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Sleeping Under The Mediterranean Night Sky

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When was the last time you slept on deck of a Phoenician style wooden schooner under the stars anchored in a quiet cove on the Mediterranean? The best seasons to travel in Turkey are spring and fall. The late summer air is warm and sky clear so most of us take our warm leopard blankets (no, Anne didn't bring them, they just happened to be part of the bedding provided on board) up top to sleep on the thick sun mattresses covering much of the deck.  Gulets are built in Turkey with a wide beam designed for space and comfort. Our vessel, the Cafeoglu is 130' with a capacity for 20 passengers for our group of 17, which is bigger than the Cevri IIand Cevri Kaptan (12 passengers) that we normally use and I spotted anchored together near us one day so I snapped this picture of them side by side. (pictured at bottom)

 My favorite spot on board is to stand out on the bow sprint cruising through the warm air, white waves splashing off the sleek mahogany hull as it cuts its way through glassy blue waters. One morning I was there by myself when I noticed dolphin ahead. I signaled to the captain and he alerted everyone and by the time they made it to the bow the porpoise were surfing our wake just a few feet below us. 
My favorite anchorage was our first morning we awoke on board at Simena Cove. Several of us arose at dawn to watch the sunrise over the channel of sea between two spits of land covered in ancient ruins that kept the water glassy smooth reflecting the orange and red like a mirror image of the sky. 

Since I slept in my bathing suit and light t-shirt anyway, I dove off the bow feeling no difference between the warm dawn air and languid sea as I submerged, and then burst up into the air alive and energized in a sustained butterfly stroke in the glassy horizon between astrological elements. Who else dove in these waters in September to feel what I felt, and from what vessels, in what lifetime and millennia? There's great diving or jumping from several vantage points, but the captain quickly put the cabash on diving from the top of the upper deck!

 All gulets we use have double cabins configured with double or twin beds each with a private bath and shower with hot water, and air-conditioning as needed during the day and at bedtime. The AC can't run after 10 PM at night so you open your portholes for air or move up on deck if it happens to be very warm. On our voyage, several members of our group were perfectly comfortable in their cabins all night.  All the boats are equipped with a kayak, mask/snorkel/fins, some have windsurfer or paddleboards, sun awnings with deck mattress for napping or sunning, indoor and outdoor dining areas, and convenient ladders for easy access in and out of the water including a fresh water hose to rise off the salty seawater.


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