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April – Sunny Spring News From Fethiye

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And that was April in Fethiye. The month where the summer season makes a tentative start.

So it’s time for us to update you with the monthly news from life in Fethiye…

Colourful basket-weave parasols along Çalış Beach. Plastic sunbeds with blue mattresses are stacked underneath them.
Freshly-sprayed parasols for summer 2024

What are the clues that give away the fact that summer in Fethiye has begun?

Most of these clues are visible around Çalış Beach.

The sun loungers and umbrellas are all dusted down and resprayed. Then they’re returned to their places along the beach.

A water taxi sails past along a canal.
The Çalış water taxi started its crossings earlier this month

At the Çalış Boat Cooperative, all the day trip boats make their way back from dry dock to the water. And then the Çalış water taxi begins its crossings across the bay to Fethiye centre.

For the 2024 season, the water taxi service will also be expanded.

A speedboat has been added to the mix. This will be available for use for crossings to the Fethiye Peninsula – Küçük Boncuklu Bay (formerly Help Beach) and Büyük Boncuklu Bay (Sea Me Beach).

A red speedboat in the canal at Çalış. Other boats are also moored up behind it.
A new speedboat service for 2024

They’ve also said there will be a service from Çalış to all-inclusive hotels like Liberty Fabay and Barut Sensatori, as well as a service over to Göcek.

We don’t know any more details than that at the moment but will post more when we find out.

In the meantime, you can ask the guys at the Çalış Boat office for prices and services available.

And many bars and restaurants that were closed over the winter had a spruce up or a clean up. And, as I type, most, if not all of, those places are now open for business.

Throughout May, the Fethiye beaches, bars and restaurants of Ölüdeniz, Hisarönü and Ovacık will follow suit. And then we’ll be in the full thrust of the 2024 summer season.

Hope it’s a good one for all!

But back to April for now. And anyone who came over for an early season holiday was treated to some great local weather!

Except that is, if you were here when we were engulfed by the Saharan sandstorm.

Hot winds on one of the days. And temperatures hit the mid to high 30s whilst we were cloaked in a blanket of grey!

Thankfully, it was short lived and the blue skies soon returned.

A very welcome sight it was, too!

April is always a busy month on the Fethiye events calendar.

A bit of spring weather lightens the mood. And the temperatures are usually perfect for some outdoor events and festivals.

It was a bit of a last minute announcement – we’d actually written it off for another year – but the fabulous Yeşilüzümlü Dastar & Mushroom Festival took place 19th-21st April.

A man dances in traditional Turkish nomadic outfit. A drummer and crowds surround him.
There was lots of music and dancing at the festival

The local belediye (council) put on a free bus service from the centre of Fethiye and the whole festival was bigger and better than ever.

We made use of the bus service to go up for the final day on the Sunday and it was so lovely to see soooo many people there.

There were precious few morel mushrooms to celebrate due to the lack of rain. But that didn’t dampen the atmosphere one iota.

A lady on a market stall selling dastar products.
Not many mushrooms but lots of dastar

Due to their scarcity, the morels (kuzugöbeği) were commanding a whopping 1,500 TL per kilo.

We treated ourselves to a pack of dried morel mushroom stems for a more palatable 200 TL.

The local dastar isn’t affected by such things as lack of rain. There was lots of that for sale.

Craft stalls, food stalls, live performances, concerts, talks, dancing, eating, drinking.

Definitely up there with the best Turkish festivals, these days!

Of course, April 23rd is a national holiday – National Sovereignty & Children’s Day.

Children from around the world, as well as local kids, took part in celebrations in the town square and elsewhere around the area.

And some had been given the opportunity to also perform their traditional dances on stage at the mushroom festival, too.

In the world of local musicians, we had Wooden Fest at the beginning of April.

A mother and toddler paddling in the sea on a sandy beach.
It was a beautiful sunny day for Wooden Fest

This is an all-day event that is hosted by Wooden Stage Beach at Karataş Beach.

Fortunately, for this one, it was a lovely sunny day. So sunny that we had to hunt for some shade.

It was only when the sun started to lower that the standing areas in front of the stage started to fill up.

April was also:

  • the month when the Presidential Tour of Turkey took place. Riders set off from Fethiye to Marmaris on the 23rd.
  • the month when boxing fans were treated to a night of boxing at Beşkaza Meydanı. Local professional boxer, Kubilay Alcu had his 13th professional fight and won.
  • the month where World Dance Day took place. Dances were performed at the culture centre on the edge of the square.
  • the month of World Disco Soup Day. Organised by the Slow Food Movement, this is a day that encourages us all to reduce food waste by making soup out of any odds and ends you may have lurking in your fridge.

We’re off to the UK soon for a few days to catch up with family and friends so there hasn’t been lots going on by way of eating out – certainly not of the gourmet variety, anyway.

Beachy weather has meant a few days along Çalış Beach at our usual Calisto haunt.

And a recent shopping trip to the Sunday market in Çalış meant a lovely lunch of gözleme and ayran.

A crusty bread filled with battered fish and salad with a serving of pickles in the background.
The balık ekmek at the cooperative is back on form

And earlier in the month, we dropped into the Çalış Fishermen’s Cooperative for a good old balık ekmek.

Their fish sandwiches are very much on the ball at the moment and the place has had a bit of an extension to its outdoor seating area, too.

Lovely to sit along the canal, watching the water taxi go by.

Whilst errands in Fethiye centre gave us the excuse to grab a pide at our favourite pide spot, Nefis Kordon.

A close up of pepperoni pizza.
We love the pizzas at Mojo

Oh, and we haven’t written an article about it yet…

But if you’re around the Barış Manço Bulvarı area (the main road leading away from Çalış Beach), there’s a new Italian pizza/pasta place that’s opened called Mojo.

We found ourselves in there by accident, recently, and their Neapolitan-style pizzas are awesome.

Well, we think so, anyway.

As usual, there’s always something being done to this blog.

The noticeable and the not so noticeable.

Noticeable is always new and updated posts, of course.

A cross section of a bowl containing a pea and feta salad. Chopped beetroot and cashew nuts are also visible.
Flavours of spring in this pea and feta salad

We’re loving all the seasonal produce on the local markets at the moment. Lots of spring greens prompted us to make this lovely crisp and crunchy green pea and feta salad recipe.

And all the lovely green beans are just begging to be made into the famous Turkish green beans in olive oil.

With regards to a bit of slow travel, we’ve revisited the Antalya Province and revamped our articles about both Phaselis and beautiful Olympos.

A portrait image of Olympos Beach. Mountains are in the background and  a few people are standing in the calm sea.
Natural beauty of Olympos Beach

Both really special places.

And, on the not-so-noticeable side of things; it’s taken a long while but it’s now done and we’re happy! Previously, the photos on our Turkish recipes page were all different sizes.

They’re now all uniformly square!

Not the best season for the team – maybe because we’ve been non-existent supporters this season.

We’ll rectify that next season…

Anyway, here’s the league standings and the previous results.

The final match of the season is tomorrow (4th May), away to Erzincanspor.

Our little random section of news stories from around the country that have jumped out at us throughout April.

First of all, we’re back in Antalya’s Phaselis for this one.

Hadrian's Agora at the ancient ruins of Phaselis. The pathway is lined with pine trees on each side.
Good to know there are people looking out for Phaselis

Well done to the protestors and lawyers who rescued parts of of the area that were set to be developed for parking and other tourist facilities.

Phaselis is a protected area that is precious. Not only for its archaeological site but also its ecosystem.

We’re really not sure how anyone decides what on earth a ‘bluest shade of blue’ is but well done to the sea at Kaputaş Beach in the Antalya Province.

A view of a deserted sandy beach from above. A cliff face is to the right and then open sea ahead.
5th place for Kaputaş

The sea here took 5th place in the ‘bluest shade of blue’ stakes.

Pasqyra Beach in Albania took the top spot.

And if you love a good train journey, Turkish touristic rail travel is on the increase.

In April, a new route was introduced – it was the inaugural journey of the Mesopotamia Express.

The journey is 1,051 kilometres between Ankara and Diyarbakır. And stops are made in Kayseri, Malatya and Elazığ where you are given a few hours to dip into the area to sample local foods and visit famous sights.

Like we said, we’re going to be heading into the full vibes of summer. We might even make it to the beach, one day!

Let’s see what happens…

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Ryan

Monday 6th of May 2024

Do you mean Mesopotamia express train is Guney expressi train?

Turkey's For Life

Saturday 25th of May 2024

Hi Ryan, sorry for the late reply to your comment. No, this is a new touristic train service that will stop for a few hours in each place. The Güney Ekspresi is a regular train that goes all the way to Tatvan.

Heather

Friday 3rd of May 2024

Won't there be a problem with speedboats injuring the turtles

Turkey's For Life

Sunday 5th of May 2024

Hi Heather, think it's the same case for all boats re the turtles. The bay in Fethiye has all types of boats and sailing objects from cruise ships to superyachts and jet skis and everything in between.

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