We left Fethiye at a respectable hour, around 9am, for the 12-islands area of Gocek. We hadn’t planned on this but once again we were guided by a chance encounter with another cruiser.
We met Jack, a Swiss national now living in a rural area of France, in the bar/restaurant of Yes Marina in Fethiye. Jack is a retired Railway Engineer who has lived and worked in many places in the world, particularly Africa. Now he lives on a rural block in France and has his Catamaran in Yes Marina. He cruises up and down the area and insisted we should visit the islands near Gocek. So off we went.
We first stopped in Yasica Adelari after nosing around a couple of potential anchorages and deciding against them. We picked up a buoy and stayed two nights on it. The area is a special zone – no discharge of anything, 11-day maximum stay, tie-up points set in concrete on the shore so you don’t tie to trees (illegal in all of Turkey now).
After two pleasant nights doing nothing, we headed down the way a little to Tersane Creek on Tersane Island. As it was only a short distance, I took the opportunity to run the Yanmar hard and we crossed between islands in only 40 minutes.
In Tersane Creek, we tied up to the restaurant’s pontoon. Usual deal, free tie up if you use the restaurant. And a most pleasant restaurant it was indeed. Our first encounter there was with Claude Ducat and his wife Lauren. Claude is a retired Contre-Amiral in La Royale, as the French Navy is affectionately known. Lauren was something of trailblazer – she developed a business taking executives from very large companies out into the African desert on testing encounters to extend them. I would not do justice to the exquisite depth of detail involved in her expeditions by attempting to describe it here – suffice to say it was unique in scope and rationale and was paid for by some of the largest companies in France and Europe (Michelin, Renault) and they were certain they were getting value for money. Claude and Lauren now have a beautifully restored/rebuilt luxury Gulet that they offer for charter in season. Their first guests this year are…. Yep, a publican from Western Australia and his family. Their new chef on board is…. Martin, aged 27, but from Bristol, not Bunbury. We went aboard Patronice sailpatronice.com/ for a relaxing drink with them.
From Tersane Creek we motored around to Marmaris, and managed to get the sails up for an hour or so. (that made a change!) We anchored in the anchoring field off the hotel strip and spent the next 5 days there.