Alaçati: a Stunning Turkish Discovery
I feel like discovering new places is definitely one of my biggest joys in life (after food). Last year we went and got lost in Japan, this year, we decided to hit closer from home: in Turkey.
We have already been multiple times in Istanbul, and a couple of times in Bodrum or Fetiye which is closer to the sea in the north west of the country. This is time we decided to go to Alacati, another area in the south west that is close to the sea. If you are fanatic of kitesurfing, surfing or windsurfing, this city must ring a bell. It is known to be in the top 10 of places to go to practice those water sports, a “Mecca” of wind sports if you will.
Raphaël’s family, being Turkish and familiar with the area, managed to find the most gorgeous boutique hotel for us in the middle of the village. It was called Casa Luna Otel and I couldn’t recommend a hotel more. It was tiny with 8 or 9 rooms and about 4 or 5 staff members on rotation. In the morning we had the hugest breakfast ever. Everything was homemade in their kitchen and everyday there were variations, different types of eggs, borek or marmelades.
They never ceased to surprise us with their devine hospitality skills; when we would come back form our daily adventures, which mainly consisted of getting lost somewhere, they would greet us with fresh lemonade and homemade little cakes which were to. die. for.
For our first night there, you have to imagine our situation: we were catapulted in the city that we new nothing about, we didn’t do any research or googled pictures to see what to expect and here we were, at 9p.m, just checked in our hotel, our stomachs were rumbling and we were facing a dark cobble stone street with vague directions on where to go grab a bite. After walking for about 50 meters on the same street, we started hearing more and more music, there were more and more little restaurants and coffee places, and twenty meters after that, we were smack in the middle of hundreds of people.
I think that thats when we realised that we were not at all in a tiny lost city but more like in the St Tropez of Turkey. Everyone was young and energetic, getting ready to go to bars and clubs, having mesé (little Turkish appetisers) in the middle of the street, smoking the cigarets and their hookahs while chatting loudly and sipping on the Rakyes (Turkish almond alcohol that every body drinks for some reason).
I have to admit that I was pretty much baffled by this situation, I wasn’t expecting much of this village, maybe a corner bar with people playing backgammon and an artisanal bakery but instead here we are in the middle of an “It” crowd in an “it” city. Part of me was very excited and another was still in shock of the contrast.
During our stay we ended up getting caught up in a routine: in the morning we would have breakfast at the hotel, then get lost in a different area of the surroundings, and in the afternoon we would find a decent hookah bar that had iced tea, shade, and backgammon. We would play for hours on end until the we couldn’t really see the backgammon pieces anymore and our tummies were rumbling. Then we would try to find our way back to Casa Luna, shower, change and head out for dinner.
On three separate occasions we went to the beach. On day 2, we tagged along Raphaël’s family friends to some sort of club beach house beach thing. It was on a certain part of the coast that wasn’t protected for the wind so the water was freezing.
On day 3, we decided to find a shore that was protected from the wind. That was when the true adventure started. To get to that wind protected haven we had to take a Dolmush.
Taking the Dolmush for people who are used to the comfy Swiss public transports is worth writing a book about. To make it short, it’s a tiny bus in which you almost have to jump in while its still moving, pay the driver while he's slaloming in traffic and either have to stand up or be the lucky one to have a rare seat!
Once at the beach, we were speechless, the water was so clear, it was almost empty of any human (everyone must have been still asleep from the partying the day before) and there wasn't any wind at all and most important, the water was warm(er).
After being exposed to the sun for way too long, we headed back to Alacati where we had the delicious waffle ice cream sandwich!
That was one of the amazing things about this tiny town, they had all the uber "trendy food". They had the ice cream that you create on a cold slate and roll up somehow, they had the ice cream that you serve on a cushion of candy floss, they had super cool coffee shops... you name it, it was there!
By the way, if you are a shopper that looks for super unique fashion pieces, look no further: every little boutique has very unique Turkish designers that have a lot of unique pieces, I found my amazingggggg Pablo Escobar jacket that I wore all summer long there!
It was a magical trip and we might just be going back soon !
Thank you so much for reading my summer holiday post so late in the game! (Am I the worst blogger? Probs)
Thanks for reading and see you very very soon,