Turquoise waters, lush green vegetation and chatty cicadas… I would forgive you for mistaking such a scene for a tropical one.
Whilst I do feel like there is a large tropical shaped hole in my heart this year, I did get a slice of heaven on my recent visit to Sarigerme, Dalaman. Boasting a glistening coastline and rolling mountains as far as the eye can see, Turkey’s sunny district of Dalaman has definitely made a lasting impression on me.
I’d not been away with my Grandma for a couple of years, what with various trips with boyfriends and best friends! But with a ‘free’ year we decided to go for it, and instead of sticking to our usual spot in Skiathos (an utterly charming Greek Island which I am totally in love with and will no doubt go back to eventually) we set our sights further afield and closer to the equator.
Now, oddly Turkey is one of those place which we both had kind of avoided over the years. I’m not really sure why, but I have a vague recollection of people complaining about bad tummies and rude tourist. With this in mind we were hesitant but in the end took the plunge after reading an astonishing number of glowing reviews for the hotel and area we would be staying.
If you know me at all, you will know that I’m not a huge hotel person and would usually much rather travel around a bit to see the sights and get a flavour of local life. This is still true and my explorer mind has not left me yet; I just felt like it was time for a real break.
Don’t worry, I will provide a FULL lowdown on the hotel but I’m still harvesting my photos from the trip and trying not to leave any details out.
We did still set off with the intention of going for morning hikes and doing some yoga at sunset (okay, that last one was a very one sided venture) but when we landed at 3am in 28 degree heat we started to get the impression it was going to be way too hot for that kind of thing.
It was, and after one very sweaty walk to the local town, bizarrely named Istanbul Market (I say bizarrely as we were NOWHERE NEAR Istanbul???), we decided it was going to be a beach holiday after all. What followed was a week of pure relaxation, wonderful views and seriously scrumptious food.
Although 6 out of the 7 days were spent on a beach under the much needed sunshades, taking welcome dips in the warm ocean a few times a day and navigating the scorching sand (honestly, horrifyingly hot on the tootsies), we did take a boat trip to the local town, Dalyan.
The day started early with a short bus ride to the dock. Our group of 10 hopped on a sweet boat lined in colourful Turkish rugs. I would’ve loved to have brought one home with me.
With the sun peaking over the mountains, but only just, we followed the Dalyan river’s gentle meanders passed riverside restaurants, houses and fishing boats until a carved out structure appeared in the mountainside.
The Lycian Rock Tombs are breathtaking. There we sat in the middle of Dalyan river, listening to the soft hum of bugs, the sweet arrangement of birdsong and the distant chatter from the locals, surrounded by a maze of native reeds. We sat gazing up at tombs reportedly dating back to 200 BC; they are all remarkable examples of ancient civilisations skilled engineering and craftsmanship. Each tomb is intricately cut, some in the shape of temples, it really is a fascinating sight to behold.
Our day continued on with a lot of fun and laughter from the whole company, but I’ll save that for another time.
Lots of love,