Turkey Discussion Forum

Discussions regarding holidays in Turkey.
Hi, I'm doing my 17th gulet cruise this year! I've used the "big" operators such as First choice and Thomas Cook but then found a very small company called Blue Cruise (based on London) run by a Turk. We find with this company we don't stay in harbor even on arrival or last evening (we sail in on the morning of departure). They do the Bodrum end and also go from Gocek and Marmaris as well as Fethiye. I suggest you take a look at their web site and then give them a call. It's him, his wife and I think his daughter. They have all sailed on the gulets they charter and are very knowledgeable and would be very willing to talk you through the options. They may be a bit more expensive though I'm not sure what TC and FC are costing these days. We are going this year with 4 other couples we met last year and the year before and all of us love them. The bad reviews in my opinion are people not knowing what it is they are booking and then being disappointed or not being willing to mix with other passengers (only had 2 experiences of this type in 17 hols).

Here's the link to Blue Cruise http://www.bluecruise.co.uk/

By the way I'm not connected to them in any way, I just really find them the best to book with.

Previously have used Tapestry Holidays and they were quite good but they went bust a couple of years back and left and lot of people without holidays. They were ABTA but people we knew were 2 days from departure and couldn't afford to rebook until they got their money back. They are trading again but the trust is gone for me. Also Exclusive Escapes do some good gulets but they are truly expensive.
I agree with Shelagh, I have used blue cruise and found them excellent. I am still guleting but being single I go with singles operators which is obviously not what you are looking for. If I was in a couple I would use blue cruise again. The service was top notch and I can compare the whole experience with all my other gulet holidays (7 so far) and can say the crew and gulet itself were the best I have come across. Standards just that touch higher in all aspects and they even burned a CD of all the music they had played whilst we were onboard for us to take home!

Another one which has good reports is Anatolian Sky.
Hi ,My husband and I have always wanted to go on a gulet cruise ,do you know what the average age would be of people who go? Or is it always mixed?
Previously on the cruise there were a mix of people from 18 to 50 and it just worked somehow.Must say that the majority was older and maybe that is why things "gelled" so well.

Do it,you will not regret it,it is great fun.

We've had all ages from 25 to 75 and it just works! You know you are in close quarters so you go prepared to rub along. We've made great friends who we keep in touch with from years back. This year we are going as a gang of people who we met in 2009 & 2009. Try it, you won't regret it
Out of interest what is a typical fortnight on a gulet cruise like? If anybody has the time or inclination to post about a typical gulet holiday I'd be interested to read it. I've only ever been on a gulet for a day's sailing and really enjoyed it but did find myself swaying a bit for a few hours once back on dry land :rofl

I don't think I'd be able to cope for a week or fortnight on the boat- do you get off onto the shore often?
Thanks Shelagh and Desertmom for the info, we have been thinking of doing this for years as we always go on lots of boat trips in Turkey and love them.
We have already booked for Icmeler and Dalyan for sept this year but I've put Blue cruises on my bookmarks and will definatly go on one next year ..thanks
Shirley, Blue Cruise do fortnight trips but most people tend to opt for one week with perhaps a week on land before or after.

It's basically a very chilled out holiday. There tend to be a couple of stops during the week at a port (this will probably include the overnights on first and last night though, so think of that plus one in the middle of the trip) with the other nights being in small, secluded bays. You basically make your own entertainment so that might be just chatting, or dancing to CDs you've brought along, having a quiz or playing some games. Those who are seasoned travellers will probably be armed with some things to occupy the evenings but it's all about making your own entertainment, unless you happen to have a crew member on board who likes to entertain!

The food is local, fresh, tasty and plentiful and will include breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner.

If you think of the day trips but vastly reduce the numbers it's like that but with a small group who you get to know very quickly. Laughing, drinking, eating, swimming, kayaking, snorkelling, chatting and no worrying about what to wear or how your hair is. Bliss.
yes,this is exactly what the blue cruise is like.When you charter your own gulet you obviously have friends or family around you and you will visit and relax.With cabin charter I have found that it is quiet in the evening.We use to play boardgames and just relax.This is really all about doing nothing for a whole week.We swim and snorkel a lot and are usually very tired at night.

Our year is very busy and super fast so a week where talking is optional and doing nothing is the order of the day while on the beautiful water (or in the water) is absolutely fantastic for us.

Booking on a gulet that will have a shade canvas over the sunbeds and is not to old and basically clean is the challenge now as I have no Idea who to go with.We have already booked our flights by the way...lol
I use Blue Cruise in London. Owned by a great Turkish guy. Very helpful & knowledgeable. Will do gilet only if you wish.
Would like to do a gulet cruise next year for my friend's 50th. Blue Cruises are mentioned a lot and I have had a look at their website which is very impressive but I am finding it a bit confusing. Do you have to book your own flights, tansfers etc and which size gulet do others consider would be riight to get a good mix of people, there will be 4 of us.

We are off to Fethiye on Friday. Is there any gulet companies that I could check out while I am there as we will be in the harbour booking some day trips.
Blue cruise offer the whole package which includes full board, flights and transfers. Most boats are 8 cabins (16 people). You would book 2 cabins for the four of you. You only have to pay for your drinks on board once there. I find blue cruise to be one of the best. They do basic, deluxe or luxury gulets - we always have the deluxe these are really good these days with air con early evenings, good bathrooms compared to what was available in1996 when we first started. Thomas Cook do some which aren't bad then Teresa Exclusive Escapes which are fab but very expensive. If you ring Blue Criise they would be happy to talk to you about any and all aspects of this type of holiday.
One other thing if you go to the harbour in Fethiye look out for Blue cruise banner on the gangplanks of boats such as Prenses Selin & Prenses Lila - probably there on Mondays and Baba Veli 7 & 8, Blue Cruise gulet possibly Thurs or Fri. You could ask the passengers for an insiders point of view.
I sent two emails to Blue cruise asking for a price of a cruise and stay holiday and didn't get a reply. do they stilldo cabin charters?

We have ended up booking a 3night/four day cruise through Carol and Tayfun, which I since found out is actually with V-Go.

We met a group of Swedish tourists and they spoke in detail about what a Gulet can offer. The trick seems to be making sure the company you are in is right. We will probably go with another large group booking. Hubby and I are currently looking at a company called Anatolian Sky for next year. First impressions are encouraging.

Blue Cruise is owned by Mr & Mrs Pekel. they have been in Turkey for the past week or so on business and are probably behind with the emails. They are a very small company but in my opinion, offer the best value and best boats. As I said previously, Exclusive Escapes are good but very expensive, Thomas Cook are fine but older boats these days. First Choice again are older boats. If you like doing DIY you can book many boats direct and then get your own flights. The majority of them will offer to arrange airport transfers at reasonable prices. However I prefer to do a package, especially given the recent ash cloud fiasco. You just don't know what you are getting and I've heard some real horror stories - just do a search for Gulets on some of the other forums - you'll see what I mean.
I would suggest you ring Blue Cruise and ask a few questions, get their brochure and then compare what everyone else have to offer. We are off soon for 2 weeks with Blue Cruise on the Baba Veli 8 which we got for £1,099 per person. There are 5 couples who all met in the last two years on gulet holidays and have decided to go together this year. Blue Cruise were fantastic in sorting this out for us as individual bookings. Go on - talk to them, Margaret is very good with her knowledge of gulets as has been on several but never lets on she is the owner of Blue Cruise, to all intents she's just another passenger. [/i]
We have done Anatolian Sky and the boat was ok, our problem was some seriously horrid passengers who go every year so we've avoided using them to avoid meeting said passengers again.

Don't let that put you off though. We are off on our 17th 2 week gulet holiday soon and we've only experienced this type of issue twice and when you consider most people do one week, that is 34 different sets of passengers.

The vast majority of passengers are on board with the idea of enjoying themselves, meeting new people and rubbing along with everyone. We'd had judges, lorry drivers, pilots, Special Branch, Defence Attaches, shop assistants. We've had posh people (Oliver Reed's brother once - great guy, as were his wife and friends) working class, professionals, retired, different nationalities, young and old and you know what - we all look the same in our swimwear and we all want to enjoy our holidays.

You can PM me if you have any queries you don't feel you can ask publicly.
Sorry, keep seeing more questions in the posts. Blue Cruise will do cabin charters and on a gulet only basis. I know one woman who always books her own flights and just pays Blue Cruise for the cabin. If you want to book an 8 cabin gulet on a sole charter then I do know the people who own the Prenses Lila (the best boat ever) and operate the Selin on behalf on their brother and the English couple who jointly own it. Can supply email if you are serious about it. Blue Cruise charter both these boats but they are not often on offer for cabin charter.

So the answer is yes Blue Cruise still do cabin charters - they obviously prefer it if you book the whole gulet but they do do cabins as certain times of the year - usually June & September. Let them know you are seriously considering it and they will be happy to discuss things with you.
I chartered gulet in Croatia in july of 2019. Me, my wife and 4 kids really enjoyed on our trip across the Adriatic sea. There is a lot of things to see in croatia, medieval cities, best food in entire universe and very kind people.. If you can not decide between Croatia or some other country i hope this post will also help you. We booked gulet for us through tourist agency GuletHoliday.com located in city of split, in the same city we started and finished our 7 day trip. From my expirence i can really reccomend them, they are responding very fast and they are very knowledable about all their boats and ports in Croatia generally. Also Marija - she was in charge for us, is very polite and she is available even in midnight if you need her.
With gulet itself everithing went well, crew was very kind and we really enjojed.
Here is link for web page for Gulet Holiday: https://guletholiday.com/
  • Edited by Mateo101 2020-02-10 12:34:53
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