Turkey Yacht Charter Guide
Turkey Yacht Charter and Sailing Holiday Guide
Turkey offers all of the best of the Mediterranean to the charterer - history/ruins, excellent cuisine, peaceful anchorages, numerous glorious islands to explore, sparkling clear blue water and a mild climate perfect for yachting.
Most Turkish charters start from the Southwestern port towns of Bodrum, Marmaris, Gocek or Fethiye, although you can also cruise the magnificent Bosphorus near Istanbul, the Black Sea as well.
The Turkish yachting industry has grown and developed enormously over the past 40 years, most notably in the area of Gulet Chartering, also termed Blue Cruises (see accompanying article on Chartering a Gulet in Turkey). Gulets offer a crewed charter experience on classic, but comfortable wooden yachts, with great cuisine, friendly crew and itnineraries to please everyone.
Chartering in Turkey is not limited to Blue Cruises, however. There are plenty of great charter yachts of all types and sizes - bareboat, crewed, motor, sail and catamaran. We've outlined several types of chartering in the paragraphs below.
Marinas. There are plenty of well equipped marinas dotting the coastline between Istanbul and Antalya, providing necessary supplies, convenient access to safe harbours, and exciting destinations unto themselves.
Turkey’s most established marinas lie on the southern coasts at Antalya, Kas, Finike, Kemer, Fethiya, Gocek, Kalkan, Marmaris, Bozburun, Datca, Mersin, Izmir and Bodrum, to name a few.
These wide-decked sailing vessels have evolved over the years from being traditionally used just for fishing and cargo, to being comfortably equipped with all the amenities of home for a fabulous holiday for groups of people at sea. On a gulet you can enjoy secluded bays and coves at your leisure, while being served delicious, well prepared local food and drinks. Your crew will take you ashore to see landmarks and ruins, as well as remote, charming towns with excellent seaside restaurants (or perhaps some night life, if you so desire).
Gulet charters are a very popular holiday with Boatbookings.com clients – as well as being as fun and as relaxing as you wish, they also offer exceptional value, whatever your budget!
Bareboating offers the same itineraries and pleasures of a Gulet charter, but with the added freedom of having your boat entirely to yourself. If you want, you can also hire an experienced skipper to help you sail and plot your course.
Flotilla sailing is sailing with two or more yachts or gulets usually led by an experienced skipper on one of the boats. Flotilla sailing is great for large groups who may have varying needs - the boats can sail together or separate for a while if one part of the group wants to see ancient ruins while the other is more interested in sunning and relaxing, for instance.
If you prefer a pampered charter aboard a more modern yacht, there are crewed motor yachts to meet any needs. More and more luxury yachts are now available in Turkish waters, and charters often combine a several of the nearby Greek islands for a complete Aegean experience.
Bodrum is the center of the Turkish Gulet and Blue Cruise area, a very popular starting place for sailing charters in the Aegean Sea. It was called Halicarnassus in Ancient Greek times, and was the site of the Mausoleum of Mausolus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World (which unfortunately was destroyed by the Crusaders to build Bodrum Castle).
Bodrum has a large, protected harbour, overlooked by Bodrum Castle, which houses a fascinating museum of its incredible history. The harbour is generally full of a stunning array of Gulets and sailboats and offers plenty of restaurants and seaside cafes. Bodrum is easily reached from Istanbul and many other European cities, as it has an international airport 20 minutes inland.
Set against a backdrop of pine-clad hills, Marmaris is a popular port that combines natural beauty with excellent entertainment and night life.
This charming fishing town offers a lively stretch of bars and restaurants along the waterfront; while the adjacent unspoiled countryside offers scenic roads and quaint villages, ancient ruins and gorgeous beaches.
Gocek has long been a popular destination for both Turkish and foreign yachties, as well as a favorite port of call for international celebrities and jet-setters. The village is only 20 minutes by car from Dalaman International Airport, which can be reached in 1 hour from Istanbul.
It is not just world-class yachting that makes Göcek a special place; it is also due to the way the local culture and spectacular natural surroundings provide such a stunning and serene backdrop. Göcek is the gateway to the numerous beautiful, unspoiled islands in the Gulf where yacht charterers can explore some of the regions most magical beaches.
Antalya is Turkey's principal holiday resort in the Mediterranean region and is known as the `Turkish Riviera` due to its gorgeous setting, as well as countless historic, archaeological and natural attractions.
Antalya is the place where glistening sea, blazing sun, rich history and abundant nature come together in perfect harmony; moreover it boasts the most dazzlingly clear waters along its Mediterranean coastline, making it an appealing destination for anyone wanting to experience the best of Turkey during their “blue cruise”.
The surrounding province features a shoreline of 657 km with beaches, ports, and ancient cities scattered throughout, including the World Heritage Site Xanthos.
The airports of Dalaman, Bodrum, Antalya, Izmir and Istanbul provide easy and quick links to all of Turkey’s marinas. You’ll be out of the airport, transferred to your marina, boarding your gulet or yacht, and be off out to sea, all within a day!
The Aegean region of Turkey has an ideal climate for chartering. During the summer, you generally can expect non-stop sunshine, with only occasional squalls from the Mediterranean. Temperatures are warm, but the humidity not overwhelming.
Sea temperatures during the summer are in the mid twenties centigrade, perfect for swimming and watersports.
If you like fresh Mediterranean ingredients - olives, eggplant/aubergine, peppers, tomatoes - you'll love turkish food. We particularly love the mezes - starters of incredible variety that can be found in virtually every restaurant and are bursting with fresh local flavor. Don't have just one, order several and share them for a full appreciation of Turkish cooking.
On your charter, you're sure to have plenty of exellent seafood, usually caught that day and prepared perfectly. You will not find heavy sauces, the ingredients speak for themselves and generally only require a squirt of lemon.
As for desserts, sweets have always been part of Turkish culture, and the world-famous baklava, and kadayif (shredded pastry baked in syrup), are just two of the delicacies you will come to love!
Boatbookings will work with you to understand your needs and match them to the perfect yacht. We can find you virtually any yacht in Turkey and surrounding waters for your holiday or business event.