By Justin Mays:
Looking for something to add to your bucket list for summer? Consider the Blue Cruise. The Blue Cruise is along the fabled Turkish Riviera. Also popularly known as the Turquoise Coast for its 600 miles of stunning coast along the Aegean and Mediterranean seas. The best way to explore its secrets is to take a boat, the Blue Cruise, to navigate its deep blue waters. Pine-clad mountains that dip into the sapphire sea, ancient sites, and secluded swimming coves only accessible from the water have been beckoning visitors for millennia. The best way to enjoy it is by hiring a yacht or a wooden gulet-the large local sailing boat. Traditionally gulets were used for fishing and sponge diving, but the design recently changed to accommodate sea-loving explorers.
Where is the Turquoise Coast?
Set sail along southwest Turkey which encompasses the Antalya and Mugla provinces and, to a lesser extent, southern Izmir and western Mersin. Three airports service the Turquoise Coast, Antalya, Bodrum, and Dalaman. You can also reach it by long-distance inner-city bus and travel between the areas with local minibusses.
Most blue cruises start from either Fethiye, Marmaris, Antalya, Bodrum, or the yachting center of Gocek. Popular Blue Cruise stops are Gocek’s islands, Butterfly Valley, Datca, Bozburun, and Dalaman.
Planning a Blue Cruise
Dazzling turquoise waters await, but first, there is some planning to be done.
Traversing the Aegean and Mediterranean coasts requires technical knowledge and well-serviced boats. There are options for all budgets. The cheapest option is to reserve an individual cabin on a boat with other travelers and make friends along the way. You can hire an elegant gulet or chic motor yacht at the high end. Most importantly, you should hire a charter with an experienced crew and always ask for their credentials and if they have any references to ensure your safety.
Blue Cruise Activities
Swim, explore and enjoy the Turkish Riviera
Your day typically starts with a full Turkish breakfast with local honey, cheese, and olives. A morning dip, yoga or sports on deck, or cruising around via tender to see what ancient sites or walking trails are ready to explore on land usually follows.
Many spend afternoons lounging on the deck and jumping into the water. Some boats have water toys like paddle boards available to use.
Evenings are spent onshore at places like Yazz Collective, Bozburun Yacht Club, the luxury restaurants at D-Maris, or exploring small towns and cities with their high-end boutiques, good restaurants, and lovely seaside promenades. Some opt to stay on the boat and have dinner on deck under the starry night sky.
There is something for everyone; it can be the most active or relaxing trip you have ever imagined. With jaw-dropping scenery surrounding you as you cruise through the dazzling waters, there is no wrong option when choosing how to spend your blue cruise holiday.