"Cruising the Lycian Shore" is our first cruise in Turkey since October 2019, On this occasion, to give an impression of the experience, we are providing a kind of travel diary. Every day we will pick one image we took that day, accompanied by some explanations and thoughts.
In the well-known words of Robert Burns, "the best laid schemes o' Mice an' Men gang aft agley", or "the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry"! Of course, I can't speak for mice.
Nearly a week ago, I wrote a whole diary entry about things not always going to plan - and about how that's actually part of the thrill that a gulet cruise might entail. Well, would you believe it...?
Today, we were hoping to visit a key ancient city in central Lycia, Xanthos. For the first time in decades of our cruising here, we could not do so - exceptionally, the site was temporarily closed on government orders, due to the danger of wildfires. It's a pity, as I would have loved to share a picture here of the spectacular 'pillar graves' overlooking the ancient theatre, or of the enormous Early Byzantine basilica church, or of so many other fascinating features. I've been wanting to write about Xanthos for a long time on this blog - and I promise I'll do so soon.
Funnily enough, we probably couldn't have gone there anyway. There's a system of strong winds blowing across the area and after an initial morning crossing to Fırnaz, one of our favourite coves near Kalkan, we decided to stay put. Neither the harbour piers nor a more improvised landfall on the nearby coast seemed a good idea to us - and we've not been the only ones to make that judgement: there are three other gulets and some small boats nearby, all having made the same decision to stay the night.
Burns's quote continues on how the awry-going leaves "nought but grief an’ pain, for promis’d joy". That part does not apply to us, we had a grand day and our share of joy, if not exactly what was promis'd! It's really not much of a problem for us: as I described last week, our itineraries are designed with such contingencies in mind, so we'll continue our visits in the final days of the cruise. For our guests, it meant a leisurely time of resting, chatting, snorkelling, kayaking and swimming, all possible in our sheltered cove for most of the day.
For once, I won't say what we do tomorrow: let's not jinx it!