No holiday to the Fethiye area is complete without venturing onto and into the warm, turquoise Aegean/Mediterranean sea. In our opinion one of the nicest ways to experience it is to take a day trip on one of the family run boats operated from Calis.
Last year we wrote about the day boat trips which run from the water taxi jetty near the bridge in Çalış, you can read that article here if you missed it first time around.
We recently took the first trip of 2012 and some things have changed, but for the better.
The Çalış boats are all members of a co-operative which sets prices and runs the water taxi service, as well as the day boat trips.
Better Boats Same Great Day Out
There are 25 boats in the co-op and now 9 of them are the new larger size, which can take a maximum of 27 passengers instead of the 12 which is the limit for the older, smaller boats.
Effectively the larger boats have gained little in length, but are significantly wider, which makes it much easier to move around on the boat.
We went out again with Aliş, owner of one of four new boats added to the fleet this season, and an extremely proud owner. His mother is still producing wonderful food from her larger, well equipped kitchen and his father is still Chair of the Co-op.
The father told us how each Monday one of the boats takes a load of volunteers out to a beach or island to clean up rubbish. A Çalış Boat Co-op activity that we haven’t seen reported anywhere.
At Last – Ice Cream at Realistic Prices
No doubt many readers will have encountered the ice cream boats when out on the water, with their highly inflated prices.
During the winter the Co-op invited the ice cream boat operator selling in the bays they use, to a meeting to discuss pricing.
At the end of last season the ice cream boat men were asking 7 or even 8TL for a Magnum.
The Co-op boat operators realised their customers thought this was way too high, so the ice cream boat man was asked to lower his price to 5TL.
He refused, so this season each boat has its own ice cream fridge with a range of ice creams at 5TL, which we think is fair when you are buying it at sea and miles from a shop.
Sunset Trips Too
The price of a day trip has risen to 35TL but there are now also sunset cruises at 25TL per person.
You leave at 19.00, swim, watch the sunset, eat dinner and then dance on the new wider deck until you want to come home.
Aliş told us he has already had groups partying past midnight, and they will do a sunset cruise for a minimum of ten.
Drinks prices seem to be the same as last year so if you fancy a sunset cruise with a group of friends phone Aliş on 0506 557 0718, or call into the office by the bridge in Çalış and book.
Private Hire Available
It seems the 27 maximum passenger load is rarely reached – there were 22 on our boat.
And if you fancy an older boat that only takes 12 the option is still available, although you will still pay 35TL per person as that is the price fixed by the Co-op for this season.
With the current high exchange rate, we still think it’s a great value day out.