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Would someone who would never even consider a regular cruise be happy with a blue gulet cruise in Turkey?

Would someone who would never even consider a regular cruise be happy with a blue gulet cruise in Turkey?

Apr 29th, 2007, 03:58 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,229
Would someone who would never even consider a regular cruise be happy with a blue gulet cruise in Turkey?

I am wondering whether or not we should take a blue gulet cruise. We are middle-aged and typically very active on vacations. We do a ton of walking, lots of sightseeing, and we've taken trekking vacations and bicycling vacations. We pretty much go all day on our acations. We don't take beach vacations where we just sit around a relax for a week. I can sit in the sun and read for a day or two, but that's it. My husband can maybe do this for an hour or two before he is up and looking for something to do. We have never had any interest whatsoever in taking a regular Caribbean type cruise.

That said, we do enjoy the outdoors and water sports like kayaking and snorkeling. My husband is an avid fly fisherman, and we do own a boat and a canoe of our own. While we don't do much of it any more, we used to do a lot of camping in national parks etc., and we don't need or want pampering.

I am worried that in reality these cruises are just a different way for people to take a relaxing vacation and end up primarily sitting in the sun, doing some reading and drinking for relaxation, and stopping for periodic opportunities to swim. Would we regret spending our time and money on one of these? If you've taken one and can give me some insights, I'd really appreciate it.
julies is offline  
Apr 30th, 2007, 06:31 AM
Join Date: May 2005
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I sure hope so, because I'm going on a 2-week one in mid-May ;-). I'm totally not a cruise person, but a friend organized this trip and it sounded great so I'm going.

The main reason I think this particular gulet trip will be enjoyable for me, though, is that it's focused specifically on archeology and led by a British archeologist, Peter Sommer. You might have a look at his website to see if any of his trips meet your schedule but I think the minimum amount of time is one week so that may or may not work for you.

When is your trip planned for? I'd be happy to report back after mine if you're at all interested.
NWWanderer is offline  
Apr 30th, 2007, 08:22 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
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I took a gulet cruise years ago and was disappointed. We were supposed to dock at various places and have time to explore, but in reality we would arrive late in the day, have very little time on land, and then sail-off. Most of the people on the gulet really wanted to relax and swim. I would look very closely at the cruise itinerary before committing to it.
hotticket is offline  
Apr 30th, 2007, 09:45 AM
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We took a wonderful gulet trip with an archaeologist guide.We hiked extensively and were happy to get backto the boat at the end of the day for a refreshing swim.The scenery was gorgeous and the ancient sights were mind-boggling.I would and probably will do a gulet trip again.I hope this helps you with your decision.
mflickermd is offline  
Apr 30th, 2007, 09:57 AM
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mflickermd, did you go with Peter Sommer? Just curious since as I said, we're going on one of his trips in a few weeks. I'm sure there's more than one archeologist guide doing gulet trips though.

NWWanderer is offline  
May 1st, 2007, 11:44 AM
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It all depns on with who and which itinerary you are following. usually people take gulet cruises to relax, swim, sun etc. But there are private cruises arranged by travel agencies who are specialized with archeology & trekking....Than it becomes an active and relaxing cruise. some people even mountain bike during day and overnight at gulet, some does yoga sessions and use gulet for the activity and the lodging........ Peter Sommers whom I know is doing this well as well.

Happy Cruising,
propertravel is offline  
May 1st, 2007, 11:51 AM
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I think they could potentially be amazing. I'd love to do one, but didn't have enough time when I was there. I'd research them carefully, though! A lot of the ones I saw leaving from Fethiye were party boats, complete with stops at (I kid you not) Disco Island.
Hisurfer is offline  
May 1st, 2007, 11:55 AM
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I haven't done this but am potentially considering such a trip in the future, and so I am reading this with interest.

I have many of the same reservations; a day or two in the sun with a book is great. Then I need to explore some ruins, meet some people, take a hike, kayak, sit in a cafe, etc.

I have no connection with this company (I know someone who works for them on contract, but nothing involved with the Turkey trips) but the itineraries advertised with Wilderness Travel (based out of Berkeley CA) sound active and it is an extremely reputable company.

Using a US company may be a pricy way to do it (as opposed to arranging it yourself) but you would most likely get accurate information about the activty level of the trip.
annabelle2 is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2007, 10:59 PM
Join Date: Mar 2006
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Just wondering if you decided to do the gulet in Turkey. You are describing us exactly. WE are also middle aged??? & independent travelers & would not consider a cruise or beach vacations but are looking into gulets & Turkey travel for June 2008. Have you looked at TUSSOCK gulet? Friends did it last yr and loved it. Also Cappadocia tours looked good. AM interested in what you decided?
lajolla is offline  
Oct 4th, 2007, 01:35 AM
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Hisurfer and Annabelle2;
Yes there are party boats which are usually cabin charters. To avoid them if you are able to charter a boat on your own and perpare the itienrary beforehand carefully would avoid all unwanted experiences.
While cruising on Gulet you are able to do day trips at places of intersts & anceint sites and enjoy restaurants and cafees as well, as much as you want to.
Many people thinks a week on gulet might be boring; but not. Especially if you are following an interesting route and if you have a good crew.
Apart from swimming, sleeping, reading and eating; you try to help the cook and learn some Turkish cooking, scuba dive (pre arranged)join a day or two tours at places of interests like Caunos at Dalyan, Hidden Gorge & Tlos, Patara near Fethiye or Kalkan, Kekova. There are also activity boats available for Yoga sessions or art studies.

Happy sailing,

propertravel is offline  
Oct 4th, 2007, 05:09 AM
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We didn't do the cruise. When we were in Olympos (where we spent 2 nights and one day) we saw two of the gulets come in and anchor for the afternoon. Most people got off and went to the beach to lie in the sun while some others went to hike the ruins. Frankly, while the coastal area may have been beautiful in some places and some ruins quite interesting, the coast was the least favorite part of our trip. Turkey sold its soul as far as coastal development.
julies is offline  
Oct 4th, 2007, 05:18 AM
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No one has mentioned the biggest complaint I've heard over and over, and that is the quality of the gulet and crew, and the cabins themselves. People often mention that most do not have airconditioning and the cabins can be way too hot to sleep in. Many people have reported that they end up sleeping on deck instead. There have also been numerous complaints about crew members who were everything from just unfriendly to being drunk for the whole cruise.

So I guess it's just a reminder that you need to know exactly what your facilities are and you need to get some good feedback regarding the crew (although admittedly that is never a given).
NeoPatrick is online now  
Oct 4th, 2007, 05:28 AM
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I forgot to mention I did an extensive trip report. Search under my name and you'll find it. I think the only thing I didn't include was our time in istanbul.
julies is offline  
Oct 4th, 2007, 07:02 AM
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Our family of 4 had a whole gulet to ourselves (wasn't cheap but compared to staying in Italy. . .) and had a wonderful time. Saw amazing ruins, hiked to wonderful remote places, kayaked, swam, scuba dived and snorkeled. We had a guide who is picky and would only rent gulets from a particular family, knowing they were clean and honest and did a good job.
rickandpat is offline  
Oct 5th, 2007, 12:40 AM
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Neopatrick; you are right, at my previous post regarding gulet I have mentioned but worth mentioning again:

Gulet Cruise; can be most fun and pamparing travel experience on the water but there are some do's and donm's ofcourse. The population of gulets are growing by day and quality of operators varies.

First of all we should define two type of gulet cruise's: Private Gulet Charter and Cabin Charter

Cabin Charter can be like a Russian Roulette, you do not know what type of crowds you will be travelling with within 20-30 meters ! Some have great fun and some dissappointed by the end of it. It is very cheap comparing land accommodation including 3 course of meal. Beverages are always extra and sometimes you pay over than expected as the charter is cheap compansation is on the beverages!

Private Charter; much more individual and offers freedom. Altough you have a route you can decide to skip areas and enjoy one area longer than other, go out as you like, choose the menu yourself and ask to be served at your leisure etc. Private charter boats usually are better quality, newer etc.

Than again facilities of the boat, crew and route plays most important role.

Private charters can be booked either directly from the owner or from Yacht Charter companies or their agents. They know the boat inside out, know the crew and they have influance on the owners as they provide the business so they are able to dominate and can demand much more than average person.

This does not mean you will always get good results from these operators as well. The key is to be in touch with a reputable operator who cares about his operation and have good contcat with both owners and the crew.

Why Gulet cruise is expensive ! ?

A good gulet with 4 -5 cabins 25 -30 meters, with fully equipped gears costs avarage 1 million Euros ! It takes 1,5 to 2 years to built. Season is about 20 weeks. Winter treatments are expensive and good crew needs to be paid year around. 5 cabin deluxe gulet can be hired anything between 1000 -2000 Euros daily. Means aaverage 150 Euros per person per day including food. Such a luxury for this little is not expensive.
Once you charter a deluxe Gulet for two persons than you buy privacy and comfort of a large boat and you pay as much as a luxury europen hotels Bed and Breakfast rate.

A luxury gulet can be 10.000 Euro's a day as well.
So basicly what you pay is what you get if you also choose the right operator with good crew. The more you pay is not a guarantee that you get better service if you did not study well.

Happy travelling, happy sailing,

propertravel is offline  
Oct 5th, 2007, 05:58 AM
Join Date: May 2003
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This may be well past the time for the original poster but please consider www.seascape-sail.com. We did it in May/June 2003 and had a wonderful time. We too are independent travelers. The balance of our group was great a mix of one other couple and four singles, the boat great, the leaders own the boats they use (they are Brits but have lived in the US and know what US clients expect). It is also a very reasonable price for all that is included. Even if you don't go with them their website will give you some good details to consider if you are comparing others. If you go say hi to Diane and Ray!
laurie_ann is offline  
Oct 6th, 2007, 01:38 AM
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Laurie_ann; the company you suggest is not a legitimate company in Turkey. As far as I know they can charter in Turkish waters but if passangers embarks in Turkey and they pay for the charter this can create a problem for the sailing....Last week some passangers stood at Marmaris marina as they were booked a skippered sailing boat without a company and found out the boat was stolen. Just my view on chartering a boat issue.

Happy sailing,
propertravel is offline  
Oct 8th, 2007, 03:24 AM
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Murat, my reference to Sea Scape was not to charter a boat. They run organized trips in Greece and Turkey and have for 12 years. They own their own boats. Please, it is a well respected company. In fact, half the others our our ship had sailed with them on previous trips. I would not hesitate to recommend them.
laurie_ann is offline  
Oct 8th, 2007, 03:35 AM
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In regards to your statement >>We have never had any interest whatsoever in taking a regular Caribbean type cruise.<< Research is an amazing thing; if you do one on Caribbean type cruises you would be amazed of the amunt of activities and sightseeing that fills the typical day. If you want to lay down all day on a lounge chair by the pool, nobody judges you. If you want to rock-climb, take 3 aerobic classes, or explore an island by kayak, horse, or moped, you can do that as well. Cruises are your ultimate active vacations.
Viajero2 is offline  
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