22 October 2013

June 14: Dalyan and loggerhead sea turtles.

Our gulets motor to Gocek by 9 a.m., where we disembark and board our bus.

Gocek

Our bus takes us to Dalyan, a town less than an hour north of Gocek. Along the way, I noted that the buildings in the town are architecturally pleasing, more European; they are less blocky than most of Turkey’s structures. Ali says that a lot of Brits live in this area as it has a great climate and is a relatively inexpensive place to retire.

Dalyan is famous for the endangered loggerhead turtles that breed on a nearby beach. In June 1988, the area was declared a protected natural preserve, the first in Turkey. (See Koycegiz-Dalyan Special Environmental Protection Area.) We will be on the Dalyan River, that connects Lake Koycegiz with the Aegean Sea through a delta-like matrix of channels.

We walk through the town to the pier where we board an open boat and head out the channels to see the loggerheads.

First we pass a statue of Ataturk, a common sight in Turkey.

statue of Ataturk

This photo looks back on the pier and the town of Dalyan.

Dalyan

The river winds through a marshy, reedy delta.

Dalyan

Soon we see Lycian rock tombs carved into the hills that rise from the shore.

Dalyan

Zoom in:

Dalyan

The view as we motor out towards the sea. We stop to get blue crab to attract the loggerhead turtles. Ali gets extra to take to the restaurant later in the day.

Dalyan

What are these people pointing to? A loggerhead - you can barely see it.

loggerhead

Our boat moves in closer and fish and crabs are tossed overside. Oh! Here comes a loggerhead turtle!

loggerhead

And even better:

loggerhead

Underwater, with little fish swimming above.

loggerhead

I took a movie:



In the distance, you can see a loggerhead and the beach where the turtles breed.

loggerhead

Our boat turns back to town and we sit and talk about our experience.

Dalyan

Back at the pier, we disembark and gather together before we walk back to the town.

Dalyan

It’s pretty in this resort town. Restaurants line the walkway, inviting us in.

Dalyan

Dalyan

Ali takes us to a planned restaurant, where we order a variety of dishes and also the chef prepares the blue crab that Ali has brought. We enjoy the food and the wifi access. Later we wander the shops of the town and I get some harem pants and a cute shirt.

Then, back to the bus and then the gulet. The day is still young!

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