Turkey Day 4… Statues, Ducks & Red skies at night..

I always say how fond I am of Fethiye town centre and even though I lived in Calis, 15minutes away, for 3 years, Fethiye centrum is absolutely my favourite place.

Whenever we were bored, or just wanted a walk and a drive, we headed off to Fethiye, found a parking space and wandered around. There is so much to see it never really bores me. Every town in Turkey has a statue of Ataturk (I only found this out recently) but Fethiye has a lot more than just one so you’re never very far away from a photo opportunity! This one is directly opposite Pizza Tomato and sits pride of place in the park, accompanied by a couple of lions, although I’m not sure what the reference is to those.
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While wandering around the harbour, we came across one of the famous simit sellers. Walking along with lots of those little sesame covered bagel-like breads balancing on a tray on their head is a real art form, and its funny to watch. A part of me watches in awe, and a very small mischievous part of me watches wishing they’d trip over and drop them all on the floor because it would be a perfect comedy moment.

After a quick doner for lunch, we headed off to the fish market – another of the places we always have to visit while we’re in Fethiye. I do like the fish market, but boy does it smell, not only of the obvious, but also of smoke, so much so it makes my eyes sting just walking around it. We bought some fish for dinner and ended up with way more than we intended – the sellers are very persuasive!
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On the drive back to Calis we stopped off at the Ördek Adası – duck island, opposite the devlet hospital. There were a lot of ducks around so we climbed over the fence (ignoring the signs…) and tried to feed them, but apparently these ducks don’t like bread as the whole area was full of bits of breads and the ducks just peacefully bobbed away ignoring it! It’s still nice to see the island so full of wildlife though.

It was a little too early for dinner when we arrived back in Calis so we decided to make the most of the sunshine and sit at a beachfront cafe playing backgammon and drinking tea. This is my favourite pastime, it’s so relaxing and even though I always lose, we always have a lot of laughs.
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Back at our apartment Berkay cooked dinner for us as usual.. another BBQ, our 2nd of the week! We had fish, jacket potatoes, aubergine salad and crusty bread, believe me when I say it tasted much better than it looks. While he was cooking it, the sun went down over Calis and it created the most beautiful reflection in the pool on our complex, I love that time of day and how pretty the skies always are with the glow of the sunset. The best thing about watching the sunset is knowing you have another whole day in Turkey to wake up to!
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Turkey Day 3 – Breakfast on a boat, Göcek and tavla.

The morning of my 3rd day in Turkey, and the final day in January, was spent on board a boat! I am going to write a more detailed post on this soon as we enjoyed it so much. We had booked the previous day and were hoping for good weather and how lucky we were, it turned out to be a really beautiful, sunny morning. We boarded the ‘Princes Serap’ boat at 10am, departed at 10.30am and enjoyed an amazing open buffet, unlimited breakfast, with plenty of Turkish tea to accompany it. There was everything you could think of that makes up a Turkish breakfast – boiled eggs, salami, sausage, olives, tomatoes, cucumber, lots of cheeses, cooked vegetables, potatoes, fruit, bread, simit, borek, sigara borek, jams, honey and other spreads. It was so delicious.

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Shortly after 10.30am the boat set sail towards Calis and floated along past the beach. It was weird to see Calis from that angle, we’d never been so close to it on a boat before as we usually do the 12 Island boat trips that go further out. We stayed out for around 2 hours, turning the engine off halfway through and stopping for more tea and coffee. It was really relaxing. I love boat trips in the summer months, but this was a totally different experience, all Turkish families just enjoying a family breakfast on their Sunday off, as opposed to a boat full of people in bikinis and sunbathing under the boiling sun.
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The boat arrived back at Fethiye harbour around 12.30pm and we made a spontaneous decision to drive to Göcek to visit the Sunday market there. I’d only been to Göcek once before, and that was on a boat trip, so we really didn’t know where to go or what to see. We found the market, bought me a pair of baggy village pants, then got an ice-cream, some doritos and a bottle of coke and sat on the beach having our mini picnic. We walked along the very quiet seafront for a while admiring some of the luxury yachts, and came across a pretty street with multi-coloured bird houses suspended above – similar to the popular multicoloured umbrellas in Fethiye, very simple and very effective, they definitely brighten everything up.
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On the way back from Göcek we stopped off at a viewing area where you can see the sea and across to several islands – these islands usually make up the backdrop of my sunset photos from Calis so it’s funny seeing them from a different angle! My photos don’t really do it justice – it’s a great spot to just stop and admire the view.
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After going back to our apartment for dinner, we headed out in the evening to a restaurant/bar along the promenade in Fethiye that we’d never been to before – Matisse. I fell in love with this place instantly, and we ended up going back there most evenings. There was a great atmosphere about the place and it was always packed full to the brim – sometimes we even had to wait for  table to become free. It was full of young men and women sitting playing tavla (backgammon) and drinking tea, beer etc, while smoking the traditional Turkish water pipe / Nargile. There were tables inside and out, and little sofas. Some of the outside tables were under a plastic covering which meant all the smoke lingered around which I’m not a fan of, so we preferred the sofa tables that were uncovered – they also had little bonfires going to keep us warm which were definitely needed back in January! While the bars/restaurants either side of this one were empty, the staff at Matisse were rushed off their feet and the tables all full. With the added bonus of free wifi and live music, we could have quite happily sat there for hours drinking cay and playing tavla – definitely my new favourite place to go in the evening.
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