Here we are again. Almost at the end of the year. And so it’s that time where we have a look back at what’s passed. 2016 is certainly going to go down as ‘turbulent’ for many, but that’s all the more reason to look back at some personal 2016 highlights and fully appreciate all those little happy moments, too.
So here it is: A year in the life of Turkey’s For Life. Fethiye, food and travel – and some blog highlights, too. Let’s race back through the last 12 months…
2016 Highlights – Fethiye
Bars & Restaurants
We’ve been able to make a few additions (and, unfortunately, a couple of deletions) to our list of places to eat and drink around Fethiye in 2016. Some of the places have been around for some time; it’s just that we’d either never been there before or it had taken an age to get get round to writing about them. Other places are brand new this year. We’re proper bar people and proper foodies so these new openings are always highlights for us.
Kukina Caferia along Çarşı 95 Sokak – the street of umbrellas – opened its doors in springtime and is firmly on our list of ‘go to’ places whenever we do a pit stop in town. Another newbie on the scene is Çarıklı Et Restaurant. Meaty feasts at Çarıklı Et and in our post, we said they also do a kokoreç pizza. We were more than curious about this so we’ve since been back to share one. A definite foodie highlight of 2016. They’re fab!
We wander between lots of different places around the area. And some of those places, we’ve still not even written about. One of the ones we did get to write about in 2016 was Lukka, at the end of Çalış Beach. We also got round to writing about one of our all time favourite foodie places, Seçkin Restaurant. Homemade Turkish cuisine in the heart of industrial Fethiye. And whenever we fancy a little drive to the mountains, another 2016 favourite has been Kırkpınar Restaurant for kavurma or trout.
A New Tourist Attraction
It had to be done! 2016 was the year we added the umbrellas along Çarşı 95 Sokak to our list of things you ought to see and do when in Fethiye. Well, it’s just so pretty!
Events In Fethiye
Again, there are lots of organised goings-on around the Fethiye, many of which we put on our events calendar. Main highlights of 2016 for us, though, were late summer and early autumn. The Kayaköy Roots Music Festival meant we got to see Burhan Öçal and his orchestra, The Trakya All Stars, perform live. In October, we took part in the 2nd Fethiye Race For Life. A couple of weeks later, we had a fantastic day at Ölüdeniz for the annual International Ölüdeniz Air Games.
2016 Travelling Turkey Highlights
An endless pot of money for wandering – wouldn’t it just be the best, eh? Anyway, the travels we do manage to do on the budget we have, we always fully appreciate. And every bit of travel we do is a highlight. No apologies for gushing about different places.
The screenshot above is from my personal Swarm app account. It’s great if you’re a map nerd like me. I only started to use it in April this year, hence no markers over Antalya, but each time we’re somewhere different, I check us in. These are the little pieces of Turkey we’ve mapped through 2016 – minus the Antalya bit. The single pins dotted along the length of the country are various bus stations en route to Istanbul from Fethiye and back.
We’ve only just realised this, but 2016’s travels that have taken us away for a few days have all been to do with running. In March, we were in Antalya for Runatolia. No point going away just to run though. In 2016, we finally made it to the ancient Perge ruins, too. Far more impressive than we envisaged, too, and well worth the mini adventure getting there. We also love to take in the city each time we’re there and the stunning walk from Kaleiçi to Konyaaltı is always on the itinerary.
A highlight of 2016 was reaquainting ourselves with Bodrum in April. We were there for the Bodrum Global Run but gave ourselves a few days to enjoy Bodrum centre and have a little look around the peninsula, too. The small town of Yalıkavak was a favourite – one to definitely return to. As usual, with us, we booked a small pension, Ağan, and also had a simple foodie highlight in discovering a tiny seafood eatery, Duru Balık.
Sooooo long since we’d spent a day on the Greek island of Meis (Kastellorizo). When my dad came over in October for a visit, we decided it was about time my dad went there. It was also time for us to reacquaint ourselves with the island – and its lovely food and drink! This most recent visit means we’ve now properly updated our article about things to do in Kastellorizo.
And what’s a year in Turkey without a visit to our special city, Istanbul? Running again! In November, it’s the Istanbul Marathon – which is actually a marathon, 15k, 10k and also an 8k fun run. So November is, more often than not, our Istanbul time. Funds determine how long we get to spend there. This year was a fleeting visit but we did get a real foodie highlight in finding Erzurum cağ kebabı, there.
UNESCO World Heritage List 2016
Great news this year as 2016 was the year the Ani ruins were added to UNESCO’s Turkey World Heritage List. Another place we’ve also visited, the amazing tombstones at Ahlat were also added to the pending list. Here’s hoping they make the full list soon…
Cooking At Home – 2016 Highlights
Because we have more time to ourselves, winter is when we do most of our cooking at home. And we now have a little backlog of recipes to put on the blog. You’ve loved our healthy bulgur wheat recipe throughout 2016. New recipes we’ve added to our Turkish recipes collection throughout the year are the börek recipe, paçanga; the early spring recipe, bulgur wheat with çiriş and a take a on a Turkish classic, fırında mücver.
Your Favourites Of 2016
Well we can’t have a 2016 highlights without looking at what you’ve liked of ours throughout the year.
On The Blog
We’re really pleased about this. 2016 has been a tough year for Turkish tourism and Istanbul has taken a huge hit. However, it’s an amazing city that doesn’t disappear from people’s radars. And our most viewed post of 2016 – that was put together in 2016 – was our great big guide to Topkapı Palace. Here’s hoping for a 2017 boost for tourism!
On Social Media
We’re not gonna pretend it’s not a good feeling as your number of followers and likes per post clicks up throughout the year on whatever social media outlets we use. Of course, it’s great – but the main point of trying to increase numbers is because that means Turkey is on more people’s radars as a great place to visit.
We’re not big on goal setting but we set ourselves a little goal of trying to reach 3,000 followers on Instagram by the end of 2016. Well, we’re finishing the year just shy of 3,400. So we’re happy people. No tricks; just sharing a photo each day. We share one or two more when we’re elsewhere in Turkey.
At the end of each year, it’s possible to generate your best 9 photos on Instagram. And this is ours for 2016. Most of our top 9 photos are from Fethiye and Çalış, but, as with last year’s best 9 collection, one photo has made it from our little wanders. The turtle in the bay at Kastellorizo came in at number 2! Well done turtle! Click here to follow us on Instagram. Thanks, if you already follow us!
A little spurt as the year comes to an end and we’ve crept through 8,000 followers in the Twittersphere. Thank you! Whether you’re a seasoned ‘Tweep’ or you just dip into Twitter occasionally and you want to follow us, you can find us here.
Wow! Creeping towards 18,000 of you over on Facebook with lots of engagement, photos and article sharing. All Turkey related, of course. Thanks a lot for all your comments and likes! Nothing at all scientific about this but we think the most liked photo of 2016 on our Facebook page was this one from the lovely Paspatur; Fethiye’s old town.
If you already like us on Facebook, thanks a lot, as usual. If you don’t, but you want to join us, here’s our page.
And that’s about it. All that’s left to say is, thanks so much for all your support throughout 2016. Have a VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR and we’ll see you on the other side in 2016! MUTLU YILLAR!