The bustling port of Göcek. The untouched rural mountain villages above Göcek – with superb walking. The nature reserves, historic ruins and fabulous beaches of the Dalian Delta. All provide a taste of the uniqueness of Turkey.
The journey from Dalian airport to the Gulf of Göcek which takes 20 mins is one of which we will never tire. Coming through the tunnel the road climbs into the mountains before revealing the most breathtaking views. The forest-clad mountain range reaches as far as the eye can see, providing the dramatic backdrop to the plains, coastal towns, villages and beaches that are scattered throughout the region.
This region, since 1988 has been declared a special environmental protection area and as a result has become a third degree natural site. The old name of Göcek is Kalinche and in nearby coves, like in this one, many other old remains can be seen. These remains are a proof of these coves having been used in earlier times. This region is the heart of ancient Lycia and host to a number of historic sites amongst which Kadyanda, Kaunos, Tlos, Pinara, Letoon, Xanthos and Patara are particularly noteworthy. Wonderful experiences can be had by simply meandering along the myriad of mountain roads, heading nowhere in particular, just soaking in the astounding scenery and happening across villages where time appears to have stood still. Dramatic mountains, stunning beaches, cosmopolitan ports, rustic villages and the wonderful islands of the gulf all combine to provide a snapshot of the diversity that makes Turkey and in particular the Lycian Coast so special.
The many waterside restaurants, cafés and bars provide the perfect spot to relax and watch the theatre unfold before you. The ambience is relaxed and unspoilt without a hint of mass-market tourism, as Göcek has always catered for the independent visitor and, thankfully, its services are designed with a view to quality not quantity. Göcek’s guests come either from the yachts and boats in the harbour or the handful of boutique hotels and villas in the region. This makes for an eclectic mix of visitors of all nationalities. The streets behind the harbour hold a selection of shops selling all manner of produce. The water frontage and the marina are where the surprisingly wide choice of restaurants and menu types are to be found. A perfect spot to unwind from a busy day spent in exploration of the gulf! Like the famous poet Homer of Izmir says when the sun sends its golden rays behind the mountains and at the moment the color of the waters transform into the color of wine, colorful nights of Göcek start.
Göcek is the gateway to the wonderful unspoilt islands in the Gulf and these are where many of the region’s best beaches are to be found. The small selection of island beaches is accessible by water-taxi from the harbour or long lazy days may be spent exploring the gulf on an Island Cruise. .
Islands named “Yassıca Islands” don’t have individual names. They are so small that no one has named them. They are named as the Yassıca islands as a group. There are no establishments on the islands. The biggest one has a sandy beach and there is a small pool cape off the lagoon. It looks purpose built for children to play in. You can swim here without fear of danger from anything between the islands. The minimum distance is 12m between two islands. If you have half an hour you can swim to and from four islands. You can explore the islands by walking if you wish but don’t forget to take sturdy shoes or boots with you as the ground can be very stony. Despite their small size these islands have a good variety of different plants and foliage. Although the ruins seen on the island belong to a recent date, it is known that a habitation had existed at an earlier date too. The remains of quays and of submerged buildings found in the water west of the Island of Göcek indicate that people had lived here in the past. You must be very careful when you pass between the islands because there are the remains of ruins in the sea. There are the remains of a bridge in the narrowest part of the west side of the island named Seytan Ada; it served as a passage to the island of Haci Halil in the past.
Göcek Adası, Göceğin doğal bir liman olmasındaki en büyük etkendir. Göcek'in tam girişinde bulunduğu için Göcek'i Gün Doğusu, Keşişleme ve Kıble yönünden esen rüzgarlardan büyük bir oranda korur. Bu ada üzerinde irili ufaklı çok sayıda plaj vardır. Yatçılar tarafından en çok ziyaret edilenleri batı yönündeki batı koyu ve doğu yönündeki incirli koy'dur. Adada incirli koy dışında hiç bir ticari alan yoktur. İncirli koy'a yaz aylarında Göcek Belediye Marinasıdan her saat başı dolmuş tekneler çalışmaktadır. Aynı zamanda bu tekneler her saat başında koydan Göcek yönüne haraket etmektedir.
Yassıcaların güney ucunda. Adından da anlaşılacağı üzere ada zeytin ağaçlarıyla kaplı. Özel mülk olan tek ada. Adada Osmanlı dönemine ait bir zeytin sıkma atölyesi de var.
Domuz adasının güneyinde, girişi epeyce dar, çevresi çam ve zeytin ağaçlarıyla kaplı uzunca bir koydur. Koyun uç noktasında karaya çıkanlar, kaya mezarları ve antik kalıntılarla karşılaşacaklardır.
Club Marina'nın yanından geçerek devam edeceğiniz yol sola doğru keskin bir dönüş yapıp, deniz seviyesine indiğinde, çam ağaçlarının denizle iç içe olduğu şirin Ayten Koyu'na vardınız demektir. Bu koyda herhangi bir tesis bulunmamakta. Denizi hafif taşlık olmakla beraber her zaman sıcak ve sakindir.
Körfezdeki adaların en büyüğüdür. Mübadele sonrasında boşaltılmış eski Rum yerleşiminin kalıntıları yer alıyor adada. Adanın adını aldığı bir tersane ve gözetleme kulesinin kalıntısı karşınıza çıkacak ada gezisinde. Denizcilerin yaz ve kış koyları adını verdikleri iki koy, mavi yolculuk ve günübirlik gezi teknelerinin uğrak yeridir. Dar bir boğazdan girdikten sonra karşınıza çıkan kış koyu birçok yatçının aniden çıkan rüzgarlarda korunmak için sığındığı noktalardan bir tanesi.
Prens adası da deniyor. Bir zamanlar adada bol yaban domuzu bulunurmuş. Adanın rüzgara kapalı limanına tekneler rahatlıkla yanaşıyor ve demirliyor.
HAMAM KOYU (Cleopatra)
Mavi yolculuk ve günübirlik tekne turlarının uğramadan geçmediği koy. Mavi yolculuk tekneleri ve yatlar gecelemeyi çok seviyor. Günübirlik tekneler ise genellikle yemek molasını bu koyda veriyor. İskelenin hemen yanı başında, bir bölümü sular altında kalmış Bizans manastırı kalıntılarını göreceksiniz. Tekneden çıkıp kıyı boyunca ve orman içinde keyifli bir yürüyüş yapabilirsiniz. Kıyıda yatlara hizmet veren çardak lokantalar var.
Kendinize güveniyorsanız Kleopatra Hamam Koyu ya da Yavansu’dan tepeye doğru yaklaşık yarım saatlik bir yürüyüşle antik kent Lydae’ye çıkabilirsiniz.
Tersane Adasının kuzeybatısında yer alan Taşyaka koyu, ressam Bedri Rahmi Eyüboğlu ve arkadaşlarının 1970’li yıllarda ziyaret ederek hayran kaldığı ve bu seyahat esnasında bir kaya üzerine yaptığı balık resmi nedeniyle Bedri Rahmi Koyu diye anılıyor.
Koyda salaş lokantalar ve yatların yanaşması için ahşap iskeleler bulunuyor. Suyu güzel çeşme, zakkumlarla süslenmiş çakıllı bir plaj, Bedri Rahmi’nin kayaya yaptığı balık resmi, sanatçı Azra Erhat’ın çakıl taşlarından uçurtma mozaiği koya ilgiyi artırır. Kuzeyde çeşme tarafındaki kayalıklara oyulmuş kaya mezarları, teknelere hizmet veren restoranın bulunduğu düzlükte buz gibi su kaynağı dikkat çeker. Kaynak etrafı betonla çevrilmiş ve küçük bir havuz elde edilmiş. Sıcak günlerde havuz çekiyor insanı. Düzlükteki patikayı bulup yokuşu tırmananlar yarım saatlik yürüyüş sonunda üç beş haneli Kilisebelen Köyüne ulaşıyor. Dalaman ovasını, Havaalanını, Kocagöl ve Baba adayı içine alan manzara çok güzel.
Korunaklı yapısı ve doğal plajı ile hem denize girmek hemde teknede gecelemek için tercih edilen koylardandır. Uzun çakıllı plajı, arkada içlere doğru giren ağaçlıklı ovası, çam ağaçlarıyla kaplı dağlarla çevrelenmiş olması Sarsala’yı çekici kılar. Teknelerin en çok bağlandığı Küçük Sarsala koyunda bir restoran ve iskelesi bulunur. Bu koydan Taşyaka koyuna doğru yüründüğü taktirde Likya uygarlığından kalma kaya mezarları gezilebilir.
YAVANSU VE GÖBÜN KOYLARI
Tropikal coğrafyalarda rastlanabilen nefes kesen sualtı görüntülerine sahiptir. Her iki koyda bulunan ve tekne yolcularına hizmet veren restaurantlar size bu güzel atmosferde farklı anlar yaşama imkanı verir. Kapı ve Merdivenli koylarının sessiz ve sakin kimliği, yalnızlık arayan tekne yolcuları için yemyeşil çamların arasında kaybolmanızı sağlayacaktır. Kolaylıkla karaya çıkmanızı sağlayan sahil bandından kıyıya çıkıp, kısa yürüyüşlerle çevreye göz atıp tanıma imkanı bulabilirsiniz.
SIRALI BÜK LİMANI
Küçük ve büyük Hurmalı koylarını içerir. İsteyen yat ve tekneler bağlanabilir.
OSMAN AĞA KOYU (Çeşmesi)ZEYTİNLİ ISLAND (Olive Grove Island)
The island located south of Yassıca Island. As you will understand from the island name the island covered with olive trees. This is the only island that has a private owner. There is an olive oil workshop on the island remaining from Ottoman times.
Tersane Island is the biggest island in the gulf of Fethiye. The island was deserted after the population exchange took place, which left many ruins from the Greek occupation. You will notice a watch tower and shipyard as soon as you arrive from which the island was named. There are two bays on the island named by sailors as winter and summer harbors. Many blue voyage yachts or daily tripper boats anchor in these two bays during their voyage. After entering a narrow channel you will be in calm waters. Due to this feature many sailors use this bay as a shelter to escape from unexpected winds.
There are some Byzantine remains on the island of Tersane, formerly called Telandria, nice to visit and to swim between the ruins in the water. The Greek people, who lived here, left the island during the exchange of populations effected after World War 1.
DOMUZ ISLAND (Pork Island)
Some people name this island as Prince Island. Once upon a time there were a lot of wild pigs here; therefore the island was named Domuz (Pork) Island. Many yachts can be found anchoring in protected areas of the island.
This is the bay that no blue voyage yachts or daily tripper boats will pass without anchoring. The sailors like to spend their nights here. Daily tripper boats prefer to serve lunch to their customers in this bay. You will see a monastery next to the pontoon some of which is under water. You can walk in the pine forest along the shore. There are several restaurants with wooden pergolas on the shore serving the yachts.
If you feel up to it you can take a half an hour walk from Hamam Bay to the hill where you will see the ancient city of Lydae. You can also reach here from Yavansu Bay.
Taşyaka Bay located northwest of the Tersane Bay is known for the famous painter Bedri Rahmi Eyüboğlu and his friends who visited during the 1970's and felt such admiration for the beauty of the bay they also called it Bedri Rahmi Bay. There is a drawing on the rock at the entrance of the bay painted by Bedri Rahmi Eyüboğlu this is the reason that the bay called Bedri Rahmi Bay. There are some old restaurants in the bay and also a pontoon for yachts. Points of attraction around the bay are cold fresh water, a pebble beach decorated with oleanders, a fish drawing painted by Bedri Rahmi and a kite mosaic made by artist Azra Erhat. You will also notice rock cut tombs on the north side. There is also a fresh cold spring running into the bay, which is covered by a concrete like pool figure. The pool calls you in the hot days. The people who find the path to climb up the mountain will reach within half an hour the Kilisebelen village. There are several houses in this village and the magnificent views make the walk well worthwhile. You can see Dalaman plain, Dalaman airport, Kocagöl and Baba island.
The bay located south of the Domuz Bay. The entrance of the bay is very narrow but once inside you will find a long bay surrounded by olive and pine trees. At the far end of the bay you will find some rock cut tombs and ruins. The bay is visited by blue voyagers but not by the daily tripper boats. The coves of Large and Small Sarsala, Manastir, Çamli Koy, Merdivenli Koy and the last one in the gulf named Göbun Koyu are all located north. This beautiful gulf had been discovered by ancient people during the Antique Age and they had settled here before we did and enjoyed these beauties. The antique city of Lydae, above the harbor Aga Limanı in the south of the Peninsula of Kapidag, is one of these. You can reach there by walking from the coves of Aga or Manastir.
When you drive towards the Dalaman direction from the highway you will notice the club marina sign on the left. Once you have taken this turn keep going along the narrow twisty road and you will see the club marina on the left hand side. If you continue further along the road you will take a sharp left hand turn that will take you down to sea level and to the bay name Poruklu Bay. Poruklu bay is a lovely place with green pine forest. You will find a stony beach that has warm calm waters throughout the year.
Sarsala Bay is another preferred bay by sailors with a natural bay ideal for swimming or spending the night in. It is an attractive bay with a long stony beach, a wooded valley that runs inland, surrounded by pine Forestry Mountain. There is a restaurant and pontoon at the small Sarsala Bay where many yachts moor. You can explore Lycian ruins if you walk towards Taşyaka Bay.
These bays offer a magnificent underwater view where you can see a tropical underwater vista. There is a restaurant within each bay offering differing tastes and atmospheres. The quiet and calm nature of the bays makes them an ideal place for the sailors who are looking for a safe anchorage. You can relax and enjoy the beauty of these bays under the pine forest. Should you wish to go ashore, take a walk and explore the bay this can easily be done.
SIRALI BÜK HARBOUR
It includes small and big Hurmalı (date palm) bays. This is another sheltered area for the sailors.
OSMAN AĞA BAY
This is a bay that many local people prefer to visit at weekends to rest with their families and have a picnic. There is a spring in the bay, which is available all year round. Wild animals also visit this bay when it is quiet to drink water and also to eat the food that has been left from the picnics.
AT BÜKÜ BAY
There are a lot of reeds in the bay. One side of the bay is a bit muddy therefore after sunset the mosquitoes invade the bay. The calm water within the bay makes it a good choice for those families with children.
Günlüklü Bay has a lot of Günlük trees so naturally this is how the bay was named. This is another bay preferred by many local people who will visit during the weekend. This bay also has a spring, which can be reached by road from the Göcek and Dalaman direction. Inlets can be found around the bay for those who don't like crowded places and are looking for peace and quiet.
BOYNUZ BÜKÜ BAY
There is a wooden pontoon in the bay for yachts that wish to moor. This bay is also covered with Günlük trees and if you take a walk around to explore the area you will find many types of plants, birds and wildlife.
KİLLE BÜKÜ BAY
This is another bay with a lovely beach and pine forest where you could easily get lost if you don't take note of the direction you are walking. Also with the bay you will find church ruins and decorated stones.
South of the Lake Kargin, there is another antique city which was named Lissa, but there isn't much left of this city now. One of the ancient writers, Pliny, had written about this city where there is an acropolis with a wall made of regular stones in it and also an epitaph on the southern face of this wall. The Lycian rock tombs of the antique city of Crya above the of Bedri Rahmi bay, formerly called Taçyaka, can be seen in the cove. The Lycians who lived in a wide region extending from the river of Dalaman to Phaselis near Antalya, had carved in the rocks the models of their deceased people's houses, as a sign of respect to them. We see these tombs in Fethiye, Tlos, Pinara, Xanthos, Sura, Kekova, Myra, Kas, Limyra and other Lycian cities. We also come across a great number of sarcophagi, called the Lycian-type sarcophagi, in these cities and other Lycian cities. Some ruins remains are also seen on the islands and in the bays.