Thursday, June 14, 2012

This week, in Istanbul, "Her gün nemli, sıcak." (Every day is hot, humid.)

As soon as I step outside after showering, I'm sweating.

At the end of the day, my flip-flop feet are blackened from the dusty city streets so I take another shower at night.

How I long to be at a beach or swimming pool! All our friends are talking about their summer vacations here in Turkey. We don't have any beach trips planned - yet!

Soon, a good friend is going to spend a relaxing weekend in the Çeşme and Alaçatı area, which reminded me of our fun weekend there last summer. I never really posted any photos from that trip, so I thought I'd share some now.

We loved staying at the  Alaçatı Zeytin Konak Otel. This small boutique hotel is the perfect place to use as a base to explore the Çeşme Peninsula.
Alaçatı Zeytin Konak Otel's swimming pool at night.
I could stay at this hotel in  Alaçatı  just for it's bountiful Turkish breakfast spread and for the local "puffy" bread.
Although the hotel has two swimming pools, we spent more time on the beach. The only problem is that many of the area's beaches are set up as beach clubs so you pay 20 to 30 tl per person to lay out on the beach.

However, my favorite beach we returned to again is Ilica Beach & Cafe, located near Sheraton Hotel's private beach in Çeşme. Two chairs with an umbrella cost only 24 tl! We had packed our own Turkish towels, raided a nearby bakkal and brought our own beers to the beach.
This beach does get crowded, but the chairs are cheap and the Aegean Sea is crystal clear and warm. The four of us took turns swimming so someone was always watching our belongings.
Note: bury your beer in the cold sand. It gets hot quickly and warm Efes is not good!

And when you get hungry, I highly recommend grabbing a kumru, a local sandwich stuffed with Turkish sausage, melted cheese and tomatoes, served hot from one of the beach vendors. I love cheese!
Enjoying a Turkish kumru sandwich at the Ilica Beach & Cafe.
One sandwich is like 2,000 calories, but washed down with a cold beer on the beach, it's exactly what you need! (In fact, I'd like to find this sandwich here after a night out on Istiklal Cad.)

Hopefully, we'll get out of the sweltering city in a few weeks. 

Where is your favorite beach in Turkey?

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Julia said...

Wow, that is one busy beach! I'm sure you'll be off on a beach break some time soon. Us - well we're spoilt for choice in these parts. ;)

Anonymous said...

Patara beach is pretty hard to beat, so vast and so empty.

Karen said...

I haven't been to the Turkish beach yet. Can't wait!

Tina Maxima said...

Wow,such a beeutiful place...

Joy said...

@Julia, yes I'm a bit jealous of you two right now! Lots of options nearby. I might even settle for a jaunt to Buyukada during the week just to cool down.

@omentide, Patara is not one I know, but will keep it mind for future trips! :-)

@Karen, you must go when you get back! Olu Deniz is probably one of my favorite places down by Fethiye so far.

jaz@octoberfarm said...

sounds the same as summer here. the heat from the asphalt jungle (the city) right below me rises and there is intense humidity from the rivers. when you walk out the door you feel like you have a wet warm towel on you. just one of the reasons i hate summer! of course, if i could have one of those sandwiches it would make things better!

BacktoBodrum said...

I love MAZI, it's on the Gulf of Gokova, about 20 minutes drive from Mumcular. It's stony and narrow but the sea is brilliantly clear and the restaurants haven't changed much in 30 years. When Bodrum seems too sophisticated, I head back in time to MAZİ

Lola Lobato said...

Joy, thank you for those great tips.
I was in Kusadasi for a day a month ago in the Aegean coast a total beauty.
Best regards. xoxo

Joy said...

@Joyce, Summer is not fun, but I grew up in the Midwest and summers in NYC aren't any better either! I did just find kumru shop not too far from my apartment so I can't wait to try it soon! ;-)

@BacktoBodrum, Is that near Guvercinlik? We stopped there on our way back to the Mugla airport for dinner. Super quaint area!

@Lola, Kusadasi is nice, but it's gotten taken over by sooo many tourists. However, it's a good place to use as a base to explore nearby Ephesus and Samos.

Unknown said...

That was so much fun last summer. When I saw the shot of the food. I started to laugh thinking about how all the cats came from no where. It was a fantastic time with great friends. Wish we could come and visit Turkey again.

BacktoBodrum said...

Mazı ıs on a dıfferent coast. At Guvercınlık turn inland to Mumcular (about 10 minutes. At Mumcular turn right and take a left, sign posted to Mazi. ( 19 km) . That's why it's still unspoilt. If you're ever in this area, look me up.

Anonymous said...

What month were you in Cesme?

Joy said...

@BacktoBodrum, thanks for the tip! We'll see how the summer goes and where our travels take us. Next road trip is to Gaziantep area at the end of this month. It's going to be hot, hot, hot.

@Anonymous, we've been to Cesme twice now. Last year, we went in July and the previous year we went in August. Plenty of sunshine!

Deniz Bevan said...

That kumru and Efes is making me sooooo jealous right now.

Kalkan Villas said...

For sure, it's a great destination. A relaxing atmosphere, tasty food and astonishing coastal views!

Joy said...

@Deniz, the kumru is so melting-ly delicious!

@Kalkan Villas, if only it were summer right now!