The months of September and October offer beautiful, fine days and cooler nighttime temperatures. The water is warm and ideal for swimming and water sports. Climbing to hilltop ruins is still best enjoyed in the early morning hours or during the late afternoon, but the Dalyan River and Ancient Caunos tour, taking anywhere between 3 and 5 hours, is a comfortable trip at this time of the year -- in short, your clients can enjoy the very best that the coast has to offer, without the crowds and the sapping heat of July and August.
The weather here on the south-west coast of Turkey does not change until very late October and often times we have brilliant weather right into the first half of November. Where there is the possibility of a short shower in late October, it is not likely to become set-in rain and really only serves to freshen the air! Cooler nights mean you have to cover up while out on the water, but a nice pashmina, or a light pullover ought to do the job.
September and October are also the perfect time of year to enjoy the abundance of Turkey's sun-ripened fresh fruit and vegetables. Peaches are at their best in September -- large and juicy -- as are figs, plums, melons and grapes. And the variety of fresh vegetables will ensure that one or two different vegetarian dishes appear with each spread.
The best itineraries to enjoy at this time of year are the "Gulf of Hisaronu" and "Gulf of Fethiye" itineraries. The quieter of the two itineraries is the Gulf of Hisaronu itinerary, which takes in the fabulous archaeological sites of ancient Knidos and ancient Loryma.
This itinerary is given below:
Bodrum to Marmaris via Knidos - The "Gulf of Hisaronu" itinerary
Embark in Bodrum in the afternoon and sail south to Mersincik, a small cove with crystal-clear waters and one of the prettiest stops along this stretch of the coast. Enjoy dinner on board in Mersincik Harbour.
Rounding the tip of the Datca Peninsula, anchor in the eastern bay at Knidos. After lunch, go ashore and explore the ruins of this ancient Carian city, famous as a centre of art and culture in the fourth century B.C.
Knidos was once a flourishing trade city and had two theatres, two harbours and a large number of residential homes. Praxiteles’ most famous statue, the Aphrodite of Knidos, was a tourist attraction here and many, many sea travelers would come to Knidos specifically to see it. The remains of this temple are visible today, as are those of the agora, the theatre, an odeum and a temple of Dionysus - among many other interesting buildings and structures. In the late afternoon, move on to Hayit Buku and a chance to walk the shores of this lovely little bay. Hayit Buku, with its backdrop of majestic mountains, is a truly magical place. Swim, snorkel and enjoy some walking around the village. Tonight, dine in typical Turkish style at a local’s “lokanta” - Ogun’s Place has been a favorite for years!
Today begins with a sail along the eastern side of the Datca Peninsula with perhaps a visit to the town of Datca for sightseeing in old Datca town. In the afternoon, cruise up the Gulf and into Selimiye, anchoring alongside a small quay, close to the village. Selimiye is a farming and fishing community, situated along the shores of a large bay and offers yet another superb backdrop - this time featuring well-rounded hills that descend through olive groves and almond orchards to the shore. Dine ashore tonight at a nearby fish restaurant serving some of the finest local specialities.
To Keci Buku Bay, where we have a chance to visit the village of Orhaniye, set at the foot of tall, pine-forested mountains. Walk along an isthmus of red sand, stroll through the village or explore the island in the middle of the bay - topped, as it is, by an ancient fort. Spend time in idyllic surroundings before moving on to Dislice Island for the night. Dinner on board anchored off Dislice Island.
After a leisurely morning of swimming and perhaps some kayaking around the island or in nearby Bencik Bay, cruise for Dirsek and stay for lunch. Bozburun beckons later in the day, and as it is set among islets and inlets, have your camera on the ready to capture your arrival. Bozburun was once the sponge-fishing capital of Turkey but is now regarded as one of the country’s boat-building centres. There will be time to explore this charming little port - with its small selection of shops and cafes - after dinner on board.
From Bozburun, we make the short journey to Bozukkale, and anchor beneath the walls of ancient Loryma’s well-preserved citadel. This is an ideal place to enjoy watersports of all kinds and a trip ashore will bring some rewarding discoveries - among them, the fabulous view of the nearby Greek island of Rhodes. Enjoy another excellent meal on board tonight.
Cruise to Serce Harbour and spend the morning swimming, snorkelling and kayaking. It was here, at Serce Harbour that George Bass discovered the famous Islamic Glass Wreck. Continue on to the pretty anchorage of Kadirga, or, if there are plans for a final night’s party ashore, sail a little further and moor on the quay at Kumlu Buku Yacht Club. The “Yacht Club” has an excellent menu with both local and international dishes on offer and is set among carefully-tended gardens, overlooking a pebbled beach.
To Marmaris for disembarkation.
The Marmaris - Gocek itinerary takes in Ekincik and with it the opportunity to visit ancient Caunos and the Dalyan River Delta. There is nightlife to be had in Gocek and Fethiye and a good number of things to do which will easily fill a week.