It’s that time of year, Christmas Eve, Eve, in fact! Where festive things are all around, twinkling lights, pretty trees, tinsel, enough food to feed the 5000, endless tubs of chocolates, and perhaps a poinsettia or two!
It’s the latter that I want to talk about – up until last year I had no idea that our festive red poinsettias have a link to Turkey, and not the kind that forms our Christmas dinner!
In Turkey these beautiful flowers are called ‘Ataturk Çiçeği’. I have read that they were Mustafa Kemal Atatürk’s (founding father of Turkey) favourite flower, and named in his honour as he encouraged the cultivation of them in the country – the beautiful red colour certainly matches well with the Turkish flag, doesn’t it? I have 3 poinsettias adorning my table at the moment, a deep pink one which was a gift from a friend, a glittering, sparkly red one, and the one in the middle which is almost completely green, and overgrowing, as it has been in my house since last Christmas! When I got it last year it was red and glittery like my new one, and reduced to £1.50 in Tesco, so a real bargain! It’s not red anymore, though I have that read sticking it in a dark place for 12 hours a day will make the leaves turn red again so maybe I will try that… I tried to jazz it up with some fake berries. I’m amazed I managed to keep it alive, I’m not very good with plants… I’m a big fan of Christmas and start getting excited about it half way through the year, so I joked that the only reason it was still alive is because it’s always Christmas in my heart… of course Berkay said no, it’s because Ataturk is always in his!
Anyone who has been following my blog for a while will know that my favourite thing to do in Turkey is watch a sunset, and there is no better place to do that than in Calis!
There’s just something special about sitting on the beach watching the sun slowly shrink and disappear, at the end of another day.
Cloudy sunsets are particularly impressive, but this was on a clear day back in June, although a bit hazy due to the heat. I stood on the sand in front of Jiva Beach hotel, pointed my camera and snapped photos as the sun disappeared behind the mountains and hills in the far distance, going from a full circle to a tiny red slither, leaving an orange glowing sky behind. I love the slow gradient from red to all shades of orange, so perfect, as if straight off of an artists paintbrush onto a canvas.
People were swimming in the sea admiring the sunset for themselves too, so there are a few heads bobbing around in my photos!
Apparently, watching the sunset can have actual benefits on our health and attitude. Not only does it get us outside in the fresh air, but it’s also inspiring and reminds us that we should be thankful for each day, for each morning the sun rises and each evening the sun sets. Watching a sunset can apparently also be a stress reliever, as we watch the sun disappear it can help us feel like the weight of the worries and stress of the day is lifted from our shoulders, we can put the troubles of the day behind us. The soft orange glow of the sky can help us see things in a new light, and notice the beauty in things that the harsh daylight can make us easily miss.
In the summer the sun sets towards the right hand side of the beach, so its partially blocked by the hill, but it still looks beautiful. In winter months however, the sun sets right on the horizon, right in the middle of the sea as you look at it from Calis Beach, I haven’t seen one of those kinds of sunsets for a few years, perhaps in October…
I can’t believe the whole month of August is over and this is the final day of the photo series! I’ve saved my best photo til last, it’s without a doubt my most favourite photo I’ve ever taken. I hope you don’t mind that I’ve shared it a million times before, I just LOVE it. This is Boncuk as a puppy, we’d had her 4 months and were just taking a late afternoon stroll one day in February, along Calis beach. I was trying to get some good sunset photos and she just sat down and posed – pure luck, it’s not easy getting a puppy to sit still! I love her little smiley face, tongue out, ears flapped over, sitting up straight. The sunset in the background, the waves rolling in and Boncuk’s little doggy paw prints in the sand. She was the cutest puppy!
I’ve enjoyed looking back over my old photos this past month and sharing them, showing you all the beauty of Turkey in it’s many forms! I think this photo sums up everything I love most about Turkey personally, Calis beach, sunsets, the sea and our beautiful Boncuk dog.
I hope you’ve enjoyed the photo posts too, thanks to everyone for liking, sharing and commenting over the last month!
You just can’t beat a Calis Beach sunset, especially during winter when the sun goes down right on the horizon rather than behind the mountains. The clouds make it even more dramatic, with the sky fading from yellow, to orange, then to red. The sun glowing, lighting up the horizon, with the silhouette of red island on the right. I love this photo especially because of the boat sailing across, can you spot it? Just think how magnificent the sunset would have looked from on board that, surrounded by the ocean!
When I took this photo I was annoyed because the camera kept loosing focus – but the more I looked at it the more I loved it. I think the blurry effect actually makes it look a lot better and it certainly stands out among the other thousands of Calis Beach sunset photos on my memory card! The island in the centre is Red Island/Kızılada and the sun was setting right behind it, but the perfectly-timed shot made it look like the sun was actually melting away the island!
Winter is the best time for beautiful sunsets here in Calis, the sun goes down right on the horizon over the sea rather than behind the mountains as it does in summer.
I hadn’t had a chance to watch the sunset for a few weeks, so last weekend while Berkay was working I took myself off to the beach just before sundown and sat alone armed with my camera. It was so peaceful, there was hardly anyone around apart from 2 people fishing, myself and a couple of roaming dogs.
I wasn’t disappointed by the sunset I witnessed, it was a little cloudy but as I always say, cloudy days make the best sunsets – the way the sun reflects off the clouds and turns the whole sky an orange-red is beautiful. A remarkable case of being in the right place at the right time meant this boat appeared to float right along the horizon as the sun set, creating an even more magical, peaceful scene. I think its one of the best sunset photos I have ever taken! It’s really strange to think that 5 months ago I’d go and sit and watch the sun go down around 8.45pm and now it sets at least 4 hours earlier than that – it’s a reminder of how quickly the time passes.
I posted these photos on my blog Facebook page last week, but realised that anyone who doesn’t have access to that will not have seen them so I decided to post them here too. Please don’t forget to go over and like my page so you don’t miss out, I post photo’s there almost daily. www.facebook.com/livingtheturkishdream
I am loving my new house being so close to the beach – having the freedom to walk the 2 minutes to the beach at any time is great.
Yesterday evening after Berkay had gone to work I decided to go on a stroll to the beach to watch the sunset. It was a fairly cloudy evening and the sunset always looks better through clouds, so off I went with my camera and ended up staying for 45 minutes and taking 147 snaps!!
I thought I’d share a few with you, to show just how beautiful Calis can be. I edit all my photos with instagram before uploading – like the ones above… but sometimes photos need no editing because they are beautiful enough on their own. The following have not been edited in the slightest and show the true beauty of the sunset, although to be honest, the photos don’t even do it justice. Sitting on the beach alone listening to the waves lapping on the shore and literally seeing the sun go down behind the mountains in front of your eyes isn’t something that is able to be fully captured by a photograph! Oh how lucky I am to live by the sea. ❤