This is our second winter spent in Yacht Marine, Marmaris and this year we hope to do a bit more traveling into the surrounding area.
Marmaris Yacht Marina
In the lead up to Christmas the French community through down the gauntlet for an International Boules Competition. This was duly taken up and a very pleasant Sunday afternoon was spent in the sunshine with everyone bringing a pot-luck dish and something to drink. Gabby (the lady in the the funny hat) made a large pot of Gluevine (German version of Mulled Wine) which went down very well. The competition was run on a knockout basis resulting in a win for the Dutch.
One of the British competitors in action and the French in action
Christmas is a very enjoyable time. Although Turkey is a Muslim country Christmas decorations are readily available in the shops and a number of restaurants put on a Christmas menu.The really enjoyable thing is the absence of 'hard sell' no pressure from the TV to buy the latest widget that no family should be without, only a social time for friends and family's getting together and enjoying a meal and a drink together.
We joined a group of friends and had a lovely time at the Greenhouse Beach Restaurant only a few miles from the marina.
Christmas Dinner with friends
New Years Eve was spent at a party in the Yacht Marine restaurant with dinner and dancing. At twelve o'clock we all toasted in the New Year with Champagne, the toast being 'Fair winds and happy cruising for the 2009 cruising season'.
Well the year didn't start off too well, we had a very bad storm in January which could have caused a lot of damage to the boats in the marina. But thanks to the excellent staff and facilities the marina and boats suffered only minor damage. You can view a short video taken at the height of the storm by one of the live-aboards by clicking here.
We had hired a car for three months mainly for the convenience of shopping and getting the bits and pieces needed for our winter refit of Alba Voyager. But in February we took to the hills, literally and went to visit friends who live in a small village called Uzumlu. One of the highlights of our visit was breakfast above the snowline at a remote restaurant which offers no menu, you simply turn up and are then plied with a number of dishes.
View from the restaurant window Note the 'Pot Belly Stove' the only source of heating
L to R Pam, Helen, Anne and Yours Truly
February also saw us making a return trip to Istanbul, we had been there last winter and felt this time we could build on the knowledge gained and see more of the sites. Istanbul is similar to your London, Rome or Paris there's plenty to see and do, it's up to you what you want to take in. I'm not going to try and cover all we visited on this trip (there's plenty of information available on the web for those of you who are interested) but I have put together a small photo album to whet your appetite. They say a picture can paint a thousand words, let's hope you enjoy what you see.
Istanbul Photo Album click here
During the winter months mostly at weekends (although cruisers don't have weekends ... every day is the same) we have special events held in the bar or restaurant. Here is a sample of some of the things we get up to!
St Patrick's Night
St Patrick's night, music, song and dance with the odd leprechaun thrown in. This was held in the marina bar, dress was optional but most folks made the effort and at least found something green in their wardrobe.
Sing Along Evening
A musical evening of song from the many different countries represented within the winter live-aboard community. Again held in the marina bar, the evening was organised by a number of the live-aboard musicians, song sheets were printed and everybody at least got involved in singing the chorus.
St Valentine's Night
This pair turned up on St Valentine's Night. We were all enjoying a lovely romantic dinner in the marina restaurant. After which we would dance the night away and into the wee small hours to the sounds of a local DJ. However in the words of Robert Burns "the best-laid schemes o' mice an' men gang aft agley" In other words this pair showed up and all hell broke loose. But it was still a great evening!
On Easter Friday a walk into the hills above the marina was organised. Everybody was to bring a picnic and we would have this on the top of one of the hills looking out over the Mediterranean. As you can see from the photographs the weather was sunny and warm and we all had a great time. The terrain and scenery is very similar to Scotland but the sun is what makes all the difference.
View from the path looking back to the marina Picnic on the top looking out over the Mediterranean
On the way back down we visited some caves
Easter Monday, it was back into the hills but this time by bus, we were heading to a lovely restaurant at village called Chiner.
The restaurant is in a beautiful setting, the majority of the tables are set out in the grounds which is mainly forrest. Considering there were 150 people in our party alone, it did not feel over crowded. The food was Turkish cuisine and great, and the service first class. We all had a really fabulous time.
Tables set out in the grounds
One of the kitchens food was served from and All the food was fresh
All good things must come to an end! And to mark the end of our winter in Yacht Marine the management lay on a 'Start of Summer Party'. We treat this as a gala evening getting dressed up in our finery, such as it is when living aboard a yacht. The event is held in the marina restaurant, dinner is a splendid buffet of traditional Turkish dishes and this is followed by entertainment from a Turkish Folk Group. We round off the evening dancing to music from a local DJ.
Start of Summer Party in the marina restaurant The excellent Turkish buffet
Turkish Folk Group entertaining us
Well this is just a snapshot of winter life here in Yacht Marine. We have enjoyed our second winter here and are now looking forward to our 2009 summer cruise. We intend traveling south and east from Marmaris along the coast as far as time and winds will take us. We hope you have enjoyed reading our log and look forward to you joining us for our 2009 log.
Tom and Anne