More cute villages and a gorgeous harbour town
01.04.2010 - 02.04.2010 22 °C
After saying goodbye to rustic Herakleia, we set off for Fethiye, a popular coastal stop. Thanks to Lisa's organisation (how nice to hand the reins over to someone else for a change) stopped at the small villages of Mugla and Eski Datça, staying in Datça overnight.
We stopped at what we thought was the centre of the town (our guidebook had us looking for hills to drive up, but we found none) and left our Turkeymobile in a carpark. We found the local fruit and vegetable market, housed in a large, open, corrugated iron structure. Again, the brightly-coloured produce on offer had our mouths watering. There was an adjacent fish market, where the workers happily insisted on posing in our photos and asked us to send us copies. Our tummies rumbled so we stopped at a local eatery for lunch, perusing the simmering vats of eggplant, liver, chicken and vegetables. Team that with rice and we had a very satisfying, hearty lunch, accompanied with obligatory fresh bread.
Back on the road, we had a fair bit of driving ahead of us, along the Reşadiye Penninsula, through Marmaris, and we arrived in the tiny, narrow-streeted village of Eski Datça by 7pm. Unfortunately, pretty much the entire village was closed for winter, so we drove to bigger, nearby Datça. Again we encounted a very quiet, closed-for-winter seaside town and we only found one accomodation option open. The town was typical of seaside towns popular on the tourist trail - it was small on charm and big on relying on water to provide its atmosphere. Many of the hotels weren't very However we were very pleased to see it had a kitchen (a home-cooked meal for once!). We scoured the shops that were open for dinner (a big vegetable stir-fry, vitamin and fibre goodness!) and Jac and Lisa settled into a bottle of cheap Turkish red, and Chalky kept pace with Efes.
The next morning we bade farewell to sleeping Datça and poked our nose around cobbled Eski Datça. We tried to find the Mayor's Residence, which was supposed to be quite a nice house, but failed in our attempt, then asked a local only to discover it was closed as a closed thing. It was a nice walk around the small village, peering into the windows of the stone buildings, and people's spring gardens. We found a jewellery shop which had an affectionate stray cat hanging outside, and Lisa found a beautiful turquoise and silver ring. Up the road a bit we stopped at the 'Olive Farm' for some tapenade and olives then hopped back into our trusty steed to drive the length of the penninsula again.
We pulled into Köyceğiz, a small, lakeside town for lunch, and arrived in Fethiye by 4pm. We drove around some of the pensions and poked our heads in, but they looked pretty basic and tiny. One pension's owner, a friendly man, said he saw us in a neighbouring place and with a smile on his face warned us there were 'bad women' there. We looked imploringly at this, and he went on to elaborate that it was a brothel! A dishonest attempt to sway our choice or a genuine description? Either way, we headed away to check out other places. A few bucks more and we found a really nice harbourside hotel and settled in. The owner, Hussein "Call me Sean Connery", made sure we had drinks strong enough to pull faces at, and we had a relaxing (well, merry) time sitting in the sun by the water. We met Bill, and English guy, who was meeting his teenage daughter who was apparently spending his money touring around Turkey.
That evening we all hopped on a dolmuş into the town, to the fish market for dinner. It was a unique set-up - a square of fishmongers hawking their catch in the centre, with restaurants surrounding the square, who would cook your fish any way you wished for only 5 lira. We all bought different fish and negotiated freebies with the restaurants. Delicious! Even Jac's fish which was apparently 'unique to the area' but just tasted like seabass, which as we all know could be anything! We washed our fish dinner down with several bottles of white wine, then attempted to windily amble/stumble home.
Lisa at Mugla's produce market
Husband and wife fruit stall owners
Tasty local lunch
Quaint Eski Datça
Lisa buying jewellery and making friends
'They say I look like Sean Connery': the hotel owner
At the Fish Market
Hmmm, what to have for dinner?
Jac, Lisa and Bill
Delicious dinner all for TL5 each
Jac, Lisa and our waiter... check out the styling!