Here are some photos of what I got to see of Turkey’s south western mediterranean coast.
We picked up a boat in Marmaris and wound our way around the craggy coast of the Bozburen Peninsula to Palamat on the Daçta Peninsula. Some of the secluded bays we anchored in were accessible only by boat and populated with one building, which was usually a restaurant. The owners would greet us by row-boat as we entered their harbor and help us moore or anchor; then they would ask us what time we would like to reserve for supper. Our routine was to arrive in the afternoon and alternate between swimming and sipping wine on deck until dark. We would then head in to shore for dinner. Our meals consisted of mezze and if you ate fish or meat, then the catch of the day too, which was sometimes wild goat. The mezze gave me plenty of choice: mashed fava beans, purslane in thick yogurt, marinated beets, stewed eggplant and tomato, sea beans and antep ezme which became a favorite on the sandwiches we made for lunch. It’s like tomato salsa but paste-like made with a special pepper called aci pul biber.
The Daçta Peninsula is know for olive oil and almonds. We arrived near the tip in a place called Palamut. There I had two of my favorite meals since being at sea; both were in a restaurant called le jardin de Semra. Semra, the owner, grew up in the proud stone building that the resturant surrounds. She cooks from her organic garden out the back, is passionate about food and a warm host. After a late dinner we wandered the main street, which was lined with people shelling almonds and selling bay leaves, honey and wild oregano. The next morning back at le jardin de Semra I had my first real Turkish breakfast, which we ate under a big old mulberry tree. Semra laid out crisp cucumbers, tomatoes and olives along with homemade quince and peach jams, and freshly baked bread with sesame and cinnamon on one of the long tables.
Bozukkale has three resturants, wild donkeys and goats everywhere, and an archeologist living in a tent out the back of the restaurant we choose to eat at on our last night at sea.
The hills surrounding the bay are covered with ancient cemetaries and littered with pieces of pottery dating back to 395 B.C. This place is a hidden treasure, with no land access, you feel like it has never changed, but there are many facinating layers to it’s rich history and so much to learn.