The southwestern coast of Turkey offers many activities and discoveries especially in the small towns of Fethiye and Demre.
Whether you enjoy swimming in turquoise blue waters, paragliding from mountaintops or shopping for trinkets, a tour from the seaside town of Fethiye to Demre will provide what ever your heart may desire.
Start the Voyage in Fethiye
While the Fethiye Demre blue cruise is only 3 days, you are guaranteed enough time to uncover what makes this region on the Mediterranean so special.
The lively town of Fethiye offers many local and international restaurants that will suit anyone’s tastes as you wait for your blue cruise to begin. You can also shop for souvenirs and local Turkish handcrafts.
Stop in Saint Nicholas Island
The Fethiye-Demre blue cruise will stop at the island of St. Nicholas, who is most famous for inspiring the legend of Santa Claus. He was supposedly buried on the island until pirate raids threatened his protection and his body was eventually moved. There are five churches to explore dating from the 4th, 5th and 5th centuries AD. The only access to the island is by boat, so crowds are not a big problem.
Watersports are popular in the bay around the island, so rent water skis or jump on a ring for a ride around the sea. Wake boarding and parasailing will satisfy your need for adrenaline.
Adventures in Oludeniz and Butterfly Valley
After leaving St. Nicholas Island, you will spend time at Oludeniz- Europe’s most photographed beach. You can para glide from the top of Babadag mountain and breathe in the stunning scenery of Oludeniz, Fethiye and the Blue Lagoon. If you prefer to keep your feet on the ground then relax and sunbathe on the sandy beaches.
If hiking through pristine nature is more pleasurable for you then take a trek through Butterfly Valley, one of the most popular destinations for ecotourism.
The Valley is a nature preserve meaning there is no construction, which attracts campers from all over the world. There is a small restaurant and bar to provide refreshments and sustenance.
There are 105 butterfly species that inhabit the valley named after them and can be seen from June to September.
Dive in Aquarium Bay
As the name suggests, this bay is full of marine life to entertain both snorkelers and scuba divers alike. Much like an aquarium but without glass walls, you can see colorful clownfish, giant groupers, damselfish, red mullets, black eyes, bright orange sponges and the occasional octopus. The waters are so clear you may be able to spot these underwater beings without the use of goggles.
Shopping in Kas
On to Kas we go for more beautiful blue seas ready to welcome every swimmer and diver. If you need a break from the water, head to the marina for a cold beer or glass of local wine. Many shops offering clothing, traditional handcrafts such as ceramics and blown glass jewelry, flip-flops and sunglasses or ice cream and newspapers are ready to welcome you.
If you walk about the town you will see ancient Lycian rock tombs in the most random of places. Take a moment to read the history in order to grasp the importance of preserving these precious relics.
The Antique Cities of Kekova and Simena
Partially sunken ruins can be found along the island of Kekova. An earthquake nearly 2,000 years ago almost destroyed the northern part of the island, however some buildings and tombs still remain. The area is protected, thus swimming and diving are prohibited in order to preserve the history.
Return ashore and visit the very old town of Simena to learn more about this historic area. The Byzantines used Simena Castle, which dates back to the 4th century BC, in the Middle Ages. A well-intact theatre will help you envision how people of those times had entertainment.
The Destination of Demre
Our final stop on the Fethiye Blue Cruise is the Lycian town of Myra. This lovely burg was home to Saint Nicholas, some peoples’ beloved Santa Claus. The original church in the town attracts Christian pilgrims from regions around the world who give their respect to St. Nicholas.
This ancient city was inhabited by Greeks before they were forced to flee in the 1920s. Some of their empty homes remain, allowing insight into the rich culture of this area along with the turmoil and conflicts in past years.
Visit Ipek Restaurant for classic Turkish fare or grab a cold beer and watch the sunset at Kumsal Restaurant and Bar.
For a once in a lifetime chance to explore sunken ruins, swim with octopus, shop for traditional Turkish crafts or eat fresh seafood, you should absolutely take a Fethiye Blue Cruise on the captivating Mediterranean coast.