Tayrona National Park

We were back in Santa Marta and ready to tick off another one of Colombia’s must-do things. The Tayrona National Park was about a two hour bus ride from Santa Marta and super cheap, thanks to the local buses. Tayrona National Park not only has an immense natural importance on the region, but also it is a cultural treasure as it was once inhabited but the famous Tayrona tribe. Their culture is still present today with their direct descendants, the Koguis tribe still living and maintaining many of the original traditions.

We reached the park entrance and paid our entry fee (note – bring a student card if you have one, chops off 45% of the price!) and took a colectivo to the start of the hiking trail. We planned to stay in Arrecifes for the first night, mainly because it was the first stop on the trail! We hiked for about an hour through the Tayrona jungle, dodging long hanging branches and spotting monkeys. After being in busy Santa Marta it was nice to be back to nature, with hardly anyone in sight. Reaching the campsite dripping in sweat, we paid for our hammocks and dropped our bags off before heading to find some water to cool off in.

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However the beach at Arrecifes isn’t suitable for swimming due to its dangerous currents. Judging the currents and our swimming abilities, we decided to ignore the sign and paddle in the huge swell. This didn’t last long though as a security guard swiftly came over to tell us off. At least we got to cool down a little!

Food was next on the agenda so we headed off down the trail in search of comida. There were a couple more campsites and small restaurants as we walked along the trail. The park had a very ‘Lost’ feel about it, I was expecting to see a crashed plane and a tribe of people to come running out at any second! We gushed over the beautiful scenery and the amazing light of the setting sun before stumbling across a life-saver of a lady who sold the most delicious bread in the world! Freshly baked, still warm pan was just what we needed for an entree for dinner. We sampled the ham and cheese, the guava jam and cheese and the chocolate bread before telling the lady we would be back first thing in the morning to have it again for breakfast.

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After views in Tayrona National Park

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Beautiful sunsets

We found some dinner at a small restaurant at the next camp to ours. Full from the bread, we just had a small dinner before attempting to brave the walk home in the jungle alone. We were all set to go until some fellow travellers told us how they had just seen the alligators by the beach. Slightly freaking out, we ruled out walking back by the beach and decided to go via the way we came. However the topic of snakes popped up and suddenly we were too scared and stranded to walk back alone! Luckily a couple of locals were heading the same way we were so they guided us back through the jungle and we made it back to our hammocks snake-free. Sleep came easy that night, which was surprising because it was the first time I’d slept overnight in a hammock. But the clean hammock and solid mosquito net made for the perfect slumber, especially with the sound of the ocean lulling us to sleep.

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Our ‘hostel’ for the first night

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The following day we packed our bags up and hiked towards El Cabo San Juan. Despite it still being early, the sun was beating down on us hard. We dodged some monkeys and made a pit stop at La Piscina (‘the pool’ for those non-Spanish speakers) for a quick dip and to admire the amazing view. Finally the white sand, turquoise blue water dream I had been envisioning was starting to come to life.

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Horses for when you couldn’t hike anymore
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La Piscina – the ‘swimming pool’

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We walked onto El Cabo San Juan, which took about half an hour and jumped straight into the blue water. This place was way busier than where we had been previously, mainly because it was the most advertised area. We spent our day sun baking, swimming and generally enjoying life. L and I braved swimming out to a huge rock with some boys we met and managed to scar ourselves climbing up the rocks to jump into the ocean. Luckily there were no sharks nearby to smell the blood!

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Cabo San Juan

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We dined on garlic prawns and rice for dinner and played cards until it was an acceptable time for bed. This sun-baking business was tiring! Unfortunately I didn’t sleep so well in the hammocks here, they just weren’t as comfy as the night before.

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Fresh garlic prawns! Muy bueno!

After a fitful night of tossing and turning I was happy to get up and start the day. We had freshly cooked ‘caprese pan‘, which was warm bread filled with cheese, tomato and pesto sauce, washed down with a fresh maracuya juice. It wasn’t quite as sunny as yesterday but we still managed to get in some solid sun baking time. We considered staying another night but the thought of sleeping in those hammocks again put us off and we decided to head back to civilisation that day.

In the late afternoon we had a final meal at the only restaurant on Cabo San Juan and caught the boat back to Taganga and returned to our hostel in Santa Marta for a proper shower and a bed! Tomorrow we planned to go to Minca, the tiny village in the mountains about 40 minutes away from Santa Marta. I couldn’t wait!

J. x

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Castles before the Causeway.

We left early from our little B&B in Loch Lomond with a mission to be in Stanraer by noon to catch the ferry over to Northern Ireland. Though of course, we had a do one last castle in Scotland and did a flying visit through Culzean Castle, which was absolutely magnificent.

The grand Culzean Castle. Behind her is the ocean!
The grand Culzean Castle. Behind her is the ocean!

The entire property included a walled garden, a swan pond, deer paddocks and of course, the grandest looking castle I’ve seen in Scotland! The Culzean Castle is the former home of Marquess of Ailsa, the chief of Clan Kennedy.

The entrance gates to the Culzean
The entrance gates to the Culzean

The most impressive rooms were the armoury rooms and the grand oval staircase. It was unfortunate that we had to rush through because you could easily waste a day there enjoying the royal vibes.

A canoe bed! Looks pretty cosy!
A canoe bed! Looks pretty cosy!
One wall in the armoury room. Thats a whole lotta pistols!
One wall in the armoury room. Thats a whole lotta pistols!
A royal stag.
A royal stag.

Jumping on the freeway, we managed to make it to the ferry dock with five minutes to spare. Mum and Dad with their forward thinking had booked us into Premium Loading so we drove straight onto the ferry and had first pick of seats onboard. Go parents!

The ferry ride was uneventful but pleasant as we had scored lounge seats right near the window. Definitely opt for Premium Loading if you’re taking the ferry from Scotland to Ireland, well worth the extra pounds! It took about two and a half hours to reach Larne and us Premium Loading folks were first off the ship. There were about four or five guys with their Ferrari’s and other super fast cars that I know nothing about surrounding us. They had been revving their engines, showing off when we were loading and disembarking. It backfired on one guy in a red Ferrari though, his clutch stopped working just before the disembarking begin, leaving him a little red-faced!

We left the embarrassed Ferrari guy behind and speeded up towards Bushmills, where we would be staying for the night. We had plans to see the Giant’s Causeway the following morning but decided it would be better to visit in the fading sunlight, and boy, weren’t we correct.

Driving towards Bushmills
Driving towards Bushmills

The Giant’s Causeway is essentially a free attraction to see. You can pay to visit the information centre and have a tour guide, but seriously, all you want to do is see the crazy rock formations in real life. We walked down the Causeway, (which was actually a bit of a hike!) admiring the green, lush coastline. As we reached the Giant’s Causeway, it was hard not to be in awe of what nature can create.

Walking to the Giants Causeway
Walking to the Giants Causeway

The 40,000 interlocking basalt formations spread themselves along the coastline and the hexagonal shaped rocks are somewhat similar to bee’s honeycomb. The formations are a result of a volcanic eruption about 50 million years ago. Though, like most natural wonders, there is a legend about how it way created.  According to Gaelic mythology, the basalt columns are the remains of a causeway created by the Irish giant Fionn man Cumhaill (Finn MacCool). After being challenged to fight by Scottish giant Benandonner, Fionn accepted and built the causeway across the North Channel so the two giants could meet. In some stories, Fionn wins the battle, though in others he loses and destroys the causeway so no more battles can occur. Whatever way the story ended, the result of the rock formation has fascinated humans for many years.

Result of volcanic eruption or leftovers of a giant's path to battle?
Result of volcanic eruption or leftovers of a giant’s path to battle?
Admiring the honeycomb rocks
Admiring the honeycomb rocks

We climbed and clambered over the honeycomb shaped rocks and watched the sky turn all shades of gold and blue with the disappearing sun. Definitely was a smart choice to visit in the late afternoon.  We caught the last bus back up the hill and drove the 200 metres to where we were staying for the night, at the Ballylinny Holiday Cottages.

Seeing more of Northern Ireland tomorrow!

 

J. x

Searchin’ for Nessie.

Heyoo – Due to the last couple of weeks being an absolute blur, I’m a bit behind in my stories. I’m back home in Australia now, but am telling them as if I was still up to date with my travels. J.x 

We left Newtonmore and headed up to Inverness which we would bypass completely and head down one of the greatest driving roads known to man, the A82. 

The A82 is the road to drive down if you’re going from Inverness to Glasgow. Not only does it take you past Loch Ness, Loch Lomond and Ben Nevis. It winds you through the incredible Scottish landscapes, from the dark black lochs to the mountainous range in the Highlands.

Not a bad view to drive with..
Not a bad view to drive with..

We started our drive and before we knew it, the deep dark waters of Loch Ness were beside us. I always assumed Loch Ness was just a  big lake that you could walk around, but its actually bloody massive! We drove along for a good half an hour before pulling up for a coffee break. The water is jet black and apparently super deep, with its deepest point coming in at 230 metres. You could probably get to China from there! :p

Loch Ness on a beautiful sunny day - a rarity for Scotland.
Loch Ness on a beautiful sunny day – a rarity for Scotland.

Of course, the most famous aspect to Loch Ness is the elusive Loch Ness Monster. There have been many searches for old Nessie but is now regarded as a modern day myth. Nonetheless, the area surrounding Loch Ness sure market Nessie impressively. There are Nessie ciders, shirts, and even a Loch Ness Discovery Centre known as Nessieland. We skipped past it and headed towards Urquhart Castle, who stands grandly on the edge of Loch Ness.

Someone found Nessie! Or her long lost sister
Someone found Nessie! Or her long lost sister

The castle dates back to the 13th century and was mainly used as a royal residence. However due to many raids, the castle was abandoned in the 17th century until it was opened to the public in  the 20th century. It is one of the most visited castles in Scotland, due to its beautiful location and remarkably well kept ruins.

Urquhart Castle perched on the edge of Loch Ness
Urquhart Castle perched on the edge of Loch Ness
Urquhart Castle from afar
Urquhart Castle from afar

We jumped back in the car continued down the A82 until we reached the end of Loch Ness. Though our view wasn’t about to take a turn for the worse, as soon as Loch Ness finished, we were blessed with several other Lochs, including Loch Oich and Loch Lochy. The dark, still water contrasting against the mountains topped with fog were anything but an eyesore. This part of Scotland was just too good lookin’ for words.

Dad and I tempting Nessie..
Dad and I tempting Nessie..

While we didn’t find Nessie (though I swear I saw ripples!), the beautiful scenery kept up spirits high. We had only covered a part of the A82, but I was eager to see where the rest of the road took us.

Keep reading for what the rest of the Highlands brings us!

J. x

Cumbrian Heavy Horses

Today’s events are why I love travelling 🙂

Mum, Dad and I had left Starbotton in the direction of the beautiful Lake District. All we had was accommodation for the night booked in Keswick, about a two-hour drive away. The rest of the day was up to us to fill. We had stopped in the town of Kendal for a look around and a much needed coffee. Kendal didn’t look like much of a town as we drove in, but once we got out of the car and had a wander around, it turned out to be a great little town.

We had coffee at The Famous 1657 Chocolate House that made the most wicked chocolate cake I’ve tasted. It was an adorable two-story building on a serious slant and with a very low roof. I felt a bit like Alice in Wonderland after she drinks the potion and grew to a giant! We were perusing through local magazines as we sipped our coffee and came across an ad for Cumbrian Heavy Horses – the only company in the world that offers rides on heavy horses, such as Clydesdales and Shire Horses. The three of us, having horse withdrawals called them immediately and booked in for an afternoon ride. We chugged down the rest of our coffee and practically ran to the car, we had plans for the day!

Cumbrian Heavy Horses
Cumbrian Heavy Horses

It was about an hours drive to the farm and took us through more incredible countryside. The grass is that green that it hurts your eyes. As we neared the farm we could just see the Irish Sea in the distance past the paddocks. The Cumbrian Heavy Horse Farm was your typical English farm, a huge stone house, big green paddocks and blackberries spilling over the fences. They had about twenty horses, all beautiful big draught horses which I instantly fell in love with.

Lifes tough at Cumbrian
Lifes tough at Cumbrian
You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours?
You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours?

We had a briefing with Johnny our riding leader and assigned our horses. I am probably a bit biased here but I think I scored with the best horse, Zac. He was a giant 18.2hh black Shire horse with fluffy white, feathered legs and a big white blaze. His head was pretty much the length of my upper body and his hooves were the size of dinner plates. But he was very gentle and loved getting his ears rubbed. Mum was on a bay Clydie called Miri and Dad had a roan Shire horse called Otto.

Zac and me!
Zac and me!

We mounted (with the help of a very big mounting block!) and had a walk around to get used to the horses large, long strolling walk. As we were riding in little dressage saddles, I felt a bit wary compared to how I feel riding in my bigger stock saddles. Though as we rode on, I went back to my Pony Club Days and got used to the smaller saddles.

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We rode out through the paddocks, trotting and cantering in places but mostly enjoying this unique way to see the countryside. Zac had this lovely loping canter that felt like a rocking chair and even though my butt ached from not riding for over a year, I didn’t want to get off him!

Dad, Mum and I. Not quite the Australian Stock Horses we have at home, but just as fun!
Dad, Mum and I. Not quite the Australian Stock Horses we have at home, but just as fun!

The ride went far too quickly, even though we went for over two hours. Once we reached the stables again, we gave our new giant friends one last cuddle and pat, thanked the owners and headed off towards the Lake District.

The Cumbrian Heavy Horse stables
The Cumbrian Heavy Horse stables

The whole day was such a fun and different experience. It’s always the spontaneous decisions that turn out the best fun. I’m so glad we picked us the magazine in Kendal that led us to Cumbrian Heavy Horses. It’s an experience that I won’t ever forgot! Even if I have a sore butt for the next few days!

Didn't want to leave this guy behind :( He was such a honey!
Didn’t want to leave this guy behind 😦 He was such a honey!

 

J. x

The Blue Lagoon – Not Quite What I Expected.

Alright, if you read my posts a bit (and ginormous thank you if you do!) then you will know that I’m a little bit of a Pinterest lover. I do get a lot of my travel inspiration and ideas from there and it is also the sole reason why I have such high expectations of certain places. The Blue Lagoon in Ölüdeniz is one of these places.

Pictures of sapphire blue water, snow white sand and absolutely no people laying on the beach flooded my Pinterest feed whenever I searched ‘Blue Lagoon Turkey’. So as one would, I gathered up high hopes that I will witness paradise and total tranquility. Unfortunately, the Pinterest curse strikes yet again.

The Blue Lagoon is a small inlet bay connected to the beach of Ölüdeniz. Now don’t get me wrong, the beach and lagoon itself are some of the prettiest I’ve seen. The water truly is a combination of aquamarine and turquoise, and the white pebbles reflect in the sunlight.

Ölüdeniz and the Blue Lagoon.
Ölüdeniz and the Blue Lagoon.

It’s just the masses and masses of tourists that flood the lagoon which are the biggest turn-off. Of course, I came in the middle of peak season. Hotels are booked out, restaurants are overflowing and prices are double to what they usually are. I expected this. However my experience with the Blue Lagoon left me a little salty.

After reaching Ölüdeniz from Kabak Valley, I walked to the right (facing the ocean) about 200 metres where I reached the entrance gates to the Blue Lagoon. After waiting behind a large group of British folk, I paid 6TL to enter. Like I said before, I was expected it to be busy, I just didn’t expect it to be this busy. The path goes from the entrance gate right around the inlet and its about 300 metres to the point of the inlet. In this stretch, hundreds of people were rushing about, trying to find an empty sun bed, which was no easy feat, even though the sun beds were lined up side by side and about five sun beds deep. The place was a madhouse.

This was the start of the umbrella packed lagoon. It got exponentially worse.
This was the start of the umbrella packed lagoon. It got exponentially worse.

Not wanting to pay the extra Lira for a sun bed, I kept walking hoping to find a spare bit of space to park myself. No such luck. Every inch of the Blue Lagoon’s pebbled beach was covered by human flesh. I made my way down to the water, stepping over a few children and bags and looked for the paradise that Pinterest promised me.

Realising I wouldn’t find it here, I walked back down the path, out of the inlet, past the restaurant and the banana boats, to where there were only a few sun beds and about half the people. Dripping with sweat by this stage, I dropped my bag close to the water and dove in.

They weren't lying about the water colour.
They weren’t lying about the water colour.

To be fair, it was beautiful. Despite the hordes of tourists, the view beyond was pretty amazing and the water was still had that crazy clearness that I couldn’t get over. Babadag and the other huge mountains loomed over the bay and the sky was and endless amount of blue.

From where I sat, between the Blue Lagoon and Ölüdeniz.
From where I sat, between the Blue Lagoon and Ölüdeniz.

I stayed for a little while, before the scorching sun got too much and headed back towards the busier Ölüdeniz to take refuge in some shade.

What I Suggest For The Blue Lagoon:

  • DON’T GO IN AUGUST! Unless you enjoy enjoy playing tinned sardines with other tourists
  • Go early to beat the crowd and the heat.
  • Don’t go right into the Lagoon. The water is just as pretty outside on the other side of the inlet, with slightly less people.
  • Enjoy it from above. Check out my paragliding experience for a big fat reason why 🙂

J. x

Paragliding in Ölüdeniz.

If theres one thing I like to do when travelling, its finding the biggest, most popular, adventure touristy thing to do while in a new place. In Tromsø it reindeer sleighing, in Cappadocia it was hot air ballooning and now in Ölüdeniz, it’s paragliding.

Ölüdeniz is famous for its Father Mountain (Babadag) where people from all corners of the Earth come to launch themselves off the top of the mountain. It is regarded as one of the best sites for paragliding in the world due to it’s unique panoramic views of Ölüdeniz and the Blue Lagoon. Having seen photos upon photos of the magnificent views and rave reports about paragliding, I couldn’t resist signing myself up for it.

Seriously Turkey. Why have you been hiding this for all this time!
Seriously Turkey. Why have you been hiding this for all this time!
Ölüdeniz and the Blue Lagoon. Absolute perfection.
Ölüdeniz and the Blue Lagoon. Absolute perfection.

I organised my paraglide through Gravity Tandem Paragliding (http://www.flygravity.com)  who were excellent in accommodating this blondie off a mountain. My first paraglide was supposed to be scheduled for the Friday before. However due to strong winds they had to cancel, which gave me four days to work up a massive amount of nervous energy and anticipation.

Tuesday rolled around and I caught the two buses to Ölüdeniz from where I was staying in Kabak Valley and met the Gravity team at their shop. There was about twenty other people in the office as well and after quick wait we were herded down to their headquarters, where we were put into groups and taken up the mountain in a mini-van.

The drive up was spectacular and windy as we drove higher and high heading for the clouds. We were told to pick from a deck of cards to determine who our flight guide was and I picked Apo, a tough looking Turkish man who wore a bandana and rode a motorcycle. We were dropped off at the launching point which was pretty much an area that was concreted down to the edge, where we had to run off. There was also a restaurant there, but no time for coffee with a view, I had jumping to do.

Part of Mount Babadag, the best point for paragliding in Europe
Part of Mount Babadag, the best point for paragliding in Europe

Apo harnessed me up (in a non S&M way :O ) and we were hooked up to the parachute, ready for launching. There were others around me who were already running off the cliff and watching them race for the edge made my heart race. The nerves definitely were sinking in! Much like the morning sky in Cappadocia filled with hot air balloons, the sky was filled with colourful parachutes. Apparently around 150 flights are made each day in the peak season, with each paragliding guide doing at least three to five jumps a day!

Apo informed me it was our turn to run so I obliged and started jogging towards the edge. Its sort of difficult to run with someone strapped behind you, as well as the parachute so I just moved my feet while Apo pushed me forward until we were dangling in mid air.

Flying high above the mountains -
Flying high above the mountains – excuse the dorky blonde person sitting in front.

Before I knew it, we were soaring high above Ölüdeniz and the mountains surrounding the glorious beach. It was surprisingly peaceful flying this high up, despite only being strapped in by a couple of straps! If there was ever a time in my life that I felt like a bird, this was it. Oh the freedom they must feel!

I'm like a biiiiiirdddd! I wanna fly away!
I’m like a biiiiiirdddd! I wanna fly away!

Apo asked me if I wanted to do any acrobatics and I scoffed, of course I would. He told me to hold on and spun us around and around, dipping from side to side. The G-force was incredible, I couldn’t even lift my arms up.

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We settled back into soaring and spent the next few moments in silence, admiring the view and wiping the tears that had accumulated in my eyes from the fast winds of the acrobatics.

Gravity Tandem Paragliding http://www.flygravity.com  My pick of paragliding companies, very good!
Gravity Tandem Paragliding – http://www.flygravity.com
My pick of paragliding companies, very good!

We soared further over the beach and the royal blue waters, which sparkled in the sunlight. I could now see why it was the best place for paragliding, the view is nothing short of epic.

This view, I cannot even..
This view, I cannot even..
Excuse the dorky helmet, that was just the 'safety precaution' for take off and landing.. Gotta love Turkish safety regulations!
Excuse the dorky helmet, that was just the ‘safety precaution’ for take off and landing.. Gotta love Turkish safety regulations!

We glided further down towards the beach and the busy streets of Ölüdeniz where we did a few more acrobatics before preparing to land. The funny thing about paragliding here is that the landing spot in right in the main walkway of Ölüdeniz. Every few minutes you’ll hear ‘Landing!’ and a few Turkish boys running towards an incoming paraglider, all while tourists duck out of the way.

The landing strip - AKA the main walkway of Ölüdeniz
The landing strip – AKA the main walkway of Ölüdeniz

I asked Apo if he had ever run anybody over, he just smiled devilishly and said “Just a few”.

The landing was a lot smoother than I had anticipated and I didn’t fall over like I thought I might. I’m pretty much a pro now! Now on land, I felt like we only jumped off five minutes ago, when in fact it had been about 25 minutes. I was itching to go again, but settled for watching the other paragliders in the sky.

After Apo packed up his parachute, we walked to the headquarters where we showed me my pictures and videos of the flight. I wasn’t intending on buying them, buuuuuut as I like to say ‘When in Rome!’, unfortunately my credit card starting to disagree..

Paragliding is definitely a must when visiting Ölüdeniz, or even anywhere in the south of Turkey. You can’t beat the views and its one of those ‘once in a lifetime’ experiences that you’ll never forget! There are so many paragliding companies in  Ölüdeniz that you can choose from. Most of them are pretty open to giving you a good deal, however you’re looking at around 200-280TL for a flight. Do it! It’s absolutely worth it!

J. x

 

Boatin’ and Beachin’ in Bodrum

So far my trip through Turkey had been a whirlwind of travelling, tourist attraction visiting and doing copious amounts of eating. So as K and I headed south towards the coast, I was keen for a few days of being a lazy ass and slothing it out on the beach.

We arrived into Bodrum around 1:30pm and made our way to Bodrum Backpackers, our accommodation for the next few nights. Bodrum Backpackers is surprisingly the only backpackers hostel in Bodrum, and they do their darnedest to make sure travellers get cheap accommodation. This may mean sleeping on the couch out on the deck or flooring it with a spare mattress, but if they can squeeze you in they will! We walked in and there were bags everywhere, phones charging at every spare outlet and writing all over the walls. It looked like a 20-somethings flat, who had about 50 friends crash for the weekend. There were two Scots running the joint, who welcomed us in like old pals and we were shown our room. Somehow despite booking the double room, K and I ended up in a single room, with a spare mattress for the floor.  A little apprehensive, we YOLO-ed (sorry, but we really did) and shoved our stuff in the shoebox sized room, put on our swimmers and made a beeline for the beach.

Bodrum, was to put it nicely – nothing like what I expected. We were told it was a chilled out little beach town, so I had visions of a place similar to Byron Bay or even one of the Gili Islands off Lombok. But no, Bodrum was equivalent to say, Thailand’s Patong Beach or Kuta in Bali. The beach was lined with beach chairs occupied by slowly darkening Euros, the shops sold tacky souvenirs and fake Dre Beats and fake Converse and the restaurants boasted about their ‘Full English Breakfast’ or ‘All day cocktails!’ There seemed nothing Turkish about the place at all, except the currency. Though I will admit, I wasn’t overly fussed – I just wanted some sun and salty water.

We made a perch at Cafe Del Mar, which was the regular jaunt for Backpacker Bodrum guests. After finding a lounge we raced for the water and splashed about the the remarkably clear water. We spent the afternoon between swimming, reading and chatting with other people from the hostel who had joined us. With every intention of checking out a bit more of Bodrum, we ended up spending the entire afternoon lazing about. And to be totally honest, it was perfect.

Around 5:30pm we packed up and had a look around the streets in search of a (very) late lunch. We managed to find a Turkish kebab place which was tasty, but nothing compared to the food we had been eating in other places. Heading back to the hostel for a shower, we booked a boat cruise for the following day and had a few drinks at the hostel bar, chatting with other travellers (predominately Aussie of course) until retired to bed, tired and red.

Sunsets over Bodrum Beach
Sunsets over Bodrum Beach

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The following morning we woke up and sought out some breakfast as the hostel didn’t offer any. We had until 10:30am until our boat cruise started so we wandered the streets, looking at all the shops before making our way to the cruise harbour where we would take off from.

For just 30TL, we were taken around five different coves and swimming spots, given lunch and an entire top deck to sun bake on. Deal of the trip – abso-freaking-lutely! The day was utter loveliness. K and I sunbaked, swam, read, napped and just enjoyed the fun of sailing.

Sailing in Turkey - a must do!
Sailing in Turkey – a must do!

I can’t emphasise how much you should do a gulet cruise in Turkey. Its the best way to see the beauty of the Turkish coastline, and it’s a day of total relaxation. I won’t go into too much detail, well because theres no much to tell. You sail, swim and relax. How much more convincing do you need!? More? Okay, heres’s some photos to tempt you..

Docking for a swim.
Docking for a swim.
Crystal clear waters
Crystal clear waters
Jump off the boat
Jump off the boat
Get some serious beach hair (and serious sunburn!)
Get some serious beach hair (and serious sunburn!)
Blue, Blue, Blue!
Blue, Blue, Blue!
Ain't no filter for this water. It's this damn blue and clear!
Ain’t no filter for this water. It’s this damn blue and clear! Don’t mind my terrible GoPro-ing abilities

We docked back in Bodrum around 5-ish and took our sunburnt, relaxed bodies straight back to the hostel. Its surprising how tiring doing nothing can be! We stayed up for awhile chatting with new travellers who had arrived (more Aussies) before calling it a night, ready for our next spontaneous adventure.

Stay tuned for where we are randomly heading next!

J. x