The azure waters of the Mediterranean, the Aegean, and the Black Sea, as well as the Sea of Marmara, surround Turkey to the south, west and north.With over 8,333 kilometers of coastline along the four seas, Turkey is a treasure chest of coves, inlets, bays and beaches at which yachtsmen can choose a different and private anchorage each night.

The sailing paradise of Turkey is also home to the Blue Voyage. This idyllic cruise means sailing with the winds, into coves and over the seas and becoming one with nature. It is also an experience of the history of man from the perspective of the sea rather than from the land, a journey which carries you to the private beach of Cleopatra, the eternal fires of remains of ancient civilizations. For lovers of the active life, sailing in clear waters provides great opportunities for swimming, fishing, skiing, surfing and diving.Sailing in Turkey also allows you to experience a truly enriching cultural exchange with the hospitable and gracious people of the coastal villages and towns. The tempered winds which generally blow from the west and northwest make the long summers ideal for yachting, and seem to encourage an appreciation of nature. From some of the turquoise coast's unspoilt and sheltered bays you can see mountain peaks rising to almost 3,000 meters above sea level. In Turkey modern facilities and comfort have not overshadowed ancient hospitality and the slower pace of life. The pleasure of yachting in Turkey will tempt you to come back again and again, to explore yet another stretch of coast and to relive the luxurious ease of life on the sea.

Yachting remains a popular activity for residents as well as visitors to Turkey.Over the past 40 years the industry has grown, and today a large number of marinas dot the coastline between Istanbul and Antalya. These provide supplies, easy access to the shore at major resorts and safe harbors, as well as often becoming local entertainment venues in themselves. In Istanbul, yachtsmen will delight in splendid natural landscapes, open seas and magnificent sunsets, as well as a voyage through Byzantine and Ottoman history as they sail past the impressive castles, palaces and mosques. While navigating the breathtaking Bosphorus and sailing under the two enormous bridges which span Europe and Asia, meandering along the mosque-lined Golden Horn or cruising in the coves and bays of the Princes' Islands, you can always return to one of the two large marinas in the area. Both Atakoy Marina on the European side and Setur Kalamis. -Fenerbahce (Amiral Fahri Koruturk) Marina on the Asian side offer 24-hour service. From the North Sea through the European interior, yachtsmen can sail down the European channel system and the Rhine and Danube Rivers inio the B'a; k Sea harborsand to the istanbul Strait and Istanbul marinas-a safe and short way to get to the Turkish coasts. The Black Sea coast provides yachtsmen with a lush green coastal band where the environment is well-protected. There are coves and fishing harbors along this coast, and the weather is mild during the summer and winter. Turkey's most established marinas lie on the southern Aegean and Mediterranean coasts at Izmir, Ceşme, Kuşadasi, Bodrum, Ayvalik, Mersin, Datca, Bozburun, Marmaris, Gocek, Fethiye, Kalkan, Kaş, Finike, Kernel" and Antalya. In these well-equipped harbors, yachtsmen can find the services and provisions they require. Antalya, Bodrum, Dalaman, izmir and istanbul airports provide quick links to all of Turkey's marinas. After an easy flight you can board your yacht and sail off all within a day.

Gulettes: Enjoyment on Traditional Crafts
The singular design of Turkey's indigenous sea-going vessel, the gulette, blends practicality and tradition in a relaxed style that embodies the Blue Voyage.Over the years gulettes have evolved from traditional fishing and cargo vessels into their present profile of a broad beam and wide deck. Constructed mainly in the shipyards of Bodrum, Bozburun, Marmaris and Istanbul, and along the Black Sea Coast, the boats are equipped with motors as well as fully functional rigging. The number of passengers a gulette carries depends on the boat's size, although most of them accommodate between eight and twelve people. These vessels offer passengers separate accommodations, and chartering one includes services and entertainment. Modem gulettes are comfortably equipped with all of the amenities of home and encourage an environment in which you are expected to do nothing but enjoy yourself. The closeness of the entourage on board promotes an atmosphere of friendship and sharing; relations between passengers and crew tend to be relaxed and casual.Travel agencies can arrange charters and fixed tours for a specific group or for you individually. Unlike cruises on large ocean liners, on a gulette you can explore the secluded and often deserted bays and coves of the coastline. The small harbors and settlements offer an intimate view of coastal life which large ships simply cannot. In many ways a gulette is like a full-service hotel where every room has a sea view and the scenery changes constantly.

Bare-Boat Charter and Flotilla Cruises: What a way to rough it!
Bare-boat charter has recently been introduced as another form of yacht hire in Turkey.

Maintenance crews keep these yachts in optimum condition, but it is the passengers themselves who crew the boat. The charters are undertaken by representatives who are responsible for putting the passengers on board, looking after them and seeing that they return safely to port. Of course, an experienced skipper accompanies the vessel, but once on board the people who undertake the charter perform all of the tasks the handling of the sails, the seaman's chores, meal preparation and housekeeping. For those who want to escape all kitchen duties on their holiday, there is at least one restaurant at ever) anchorage, so eating out remains an option.

The more adventurous and experienced sailors can charter and pilot smaller (9- to 10-meter) motor yachts. Before setting sail, bare-boat companies generally brief their clients on the navigational characteristics of the environment, meteorological conditions, where and how to restock provisions, how to act in an emergency and any other pertinent information. Flotilla sailing, or sailing with a group of yachts led by one boat, is another great adventure on the sea. Although an experienced sailor skippers the lead boat, the navigation of each individual boat is left to its crew.
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