Making the most of our holiday buy back scheme at work meant that Esther and I had just enough holiday to book a couple of nights in Turkey at the end of August.  Our first holiday with just to two of us … eek.   Friends and family advised the Olu Deniz  would be a good destination, so we booked.  5 nights, 3*, B&B. 

We flew into Dalaman airport, the transfer to Olu Deniz took roughly an hour.  We arrived late in the evening, but were still able to check in with no problems, and the room was ok if not a little on the simple side, it made a change from being in dorm rooms though.

Olu Deniz sunset

Olu Deniz sunset

I had a picture of what I thought Olu Deniz would look like in my head, the reality was nothing like what I’d imagined, but that was in no way a bad thing.  I think where I went wrong was the scale.  Olu Deniz was bigger than I imagined, a lot more shops, bars and restaurants, but it still wasn’t too in your face.  The usual fakes clothing and watches were on sale, but this was nothing out of the norm. The main road leading up to the beach was filled with restaurants showing X factor and the football.  The road parallel to the beach was where the bars were located.  Everything was reasonably priced, and there weren’t too many over zealous bar/restaurant owners trying to drag you into their place.  As we were B&B we went out for dinner each night.  The food on offer on the main road was of very good quality and reasonable.  The selection was wide, with lots of sea food on offer.  We tried some of the local dishes, but also went for a Chinese one night.  Our favourite bar was Buzz bar where the roof terrace was located.  Their ice cream cocktails and chocolate waffles were also pleasing to my sweet tooth. 

Olu Deniz is famous of paragliding, and the dates we’d chosen to visit coincided with a paragliding tournament.  We’re not sure which tourno exactly, but most evenings we would sit in a roof top bar somewhere and watch the paragliders navigate back down to earth whilst the sun set in the background.  It was a very chilled atmosphere and most relaxing. 

Olu Deniz sunset

Olu Deniz paragliding festival

We were fortunate to be able to sit out most evenings, because on all but 2 of the days we were in Olu Deniz, the heavens opened and water filled the streets.  The beach and pool were no go areas for most of our holiday.  One of our rain days was spent in a Turkish bath, whilst was surprisingly pleasant.  I say that because the last massage I’d had (Sri Lanka), had felt like someone taking a brillo pad to my back.  Our Turkish bath began with a quick sauna before we were moved into a marble chamber in which several very naked Germans (I think) were already being scrubbed down.  I went first and was covered in foam, massaged and then scrubbed clean.  It was very relaxing once you’d got used to lying on the marble.  Esther then went next, managing to keep her bikini in tack.  Our masseur was a cheeky chappy though, winking at me whilst massaging Esther and then insisting on covering us both in freezing water once we were finished, it was all in good spirits though and put a smile on our faces.  Next up was another massage.  It wasn’t bad to be honest and lasted just about the right amount of time.  The only concerning was when my masseur jumped up onto the massage table and straddled my head.  I dared not lift my head to see what was going on for fear of causing him an injury and me embarrassment

On the days the sun did come out, we spent a day around the pool getting burnt, and took a boat trip around several neighbouring beaches.  The boat trip took up a whole day, but it was pleasant.  They packed us onto the boat (not quite as badly as in Croatia), but it was an ok crowd and drinks were free.  We toured around, getting off at several small beaches, it was pretty standard, but we were just glad it wasn’t raining.

That’s about it from Turkey, it was only a short trip, but it was a nice little getaway.  See below for info about Dalaman airport, the prices are scandalous, we went hungry rather than paying £15 each for a burger king, and our flight was delayed which meant we missed the last bus home from Liverpool street underground station.  The next day at work was painful.

Tips:

  • Turkish baths – have one, they were dirt cheap and lasted ages.  A really good experience.
  • Buzz bar – head upstairs and sit on the roof terrace.  Watch the sun go down whilst sipping on one of their tasty ice cream cocktails.
  • Paragliding – although we didn’t get the chance due to the weather, I’m told its some of the best in the world.
  • Dalaman Airport – take food to the airport to eat whilst you wait for your flight home, the price in the airport are ridiculous.