Near one of Gökova’s quite coves called the English Harbor stands a mermaid statue, which the sailor Sadun Boro presented to the cove. The following words are written on it: ‘This mermaid has crossed over countless seas, and horizons only to search for the heaven that was embellishing her dreams. She has wandered continents, islands, and coves… Until she had reached to Gökova…’
The blue heavens are slowly vanishing. One must go through big tests, travel across the mountains and seas to discover untouched shores. Let’s explore some of the most beautiful coves and beaches in Turkey! Who knows, maybe one of them could be your heaven…
AN EXOTIC ‘RESORT ISLAND’
Kalem Island that is located in the Bademli Cove of Dikili dominates both shores of the Bademli Village in İzmir and Lesbos Island. The resort island, which is in an exotic mood, offers a view that cannot be seen around the Aegean or Mediterranean shores. Kalem Island lies in the middle of the sea between the shores of Garip Island and the Bademli Village and off the coasts of Bademli Cove, which provides shelter for sailors. It has an area of 480 thousand square meters and 400 meters from the mainland. The island is 13 miles from Lesbos Island, which is a Greek island about 45 minutes away from Kalem Island and can be reached by boats departing from Ayvalık and Dikili. The Oliviera Resort Hotel is the only accommodation on Kalem Island. Their use of greenery, wood and stone is appropriate. Some of the features of the hotel such as the beach, platforms, garden hammocks, the beach club that hides among the natural rocks, a lounge with a sea view, a blue flag marina that serves to boats, diving courses, beach fires at night, and so forth are the indicators that the place is well equipped as an island resort.
DO NOT MISS
Watch the sunset from the Oliviera Resort while facing Lesbos.
FROM DESERT YELLOW TO DEEP BLUE
The Lycians assigned Patara as their main port. The civilization, well known with their magnificent tombstones, established settlements on the steep cliffs of the fertile grounds of Xanthos Valley. Today’s Patara has one of the most famous beaches of Turkey. The longest beach of the Mediterranean with 18 km of coastline is also the breeding site of caretta caretta turtles. If a section of the beach experiences an influx of tourists, the beach allows you to leave with ease thanks to its lengthy geography. At such times, try the Özlen vicinity, which is located 18 km to the west of the entrance of the Patara Beach. The Özlen vicinity is where the Eşen Creek meets the sea. The vicinity sometimes serves as a place to cool off for the people living in the surrounding villages. Sometimes you might come across people fishing. You can wade or swim through the water to go from the Özlen vicinity to Güvercin Island; the water can reach only 1-2 m in depth from place to place. Enjoy the deep blue waters of the southern part of Güvercin Island! Patara has sparkling, deep blue waters full of grey mullets and white groupers.
If you are planning to swim at Özlen, bring your drinking water and picnic supplies because the closest resting facility is 4 km away in Kumluova.
You can participate to canoe tours on the course of 12 km long Eşen Creek from the Patara View Hotel in Gelemiş.
AN EXTRAORDINARY BEACH AT THE BLACKSEA
Güzelcehisar is one of the most magical coves of the Blacksea. It resembles the fjords of Norway. The cove is 17 km to the northwest of Bartın. Despite the fact that Güzelcehisar is 5 km away from İnkumu, its nature is still untouched because there is no settlement in the region. Its special geography originates from the 80 million year old volcanic rocks that start from the west end of the beach rising like a giant wall over the sea and covering the whole shore until the Mugada Cove. The volcanic lava rocks reach from the land to the sea and ends where they meet the sea. There are no lounge chairs or umbrellas at the beach. The beach is suitable for trekking, and for fishing from September to October. Go trekking from the Güzelcehisar Cove to the İnkumu and Mugada Coves on one of the forest courses, that way you can watch the sea while walking.
Try the fish salad at Hoca’nın Yeri in the Güzelcehisar Village and taste the chicken at the İnkumu-Güzelcehisar junction.
THE BLUE FLAG COVE OF THE NORTH AEGEAN
The blue flag cove of Ortunç, which is located on the west of Cunda Island, is one of the most special coves of this region because of its nature and calm. According to tests done biweekly by the Environment Foundation of Turkey, the cove has the cleanest seawater of Balikesir. The first blue flag cove of the North Aegean takes its name after the Club Ortunç, which dominates the entire cove. The beach of the facility is hidden among the pine forests of the Natural Park of the Ayvalık Islands, which includes the entire untouched section of Cunda Island. The beach is open to the club guests as well as daily visitors for a fee. For those who enjoy water sports, canoe and pedalo renting facilities are available. There is also diving school for diving enthusiasts. Ayvalık has twenty-two islets in total. It is a region waiting to be discovered by the divers. Coral formations and amphorae, which are located around the thirty-five diving points surrounding the Ortunç Cove, create quite a sight. The facility has a sense of environmental awareness. The club has a rich landscape with forty-five different species of plants and trees from figs to plane trees and from bougainvilleas to silverberries that spread over an area of 4 thousand square meters.
Climb through the paths of the Natural Park of Ayvalık Islands to reach the top of the island and watch the landscape of Cunda from there.
BIRDS’ BELOVED DESERTED ISLAND
The sea channels into the pine forests, reaches out towards the deep, and the forest gradually turns into a jungle… Bördübet, located on the part of the Datça Peninsula that faces the Gulf of Gökova, is a desolate cove secluded from the civilization. According to local residents, the English soldiers who hid in this cove were amazed by the variety of the bird species inhabited the place and they named the cove ‘bird the bed’. Pine trees surround the cove, therefore making it shady and cool even in summer. You can hear the true nature in here. Housing is at the minimum level in Bördübet because it is included in the Special Environmental Protection Area. The only option for accommodation until the 4 km away Amazon Club is the Golden Key Bördübet, which rests among the pine trees, exuberant vegetation and vibrant flowers where the stream reaches the sea.
If you have a trusted vehicle, travel through Gökova by following the course of Amazon Cove-Yedi Islands-Martı Cove-Löngöz-Karacasöğüt-English Harbor.
EGG IN HEN HOUSE, FISH IN THE SEA
It is not easy to come across such a place that hosts this many natural beauties as the Karaot Beach does along the coastal strip of the Aegean-Mediterranean. The rest of the beach is preserved widely from the housing. The beach is also the protected breeding site for caretta turtles. Many creatures and endemic plants inhabit the Akgöl freshwater lake, which is on the west side of the beach, and the surrounding reed field. While the citrus orchards are located on the west of the beach, the endemic sweet gum forests, which stretch down to the sea, inhabit the eastern side of the beach. The area is under natural protection. It is possible to see the traces of the preserved traditional rural life of the Mediterranean inside the village. A large part of the beach doesn’t have any facilities. The rest has two small campgrounds, one resort, and the Yonca Lodge. A native family of the village runs the lodge. The place is set in a large orchard. While one side of the lodge faces the sweet gum trees, a small stream runs along the other side. The view is a beautiful, natural environment. There are cheerful ducks, wild hens, and frogs at the creek. The beach is especially quiet and there are sun loungers under the trees. Watch the stars and the Milky Way at the beach; spend the night at the beach when there is full moon. On a hot day, go on a little journey towards the source of Kargı Creek, which is fed by the springs coming from the canyons of the Western Taurus Mountains and crossing through the Yanıklar Village to meet the Mediterranean Sea at the beach, and feel refreshed in its cool waters. Go on a horse ride along the beach.