Inspirational sailing yacht charters in Turkey
A luxury yacht charter in Turkey places you at the heart of the Aegean, Black and Mediterranean seas. Bodrum might be the commercial hub, but Turkey’s ‘turquoise coast’ delivers glistening inlets, hidden coves and exotic sailing conditions. Encompassing the provinces of Antalya and Muğla, with Aydın, southern İzmir and western Mersin sitting on the cusp, its marine-rich waters are peppered with ancient ruins best accessed by boat. Paired with seafood mezzes, vibrant bazaars and remote sandy beaches, Turkey’s shores bring an effervescent liveliness to a serene sailing set-up.
Where to visit on a sailing yacht charter
As far as off-the-beaten-track anchorages go, Akyarlar Bay in Turgutreis takes top billing. Those wishing to sight archaeological ruins should head to nearby Gemiler Island – or Boat Island - which is strewn with ruins and artefacts. While there, a trip to Butterfly Valley nature reserve, where a casual swim in the azure bay is typically accompanied by a cloud of brightly coloured butterflies, is memorable, as is a trip to the ruined city of Letoon.
The yachting hub of Göcek is prized for its authentic Turkish charm and natural beauty. Located in the Muğla Province, the national park is made up of picturesque coves set against a backdrop of pine forests and soaring mountains. Underneath the water’s surface, the ancient ruins of Kalimce can still be seen. A sailing holiday to Göcek will undoubtedly include a stop off at superyacht marina, D-Marin, which is built upon one of Turkey’s safest natural harbours.
The resort town of Marmaris enjoys pebbly beaches and a long seafront promenade. By day its beach clubs are awash with families and bathers. By night, the streets come alive with the sound of tuns being spun by international DJs. Its music venues are rated as some of the best things to do in Marmaris, with Club Budha Bar and Club Areena being two standout examples of where top musicians play live every night.
The small, enclosed natural harbour of Fethiye offers boats of all sizes a pretty anchorage that is protected from the Lodos, the strong south-westerly wind that blows across Turkey all year round. It makes the port city a favourite with sailing yachts, while the area’s blue waters and numerous rock tombs, including the 4th-century Tomb of Amyntas carved into cliffs above the town, make it a popular spot for lovers of exploration.
More than simply a popular destination to begin or end a yacht charter in Turkey, Bodrum a shipbuilding centre with an emerging food scene. If crowds aren’t your thing, avoid Bar Street, (as Cumhuriyet Street is fondly known) which is a literal mile-long street flooded with clubs, and instead head for Bodrum bay on the south side of the Bodrum peninsula. Once a centre of commerce, today it’s cobble-street villages and landmark castle are what draw admiration.
Lined with palm trees and golden sands, the coastal town of Cesme – meaning water, derived from the multiple sources of water in the area - overlooks the shimmering Aegean Sea. Making the most of its year-round sun and featuring a castle in the heart of the town, it’s a serene and culture-filled stop off on a Turkish sailing itinerary.
Sailing yachts available for charter
Turkey enjoys a rich and varied maritime history. The Port of Istanbul was once used for sea-borne trade during the Ottoman period, and the country’s fine craftsmanship came to the fore with the construction of the Turkish gulet, a traditional two or three-masted wooden sailing boat. Today, though gulets still pepper the seas, a sailing yacht charter will typically take in some of the finest superyachts on the charter market today, each with a distinctive story to tell.
The MALTESE FALCON offers one of the most luxurious sailing yacht charters on the market. At 88m, the Perini Navi-built boat is instantly recognisable for its three-masted carbon fibre DynaRig. The dramatic sail plan can be set in around six minutes, unleashed by an excellent crew of 18. With a huge range of watertoys and the biggest outdoor cinema on any yacht (projected onto the lower sail) it’s a sailing experience of a lifetime.
A classic sailing yacht from the drawing boards of Hoek Design, the 38.7m ATALANTE combines the elegant aesthetics of the 1930s with a modern hull configuration to achieve superb sailing performance. The award-winning yacht delivers a smooth sailing performance aided by a carbon mast, rigging and 3Di sails, while on the interior, a range of classic details await.
One of the most popular sailing yachts on the charter market, PARSIFAL III combines performance with comfort. Fresh from a 2021 refit and enjoying a jacuzzi on the flybridge, Parsifal provides all the deck space to soak up the sun while casually hitting exhilarating speeds of up to 18 knots when moving along under full sail.