We disembarked from our boat in the morning, boarded a new bus and began the journey from Marmaris to Kusadasi. The only event on the way was an elegant lunch at a winery. The beautiful villa and restaurant could have been in Napa or Sonoma. We arrived at our hotel In the early afternoon and explored the hotel, took a walk, stopped at the supermarket for water and fruit, and decided against swimming in the Aegean Sea.
We awoke early, looking forward to our excursion to the ancient city of Ephesus. We had heard so much about this site, and were hoping it would be as spectacular as others had said. And it was! We wandered through the amazing ruins for several hours, learning about life in the city, noticing small details and monumental buildings, visiting the Roman bath, library, agora, theater, and communal WC. It was fabulous.
We left the site and drove a few minutes to the Basilica of St. John. Then on to a special treat-a ride up a winding road, through unbelievable numbers of olive trees, to the collage of Sirenge. This mountain town is a favorite weekend destination of Turks. Known for its wines and olive oil, narrow cobbled streets and good restaurants, it is a perfect destination for a Sunday outing. We had another great lunch of. Mezzi-the exquisite Turkish small plates, including the best olives I have ever tasted. We wandered the narrow streets after lunch for a bit and then back to the hotel for a relaxing afternoon before our farewell dinner.
Tomorrow we head for home, leaving the hotel at 6:15 AM for a short flight from Izmir to Istanbul, then 14 hours to Los Angeles, then back to Denver! Arriving at midnight.
We spent many hours on the bus on our way to the boat that would be our home for .4 nights. In addition to WC and coffee breaks, we also toured the ruins of Myra. The highlights were the tombs built into the cliffs, and a theater. Strewn around we’re pieces of marble and stone with intricate carvings, including many dramatic faces, probably announcing that this was a theater. Next came a local lunch, then a brief visit to the church f St. Nicholas. Back on the bus, and finally an early evening arrival at the wharf in Feithe. We said farewell to our wonderful driver (whose last name was Kaplan) and boarded.
It take us long to fall into the relaxing routine of boat life. Meals were al fresco at a long table and were announced by a bell. We gathered for amazing food prepared in a tiny galley by our wonderful chef. Favorites included thick yoghurt with local honey, borek (kind of like cheese kugel), stuffed eggplant, moussaka, grilled whole fish, and shush kabob. After breakfast there was a land activity, then back in time for a swim off the boat. Lunch followed, then a few hours of. Rising. With no Internet, there was plenty of time for snoozing, reading, schmoozing, and a second swim. And just in case there we were hungry, there was afternoon coffee and tea and delicious cakes and cookies. Then showers , dinner, and a game of S rabble before turning in.
The first morning we took a short hike to a town abandoned by the Greeks I. The 1920s when Greece and Turkey agreed to repatriate people to their original homeland. We hiked over a hill and down to a co e where our boat was waiting for us. The second day only four of us opted for the longer hike. It was beautiful, winding up through the forest to a shepherd’s farm, then down to a new cove with our boat waiting for us. The third day a small boat picked us up and took us up a river with a stop to see another ancient settlement and then to a resort town.
We thoroughly enjoyed this interlude on the Mediterranean, and we’re well rested for the last leg f our journey.