Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Bodrum

We spent two weeks in Bodrum which is known for two things. It has the most famous disco in all of Turkey and it is the centre of a thriving ship building industry.


The Halikarnas disco may be the most famous disco in Turkey but I am sure it is also the loudest disco in the entire world.


The first few nights we were anchored off Bodrum in a bay with a gorgeous view of an old castle. We didn’t realize that we also happened to be about 100 metres from the disco. At midnight on the first night, we were awakened to a fabulous display of fireworks set off from a pier in front of the disco. On the 2nd, 3rd and 4th nights, the music from the disco awoke us anywhere from 2am to 3:30 am. After an hour or so , we would struggle back to sleep only to be awoken again at 5:30 am by the nearby mosque calling it’s faithful to prayer. We didn’t want to leave Bodrum because we really liked it but one can only take so much sleep deprivation. After a tour of the castle, we moved to Icmeler which is only 4 km down the coast. We could still hear the beat of the music from there but it didn’t awaken us in the middle of the night.
Icmeler is a boat builder’s dream. It is a commercial area full of boat yards and boat part suppliers. We strolled past many boat yards where large wooden boats (called Gullets) were being built and repaired. We have seen hundreds of these boats all over Turkey where tourists will charter them for a day trip or a longer cruises around the islands. We were fortunate to be invited aboard a 90' Gullet owned by a Turkish couple. They had approached us because they saw our Canadian flag and the owner had worked in Canada for a few years and was feeling nostalgic. The boat was gorgeous inside and out but Steve and I agreed we would never want to own one (outside of the enormous investment), because it is a full time job for at least one person to keep it varnished and protected from the Mediterranean sun.

We took advantage of the fact that we were surrounded by boat part suppliers to do a few days of routine maintenance on Toboggan. The weather was perfect for a little work. The days were not too hot thanks to a lovely Mediterranean breeze and the nights were nice and cool so we got a good night‘s sleep after a hard day‘s work.

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