
as they take place along southwestern Turkey's shores.
The Blue Voyage offers the best possible escape on the water: a
means of forgetting the rigors of everyday life for a while and
just letting go of time. On a week or two week cruise, travelers
sail along the Southwest Turkish coast, through crystal clear
waters frequented by schools of dolphins and into quiet bays, the
harbors of small, picturesque villages and many a historic port.
Wherever you may come from, and however old you may be, after a
week or two afloat in this scenic wonderland, you will become of
one heart with the beauty and serenity of nature. Both body and
mind will revel in this healthy, happy environment.
What alternatives exist in
blue cruising ?
For the type of Blue Voyage we offer, you dont have to hold a
skippers license, nor do you need to be an avid sailor. For
private charters we provide you with a traditional wooden
yacht with crew. If you cannot get a group together so as to take
your own yacht, you still have the opportunity to join one of our
weekly cabin charter cruises. You might even like to go for
something racier, like a standard-sized bareboat with an
Most of our yachts are of the traditional wooden variety, built
either in Bodrum, Marmaris, Fethiye or the western Black Sea
Which season is best?
Between the end of July and the beginning of September, Turkey is
extra busy with the height of summer bringing thousands to the
coastal regions. July and August days are long and hot and the
nights are warm. June, the beginning of July and all of September
offer a better combination, with warm days and cool evenings. The
water in September can be especially warm in places. The months of
May and October offer excellent sailing conditions and the
opportunity to go trekking or fishing.
How do we spend the time?
During the day, we cruise for a few hours and sail if the wind
allows. Closer to lunch or dinner, we approach the land and drop
anchor in a solitary bay, alongside a small village or off an
island. At every stop, and there will be at least two per day,
there is the opportunity to swim, fish, snorkel, windsurf,
sunbathe, take a trip ashore or just read under the shade of the
sun awning. The accent is on relaxation and recreation.
Your friendly, attentive crew will consist of a captain, a cook
and either one or two seamen. Their job is to ensure that you are
comfortable, well fed and entertained.
What about Scuba diving?
We offer diving tours for people who wish to explore the depths
off the coast in the company of an experienced dive master. Bring
your friends and make a group or join an organized tour.
What shall we bring?
Our guests are advised that they will be spending most of their
time in a bathing suit so it is a good idea to bring at least two!
For land trips, a pair of long, light trousers and a shirt are
advisable. Evenings may be cool, certainly during the earlier and
later months of the year, so you are best to bring a pullover and
We also suggest you pack your beach towel, plenty of suncream,
snorkels/flippers/goggles if you plan on doing lots of snorkeling
and a sleeping bag if you are planning to sleep on deck.
Bed linen and towels for use in the cabins are provided by us and
you should expect a set of sheets during the hot summer months and
a bottom sheet and a pique (thick cotton sheet) during the spring
and autumn months.
Your Turkish crew may not have a thorough knowledge of English, so
you might be advised to take a small travellers dictionary along
with you for the cruise. Besides being understood more easily, it
is also a great way of picking up a few words of Turkish.
We suggest you bring your belongings in a collapsible bag, rather
than a suitcase, as bags are much easier to stow away, and also
serve to limit how much you pack! You may like to bring a light
day pack for excursions ashore.
One final word of advice: normal street shoes are definitely not
acceptable on board a yacht... we suggest you to bring soft-soled
shoes for getting around on deck.
During the Blue Voyage, the places you visit are the wealth of
civilizations. Any cruising ground that you choose is rich with
historic sites, ancient cities and unique rock tombs. Only Blue
Voyage will give you the chance to discover countless hidden
coves, undiscovered bays, sun drenched sandy beaches and isolated
villages, the private beach of Cleopatra, Oludeniz, the rock tombs
of Kaunos, the eternal fires of mount Olympos, Myria rock tombs,
the archeological remains of ancient civilizations, that had also
remained under sea. The experience of seeing breathtaking
panoramic views of a sea which flows into shades of green and blue
or the sun slipping down towering mountains and slowly
disappearing into a golden hazed sea can only be described as
priceless. During Blue Voyage you can go beyond the ordinary. Most
of us live in large cities where the city lights dull the
brightness of the stars. On the Blue Voyage you can see the stars
very clearly. If your Blue Voyage coincides with the full moon, it
is exceptionally beautiful in these parts.
When there is no moon, you are in for another treat, Phosphor
scene. It is the phenomenon created by tiny creatures invisible to
human eye. In the pitch dark when moving in the water, it glitters
when, for example you are rowing. At the point where the oar
touches the surface of the water, there will be circles of light.
The drops of water splashing from the oars will drop on the
surface of the sea like a shower of stars.
Swimming on a pitch dark night is an incredible experience, like a
narcissistic pleasure. Now imagine you will be lying on the deck
and alone with stars while the sea is quite choppy with in the
gulf or imagine visiting fishermen's villages isolated by the bay
during the day.
Click here for the map of the blue cruise
destinations in southwestern Turkey.
The gulet is the boat of the celebrated
Blue Cruise along Turkey's spectacular Turkish Riviera. With its
roomy deck at the stern this traditional boat is perfect for
passengers to savour the delights of cruising the inlets and
coves. The word derives from the Italian 'giulietta'.
The early history of this sailing boat remains largely unknown,
apart from the fact that building these boats in Turkey is a
tradition unique to Bodrum, although the gulet itself is suitable
for sailing in all seas. It is claimed to be unsinkable by the
half-dozen recognized master craftsmen who build gulets in Bodrum
and Gulluk since decades. The combined
launch of these local boatyards reach 15-20 boats per year. A
perfect gulet will have the bottom of the hull in the form of a
reversed S and the cross-timbers should be laid on the slant.
Making a gulet takes about one and a half years, including the
cabin, and the price starts at about 133,000 dollars without the
engine. Counting that a good engine could cost another 10 - 15,000
dollars the total outlay for a gulet ready to sail is around
150,000 dollars. The type of wood used can be pine, mulberry or
mahogany, preferably cut during the summer, and surprisingly, at
full moon (reputed to resist best to worms).
The procedure of building boats today has changed very little over
the centuries. The changes to the basic plank-on-frame method are
superficial. Electrical tools now allow craftsman to sand and
shape wood faster and with more precision than they used to be
able to by hand, and laminated epoxy allows for increased design
options. Inside the boat, design has changed over the years have
increasingly opted for larger dining and lounging facilities.