ROADTRIP to Marmaris and back

12 February 2021 – ROADTRIP to Marmaris and back

We just returned from another road trip with Pam and Eric from Pied-a-Mer. This time, we went all the way NW to Marmaris, passing through – and checking out the marinas at Finike, Kas, Fethiye, and Marmaris. Our interest was three-fold, exploring further East away from our usual neighbourhood, visiting cruiser friends in Turkey, and scoping out other marinas. Altogether, it was nearly 600km, mostly by the coastline, although we took the mountain road on the way back.

We stopped overnight at Finike, to see our friends Steve and Liz on SV LIBERTE. We first met Steve and Liz when In Trinidad in 2012, and many times in between.

Finike Marina is one of the smaller, cozy marinas in the Setur Group with a large live-aboard / expat community. It is set in the agricultural city of Finike. Both the marina and town are warm and inviting.

The next morning, we drove through the town of Kas, a beautiful village set on a hillside.

This whole coastline is just so picturesque. The marina at Kas is definitely “up market”, and nearly full with very glossy boats. Even from the highway, the views along this coastline are stunning.

The last stop was at Marmaris, where we met up with George Greenberg (of SV RIO) who we met last year as he was passing through the Red Sea. George’s RIO is currently berthed at Marmaris Yacht Marina. I actually inquired about a berth at Netsel Marina, but they are completely full, and very expensive (more than double our cost at Alanya Marina). The great thing about Marmaris is that it has a lot of shops and services for yachts, more than we have seen in a long time. Sadly, we feel that this area is just too glossy, too glitzy and too expensive for us “cruiser trash”.

Here, we are having a cheeseburger “on the street” COVID-19 style (take out food only). Our trip did not violate any of the current COVID-19 restrictions in Turkey. Masks and social distancing are becoming the norm here. Although it is perfectly acceptable to remove your mask when eating!

The next morning, we headed back on the road and took the mountain route for a change in scenery. At one point, Diane checked the “compass app” on her iPhone 6SE and saw an elevation of 1400m and rising. There was snow in the distance, but getting closer by the minute.

It was definitely the coldest we have been in years. We were very close to the snow line at 1030am, and we were still in the shade.

On the way back down through the mountains, heading to Antalya, the surrounding clouds and valleys were beautiful. We noticed many of the same greenhouses that are in the Alanya area but they were NOT growing bananas, and the plastic was OFF the greenhouse roofs, probably because of the danger of winter snow loads.

A few weeks ago, we bought and tried out some kumquats (in the market) – for the first time. A kumquat isn’t much bigger than a grape, yet this bite-sized fruit fills your mouth with a big burst of sweet-tart citrus flavour. In Chinese, kumquat means “golden orange”. In contrast with other citrus fruits, the peel of the kumquat is sweet and edible, while the juicy flesh is tart. Diane used them with papaya to make some chutney, that we eat with our spicy dishes. In this photo, the kumquats have a white circle around them.

I figure that no boat blog is complete without evidence of some maintenance work. So here is a photo of the toilet diaphragm pump in our aft head (toilet). It was stuck for a day, so I had to take it apart and over-haul it.

This maintenance work (done about every two years, only when I HAVE to) involves taking the pump apart, cleaning it with various cleaners and chemicals, replacing the rubber bits and then putting it back together – and hoping it makes a seal. Amongst all the other things you might expect to find in a toilet pump, the parts are usually encrusted in crystals that are formed by the combination of urine and sea water. This stuff has to be thoroughly cleaned out. Its much easier, but more expensive, just to replace the rubber flapper and the two valves.