When departing from Bodrum its best to start with something sensational to kick off the vacation, that why sailing to the Gulf of Hisonaru and onwards to Kos, which is due east and clos by will be a wonderful way to whet your appetite for all the wonderful mysteries that lie ahead. Imagine the Odysseus and look down into the clear blue sea as your yacht sails over horizons that have served mankind for millennia. What was once the garden of Neptune is now your grazing ground.
Kos is one of the most prominent Dodecanese islands, most probably only second to Rhodes. This is where Hippocrates taught in the Asklepion, the ancient Greek college that was set under a Plane tree that still stands in its place. Kos is steeped in history, and there are many archeological treats to find here, including Corinthian columns that line the roads, the Castle of the Knights of Saint John, and the famous Kos harbor. With all this magnificent history, it is not surprising to see how modern tourism fits in perfectly, with an international marina, lost of shops, tavernas and leading restaurants that offer local cuisine as well as international dishes.
Early in the morning, we will have a swimming break at a bay of Gyali Island on the way to Nisyros Island. Gyali is a small volcanic island that is situated just south of Kos and above north from Nisyros Island. This is not a tourist site, in fact, it’s a very industrious strip mining operation. There is a special thermo powder called “Perli” mined here and shipped all over the world. It's also a great sail to see how strip mining can reduce an island. There is a small islet nearby which you can anchor off and enjoy.
In the center of the Dodecanes group of islands you will find Nisyros island. This small island is volcanic but full of vegetation and has a rich history and culture. There are approximately 1,000 inhabitants and the there is still an active volcano in the center, called Stefanos crater. The town of Mandraki has a lovely port and this picturesque village is filled with tourists visiting the natural beauty of this island. There are many small coves to anchor off, or you can just visit Mandraki and enjoy the whitewashed houses with blue windows that stand out form a clear blue sky and warm brown mountainside.
Our next destination is the charming bay of Nanou in Symi Island where the boat will anchor for lunch and a swimming break. We will anchor at Symi Port late in the afternoon. You can see the shoreline with its neo-classical houses and the peripheral districts. You are going to adore Symi Island for its pine and oak forests and unique bays.
Rhodes is a world-famous island, with its UNESCO world heritage town and is the largest of the Dodecanese islands. Rhodes has over 200 kilometers of coastline and is filled with everything an advanced society based on ancient heritage can provide. You have access to culture, architecture, history, religion, entertainment and of course, cuisine. Unfortunately, what you cannot get is a view of the colossus of Rhodes, this amazing feat of ancient sculpture was destroyed in an earthquake centuries ago, but there is plenty more to see around the old walled town.
One of the popular coastal stops is Datca, a small southern shore yachting stop over 75kms west of Marmaris. Datca is located in an area that provides you with many small covers along the peninsula, so you can anchor along the coastline and enjoy a swim in the privacy of your own cove. The coast is dotted with small fishing villages and farming towns, and the local tomatoes and olives are famous for their depth of taste. While visiting Datca, enjoy some local produce and maybe even ask your chef to use it as a staple ingredient.
At the extreme southwest of Turkey, along the Datca peninsula, sits the small archeological town of Knidos. This is one of Turkeys finest historical legends preserved in amazing condition. You find the Statue of Demeter in one location, and in the ancient harbor there were two Lions that stand guard but are now in the British Museum in London. The main attractions are the temple of Aphrodite and the Necropolis. Excavations are ongoing, and have been unearthing more and more amazing finds for over half a century. Since Knidos is considered to be remote, the best way to reach it is by yacht. This is a must stop for all yacht charters, and one site that will provide a lot of great memoires as well as photos.
Just north of Bodrum you will find the nose shaped bay of Pabuc Burnu. This is considered to be good place to anchor, ad the clear blue waters provide for a nice dip in the sea, as well as a short visit onshore.
After an exceptional yacht charter, you come sail back to Bodrum and prepare for your flight home. This is a perfect time to visit this wonderful city and enjoy your last (but not final) taste of Turkey. Bodrum is a jewel surrounded golden sunsets and azure waters. You really should partake in all the local cuisine, cultural attractions and visit the waterfront outside the famous Bodrum Castle, built from the stones of the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus. It houses an amazing underwater archeology museum and is a must see when in Bodrum.