Sometimes we come across things in life that words really can’t describe. Kaş is one of them. So please bear with me, my thoughts, my photos . . .
As you know, my husband and I spent 3 days there a couple of years ago. It was fabulous. And there was just no way that we could take it all in during the extended weekend. So this year we set out on another Kaş adventure.
In future posts, will go back and tell you about the road trip, the apartment, and the town. But today I want to share our real first day of adventure there, a boat trip guided by Xanthos Travel.
We signed up for a day trip to the sunken city of Kekova. It was really much more enjoyable than I expected. Yes, I expected, history, ancient ruins, sun, and fun. But somehow, they all seemed so much more exaggerated.
We met at the office at 10 a.m. where we met one of the tour guides, Ümral. Once all was in order, she lead us to the Kaş marina where we boarded a bus. It was a 45 minute drive to the boat. In between, we enjoyed the views of green valleys between the rocky hillsides, with tall mountains in the background.
By the time we arrived at the docks, another bus load of eager tourists had joined us. There were actually two boats as well. We opted for the second boat, not knowing that the entire tour would be in Turkish. But somehow, I enjoyed that. I was “one of the Turks” for this trip – the foreigners taking the other boat.
Shortly after boarding the boat, we were served tea on the top deck. I wish I had a photo. If you have ever been on a small tour boat or a ferry boat, you know there are usually seats or benches on the top deck. This boat had benches along the sides, but in the middle of the floor were long blue cushions with built-in headrests. There were enough for each of us to lay out, either in the sun or under cover. And that’s what we did.
Our boat had a young tour guide, Can (pronounced Jon). He immediately introduced himself to the crowd and began telling us – in Turkish – what we would see on this trip. Can was very observant as well; it didn’t take him long to realize that I didn’t understand. Instead of boring everyone with the English translation, he visited me after each of his speeches and gave the English version. It was like having my own personal guide. He also followed each of these sessions by asking if I had any questions. Can didn’t just ask, he waited, to be sure I had no questions.
Along the way, we stopped to visit the village of Simena, also known as Kaleköy, the castle village. There we enjoyed homemade ice cream. We traversed the village, buying trinkets from the locals. We did not hike to the top of the hills this time to visit the castle. (If you decide to do that, there is an entrance fee or bring your Museum Card.)
The boat stopped several times to show us the sites and to allow time for swimming and snorkeling. A lovely lunch was served on the boat: chicken shish kebab, rice, potatoes, salad, and a variety of vegetable dishes. Later in the afternoon, we were served tea and cookies.
It really was a lovely and enjoyable day. Who wouldn’t like a history lesson mixed with fun in the sun? Can was full of information and he definitely knew his history of the area. I finally had to tell him that there was no way I would remember it all, and that you, my dear readers, would just have to look it up for yourselves (links are above). Better yet, visit Xanthos and take a boat tour! But be prepared for a long day. We returned back to town around 6 p.m.
I can’t wait to tell you about our guide, Can. He was the first truly interesting person I met in Kas. At only 23, he has been in the tourist industry for 7 years. That means he started working at 17. This was the first thing that made him stand out to me. I find it unusual in Turkey for a young person to work while attending university, especially one whose parents are a doctor and a lawyer! Good for you, Can!
His degree is in agriculture and he plans to get a master’s degree in business. Can had no doubt about what his future holds. he wasn’t to own a manufacturing company, one that manufacturers seeds. Apparently Israel and the United States head that market currently. News to me . . .
Can also wants to combine is knowledge of agriculture with what he has learned in the tourism business, and of course, with the MBA he hopes to earn. Can wants to create is own Eco-Tourism business. I look forward to seeing what he will do with that!
And Can doesn’t stop there. He also wants to focus on tourism for homosexuals. No, he is not gay. But he knows a business opportunity when he sees it! It’s clear there is a need for places where ALL feel welcome in Turkey.
He has lived in Los Angeles and London. He hopes to travel soon to Asia and South America. His love of travel is predominantly the reason he likes to work, so that he can earn his way.
Can is going to do all of this and retire by the time he is 55. I have no doubt. He is definitely someone I don’t want to lose touch with!
Can told me several times that he wanted to select which of his photos I could use. We never got around to that, mostly because I can be sneaky, so here are all of them!
If you are going:
Ibrahim Serin Sokak No: 5/A
+90 242 836 32 92
What to bring:
- sun glasses
- sun cream – protection
- swim clothes
Note: Drinks are available on the boat and in the village of Kalekoy.
Do you want to see more? Check out this video on our YouTube channel:
Very interesting, every spring and autumn I stay in Kalekoy at the Ankh, the pansiyon in which you brought your homemade Ice Cream.
Wow! How are the accommodations there? What do you do for grocery shopping?
Kekova is one of our favorite bolt holes in the winter time when there are no tourists from Ankara (or anywhere else) 😉 It’s a near perfect place to unwind the head.
I haven’t been in the town of Kekova Alan. How does it compare to Kas, if you know?
just a very small village opposite the sunken ruins and a short walk from Simena
There are five small pansiyons in the village, all are pretty basic but very clean, all run by very nice families one of whom is the mayor of Kalekoy/Ucagiz. I stay bed and breakfast and then eat what the family eat for evening meal. Ucagiz is around the bay about 15 min by boat, someone will always take you across. You can walk, it takes about 45 min if you are fit, or if you’re like me much longer 😉 A couple of years or so ago they cut an unpaved road across the rocky hills at the back of Kalekoy to Ucagiz. Locals bring their cars there in the winter when the sea can cut up rough, and walk up over the hill to the village, but the road is pretty rough, its part of the lycian way, really it is only suitable for 4 wheel drives.
It is very quiet once the last tourist boat leaves about 5pm, you need to make your own entertainment or just chill out, which I like doing. Kalekoy has two very small shops which sell the type of stuff you might buy in a corner shop in a very small town. Although most of the locals shop once a week in Demre or Kas. I leave my hire car in Ucagiz, get the boat over and drive into Kas if I need to go to ATM or chemist, that type of stuff.
Although Ucagiz has a good general store it has no ATM, and mainly caters for the locals, and the tourists trade and passing boats. I like to go across to there some afternoons and have a meal and beer and watch folk come and go on the boats.
Sounds like my cup of tea, Mick. Thanks for the additional info!!