XII - Altanya Körfezi
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XI - Heading East once again.
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XIII - Altanya Körfezi II.
Log Entry Monday 26th August - We explore the shore and nearby hills.
As the sun breaks into the Limani, our morning begins as usual, coffee and breakfast on deck and of coarse the ducks to feed, they make their way around the boats, plant, our cacti also received their daily water.
This morning before the sun gets too hot we head ashore and look to see where this black mud comes from that the tourists cover themselves with on the beech. We know the "Captain" in the cafe gets fresh water from a well just behind the shore for the dish washing in the cafe, we have to cross a dried flood area, the ground is cracked with the heat but from the colour of the soil the area is quite fertile.
We walk directly to the south, just to see where the trail takes us, the trail cannot be man made as there is not enough traffic, perhaps goats of wild boars, we know the Captain feeds the pigs with waste food, he has no captive pigs? There is evidence of some animal digging in the soil perhaps for roots or similar?
The short path takes us high and over the other side we can see the entrance to Cauvas Limani, and way in the distance Taslik Burnu, around which Finike sits - the view very spectacular.
It is only a matter of time before the daily barrage of trip boats become visible.
We move around the ridge taking in the scenery, we brought water with us so we just relax and enjoy.
A trip boat enters the bay below us and the guests begin swimming, they then spend time looking for things to jump off, we watch the scale a rock towering out of the water.
In time, bored with that, some look for something higher?
As we sit and watch one of the guests from the trip boats in Çineviz Limani where we sit joins us, he is Swiss, we chat a little then the three of us head back toward our Limani. As he approaches the beach, a vessel is sounding his horn and waving, time to be off to the next bay?
We find the source of the pungent mud, it is the cracked black earth we had walked over, re-hid rated - we do not try it, the odour putting us off? We call in to refresh our self's in the cafe then return to Sailaway.
The boats come and go as they do every day, one caught my eye, with Turkish music blasting out, two guys dance on it's roof as they leave in tradition style.
Log Entry Saturday 24th August - We make for Olympus, but engine issues take us to Çineviz Limani.
We had another "rolly night" in the anchorage, so not much sleep for the second night in a row. So, we are up and on the way south to Olympus early. We head out and turn south through the channel between Üçadalar and the mainland. The shore area known as Tekirova is just a waterfront of hotels and resorts, the first thing to focus on for us is the large white complex that marks the end of it ahead!
We make the coastal trip with no wind so engine on it is, the morning breezes should develop soon, the excellant back drop peeping out of the mist is Mount Solymnus (Tahtali Dagi)
We turn wide of a small gathering of 4/5 fishing boats and then make our turn in land towards the shore to pass on the inside of the fish farms, a shorter route to Olympus.
As we do so, an odour catches my attention, a quick glance at the engine gauge confirms we are over heating? A further quick examination into the engine bay identifies steam? We shut down the engine and consider our position, there is almost no wind, and, with the fish farms closing on us fast we turn Sailaway out to deep water and safety to allow us to evaluate our true position. We hoist the canvas and point to the east, there is just enough wind to give a knot or so of positive movement into deep water, I check out the engine. One of the rubber "boots" distributing the coolant through the engine heat exchanger has split and deposited all of the coolant into the sump under the engine. The repair is now just a job to do, we have a spare boot and coolant - of coarse! As we pull away from the land the wind increases slightly, we are at this speed an hour away from Çineviz Limani, a known good, sheltered anchorage. Olympus is very open and has no shelter so we decide to complete the repairs en-route and make for Çineviz Limani, passing by Olympus today. We turn Sailaway back south for a new destination, we will now be able to complete the journey under sail as I make the repairs, once in the Limani we can check everything out to ensure the true completion of the repair.
That is just what happened, the repair was completed in due time as we sailed towards the Limani - it was hot work, 30C outside, and a hot engine in. I topped up the engine coolant with hot water to elevate any other issues, all went well as Ann kept watch.
We entered the anchorage, very busy this time, we had barely settled and the ducks were around us scrounging their lunch?
Log Entry Friday 23rd August - Ancient Phaselis, what a fascinating place.
I would imagine that it would be impractical to visit this region without dropping into Phaselis, such an outstanding example of Roman architecture, steeped in history leading back to the 7th Century? It should be said that all of the ruins on site are said to be of Roman origin, although with a little imagination your mind can run riot! The city/town was said to have been created by colonists from Rhodes in 690 BC, that in itself must have been quite a challenge against the local people? It's history is just as fickle, coming under the rule of Persians and taken under the wing of Alexandra the Great after his defeat of the Persians. After Alexandra's death it came under the rule of the Egyptians from 209 - 197 BC when, due to the Ampemaia Treaty it was handed over to the Kingdom of Rhodes. It was then taken by the Romans and remained with them for some time. This whole region was under constant threat from pirates and Phaselis was actually ruled by pirates for some time. Phaselians were always traders and seemed to prosper no matter what the odds, the city benefited from three natural harbours which were developed over time, now little is evident of the sea defences other than wall ruins in the south harbour. As the 3rd century AD approached the harbour had lost it's importance, and with the demise of Arab trading and increased activity of pirates by the 11th Century A.D. the city became almost derelict and abandoned.
We anchored Sailaway just outside the southern harbour the actual southern harbour itself is utilised heavily by trip boats so we take a more distant position. We are across early to avoid the heat of the day and ashore by 0900, we begin to tether/chain up our dinghy as we normally do but a gent introduces himself, he ferries the trip boat visitors backwards and forwards, he offers to take care of our dinghy and did a great job.
You walk straight off the beach into what was the main harbour street, an entrance fee of 8tl is requested by an official looking gent in a hut so he must be genuine? The initial entrance to Phaselis was through Hadrians Gate, you can actually see all the way through the ruins to the shores of the northern harbour.
The ruins are interesting, clear remains of water/sewerage channels still in place amongst the dwelling, you eventually reach a central square, the Amphitheatre placed high above the town.
There are two bath areas, one said to have included public toilets?
In the larger bath house carrying on northwards, the drainage still in place as is what was once the decorative bath floor, decayed by centuries of weather.
There are many mews and buildings lining this main street, it appears to have been a particular place of wealth during the period.
In the northern section is two harbours, a large outer naval base at one time and the older, inner harbour, all now a busy area for "beach people".
In land of Phaselis is now a swamp, but in past documents it was described as a lake, predominantly during the period 64 B.C. - 26 A.D. mentioned in Antiquity?
With the dominance of the Romans an aqueduct was built to supply fresh water to its residents from a stream to the north, a significant amount of both the aqueduct and distribution network visible today.
The ducks and geese were of so significance to Phalises history, we just like them, they clearly were looked after around the cafe area!
Walking back to the centre, steps take you up to the Amphitheatre and provide you with excellant views of the ruins below.
We end up back on the shores of the south harbour and our dinghy, now a lot busier than when we first arrived.
There was now about twenty day/tour boats, all of different sorts and themes to attract tourists, they spill over into the outer section in which we sit.
Log Entry Thursday 22nd August - There is no check out time of the marina, so we spend more time looking around.
We could leave the marina at any time, we were only moving to Phaselis less than eight miles south so we thought we would have a further look around. We walked to the peninsula, along side the marina and around Ayisigi Moonlight Bay, busy it was too.
On the peninsula was Yörük (Nomad) Park, we paid the 2tl entrance fee and took a look inside.
We had the place to ourselves, tent dwellings reconstructed in the way they would have been in traditional times.
It was interesting to see what their definition was of being nomadic, a lot of equipment, not easy to move around frequently?
The park had a cafe in which you could redeem your entrance fee, it was not open yet, they were just getting the wood ready for the stoves.
We came to the conclusion that it would be an interesting place to visit on an evening.
There was also a livestock area, I must admit we did agree they did not look too happy - perhaps too hot?
The kitchen are seemed a bit of a clutter, but interesting all the same?
We finished the tour of the folk park and went to search for the ancient ruins of "Idyros" to the south of "Ayisigi Park".
Ayisigi Park was just a garden of bars and restaurants lining the beach side area, all of different themes and standing.
Some were very impressive and had been put together at a significant cost, we made our way through the barrage of gents selling their wares. We came to where the ancient ruins should have been but found a fenced off area? We made enquiries around to be told that they were no longer there, the park had been extended and a hotel built. We had just received this information from the tourist office hours ago - they do work fast here?
We sat at one of the beach cafes and drank tea for a couple of hours, the winds were about right by the look of it, we in time returned to the marina and left for Phaselis, arriving there a couple of hours later.
We guessed that it may be a busy trip boat anchorage but as we arrived around 1800 hours the last three boats were leaving in fact apart from two local boats we were the only one there which always suits us. We settle down to a quiet evening in time we were joined by three other pleasure craft, we spent a rather "rolly" night at this anchorage, still better than in a marina!
Log Entry Wednesday 21st August - We quickly source a new engine battery and take a look around town.
The marina is a little "tired", there seems little interest in the berth holder. The marina is more of a commercial port for the gullet and trip boats, 30% plus of the pleasure craft appear to be in almost long term storage, well covered from the elements. It has the usual numerous bars and restaurants, not that we used them, very few others seemed to either? My plan to find a engine battery was to firstly enquire at the local chandlery then head off in a taxi somewhere to obtain a comparison. At the local chandlery I was surprised at the pricing, with a little discussion on pricing we came to an agreeable number and bought one directly as I felt by the time we had paid taxi fares to out of town areas, and the delay could force another nights fee in the marina it was false economy. This way we could source the battery, have it fully charged and still have a look around town before we had to leave.
The town is clean and reasonably modern, most tourists we felt were of Russian origin, the guy in the tourist information office explained why things were priced as such, inflated so, as they had the money to spend, unfortunate it was a little unfair on the local people, on that we had to agree.
The town was as any reasonable size town would be, we wandered out to the area in where the supermarkets were to stock up.
There was quite an impressive clock tower restaurant in the centre surround by a water feature park for recreation.
The park was very impressive.
Log Entry Tuesday 20th August - With failing engine batteries it takes two attempts to make Kemer Marina.
My attention over the last couple of days had been drawn to our electrical system, both our wind generator used to create electrical power from the wind and the engine starting battery. Yesterday I had managed to repair the damaged wind generator but could not get to the bottom of the starting issue, all evidence was pointing towards the need for a new battery. The day began as normal, we fed our ducks and watched the local fishermen working hard at catching the fish. After breakfast we had our daily task of starting and running the engine to recharge our domestic batteries after there work during the night maintaining the fridge temperatures, during July and August it is almost running constantly. The engine battery had just enough power to turn the engine over and start it, this confirmed our believe, that after just less than five years it had just given up. With Sailaway's engine running to recharge the domestic batteries I went over to one of the gullet skippers to enquire as to whether I would be able to source a replacement battery in Kemer, twenty miles to the north or a trip to Altanya would be needed - Kemer would be good enough we were told. The morning northerly winds were in full strength by now, almost 20 knots and the sea was already building. With the engine running we thought we would stick our nose out into open water and see whether we could make Kemer, or wait until the more favourable winds this afternoon and keep our fingers crossed we could get the engine restarted. We packed up and left the security of the bay and entered the two meter plus swell, out in open water our progress was no better, no more than a knot or so of progress, occasionally being brought to a complete stop by the larger waves. We turned around, back into the Limani and reset our anchor, we would wait for the more favourable conditions this afternoon.
By mid afternoon the wind had fallen and turned in our favour, the sea fell flat very quickly, much better conditions, the charge we had pushed into the batteries earlier plus the additional from our solar panels allowed us to easily restart the engine and make way towards Kemer. Once out in clean air there was no wind at all, we would motor all the way.
The coastline is very rugged, once it can be seen, high humidity and resulting mist spoils the scenery unfortunately as we followed the coastline north.
We passed the "Olympus anchorage" and the numerous fish farms scattered up this coast.
There was little to do other than chat, drink lots of water and glance occasionally at the engine instruments. An ambient temperature of mid-thirties is bad enough without all of the additional heat from the engine?
Some thing that did catch our interest was that there must have been a large fire somewhere, seaplanes dropped down to the water along side us a number of times, collecting sea water then taking off to deposit their cargo where it was greatly needed. Their routing could not be mad out, they just disappeared and reappeared into the mist?
As we got within ten miles of Kemer the coastline changed, from picturesque to a constant wall of hotels and beaches and all of the activities they require.
As "Koca Burnu" came out of the mist, the headland around which Kemer sits, the temperature down below decks was just over 40C as a result of the working engine.
The fire must have still be burning somewhere as we passed by a helicopter, collecting sea water as we had seen the planes do, and, disappearing into the mist heading west up the valleys.
With quite a procession of freight vessels running parallel to us, to and from Altanya, there was quite enough to keep your mind busy. Then, as we drew nearer to Koca Burnu the madness could be seen ahead, the constant stream of gullets, day trip boats and 15 - 20 paragliding sets up in the air at one time, and the hotel density increased significantly to the point of becoming just ugly?
One of the really smart paragliders shot out from the shore cutting across us, close to our bow, took his craft around us and turned to head back inshore. Both he and us watched intensely and hoped his cable would miss our mast - it did, but there was no real need for his stupidity. Once the cable was clear he shot back to shore full power to get the next poor soul? As we rounded the Burnu the caves, cut deep into the sandstone were full of small craft and jet skies - Marmaris, we thought to ourselves, just crazier?
We picked the safety of the marina as apposed to the anchorage as we did not know how long it would take to obtain a battery, having no engine would lead to other complications too, no fridge etc? I must say as we registered a cost of €30 per night was not too bad for this time of year, that included water and electric too! Well we believe it did as we were not asked any thing about our needs, so we hooked up on the assumption it was free? We had a good walk around town that night to try and find a source for a new battery we gave up eventually, a task for tomorrow?
We were surprised at the costs of thing here, fruit for example twice the cost of any where else. Every thing was priced, we were told "in $'s for the Russians, €'s for the Germans and tl for anyone else?