Tuesday, September 27, 2022

2022 Greece and Turkey - Day #11 - Cesme

Best of Cesme
Top 3 Reasons To Book
  • Ildiri, a quiet seaside village and a National Heritage Site
  • Cesme Castle with six towers and a moat on three sides
  • The Cesme Peninsula's Ottoman Cakabey Monument
The Cesme Peninsula is one of Turkey's most beautiful stretches of coastline, surrounded by clear blue seas, with landscapes of cultivated fields of aniseed, sesame and artichokes dotted wth fig and gum trees. Your day will begin with a photo opportunity at the famous Cakabey Monument, erected in honor of one of the admirals of the Ottoman Navy.

Next you will visit Ildiri, a quiet seaside village 12 miles northeast of Cesme. Excavations here have shown that the site has been settled since the early Bronze Age, and as a result the area around the village has been declared a National Heritage Site. The walls around the ancient city are still standing, and exceptionally beautiful Hellenistic floor mosaics can still be seen in one of the buildings.

Stop for photos at the famous Alacati Bay -- a big name in the world of windsurfing and kitesurfing -- with its crystal-clear water and steady, year-round winds.

Head to Dalyan for a delicious lunch of Turkish specialties and seafood.

You will visit Cesme Castle -- the focal point of Cesme town. An imposing site with its six towers and a moat on three sides, the castle is guarded by a statue of Cezayirli Gazi Hasan Pasha -- one of the naval commanders of the Battle of Cesme. Pasha is depicted caressing his famous pet lion and facing the Town Square.
Repeat. Up early, I wandered up to the Observation Bar to drink coffee, enjoy the sunrise, watch the Seabourn Encore sail into port and work on the blog.

With Sharon moving slowly, I ran up to the Colonnade and grabbed some breakfast. I brought her back a plate of food.

We took the Best of Çeşme excursion. It included: the peninsula's Ottoman Cakabey Monument; a walking tour of Ildiri, a quiet seaside village and a National Heritage Site; a stop at Alacati Bay famous for windsurfing and kitesurfing; a very nice lunch of branzino in Dalyan and; the Çeşme Castle. At lunch, we sat with a group of doctors (Lindy and Laraine, Judy and Bob).

I titled this "the excursion of too much driving." We drove around the countryside with very small payoffs at each stop. At more than six and a half hours, it was also one of the longer days. This has been my least favorite excursions; I grade it a "B-".

Apparently, this is a summer resort area. There were miles and miles of summer homes with very few people around.

Although it was a little breezy, we finished the day with a very nice dinner at the Earth & Ocean at the Patio. For starters, Sharon had Yellowtail Sashimi [pickled vegetables, micro herbs, citrus dressing], while I had Scallops Basquaise [roasted garlic, pine. nuts, tomatoliguri olive confit, melba toast]. We both had Asian Style Rotisserie Duck BBQ Flavor [wok fire bok choy, Japanese fried rice, pulm sauce] for the entree.

With Sharon still feeling under the weather, we crashed very early.

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