Woah nelly my holiday was a long time coming this year! I hadn’t had a week off work since Christmas so was counting down the days until October 15th when my boyfriend and I would finally be off on our (very late) summer hols! We went to Fethiye in Turkey last year and fell in love with the beautiful scenery, peaceful atmosphere and friendly people so we were very keen to head back to Turkey (where we were also still pretty much guaranteed some sun in October) Tony had read an article about Akyaka – a small village popular with Turkish holiday makers – which is famous for its natural beauty and good food – and is just down the coast from Fethiye, so we decided to head there for some last minute sunshine.
We managed to get an amazing deal on our accommodation, a small boutique hotel with its own private beach, swimming pool and duck pond, which was just around the bay from the main town, and rated number one on TripAdvisor. It was absolutely stunning – a little oasis of calm, and although our room was relatively small, the private beach and dock more than made up for it. It was so lovely to come back from a day exploring to grab our books and go and relax on the quiet beach with the sound of the waves lapping at the shore. Hotel Baga did a mean breakfast too (which was included in the price of our room) and it was such a treat to sit on the dock looking out across the sea, as we ate a selection of local cheese, honey, jam and traditional Turkish hot cheese pastry rolls (with some company from a litter of kittens!)
We had quite a quiet week as Akyaka is very small, and we were visiting at the end of the season. Whilst the weekend was busier, with the Turkish locals out and about taking boat trips and eating in restaurants, during the week there were just a handful of people (if that) in each of the restaurants. We had originally planned to do lots of hiking and walking in the spectacular hills surrounding Akyaka but unfortunately found ourselves tailed by three big stray dogs on our first hike (one of which was proudly carrying a cat skull in his mouth!) and got a bit put off! Instead we spent our days exploring the town itself and walking along the river where there were still lots of stray dogs, but thankfully didn’t bother paying us any attention!
As well as its large south coast beaches, Akyaka is also known for its fresh water river, which runs down from the mountains, through the town and into the sea. Everyday we’d walk round the bay, along the main beach, round the harbour and up the river, stopping at various restaurants, cafes and bars along the way. Very relaxing! We did a little river cruise one day which was really nice and a fun way to see more of the river (and the many ducks and geese which swum up and down it) and I absolutely adored the vibrant green coloured reeds which could be seen beneath the surface.
We also went on an island hopping boat trip (we loves us a boat trip!) which was again nice and relaxing. We got to see some more of the beautiful scenery of the surrounding islands, including the famous Cleopatra Island, where legend has it Anthony bought sand from the Red Sea specially for Cleopatra, and the two of them swam at the beach together.
We did another boat trip up the large Dalyan River which seemed to have gathered all the English tourists in the Marmaris area and put us all together on three “boom boom boats” that sailed in unison! Whilst the trip was a bit more crowded and tacky than we’d have liked, it was still nice to get out and about! We started sailing across a beautiful large lake which reminded me of scenery from New Zealand, and past some beautiful tombs as we travelled up the river. The area is famous for wildlife and we saw plenty of heron, king fishers, blue crabs and even a couple of huge sea turtles!