Sailing around the Turkish coastline has been featured as a touristic highlight for many visitors over the past 40 years. Long, pleasant summers coupled with an extensive array of coves and beaches to explore, has continued to attract tourists from around the world for a holiday with a difference.
Being surrounded by four seas, Turkey is ideally positioned for extensive growth for yachting tourism. Presently the most popular area for yachting in Turkey is around the Mediterranean and Aegean coastlines, mainly due to the facilities in place. While these coastlines will continue to grow in the coming years with new marinas and facilities being constructed, the Black Sea coast is also set for expansion.
With several of Europe’s waterways connecting directly to the Danube and into the Black Sea, it is now possible to sail directly from North Europe, through the continent and into the Black Sea Coast. Also expected to assist the nautical tourism of other countries sharing the Black Sea coastline including Bulgaria, Ukraine, Romania, Georgia and Russia, the national and foreign investment aimed at Turkish yachting will enable the country a beneficial head start.
At present, Turkey features 22 marinas along the Aegean and Mediterranean coastlines. An additional 12 marinas are currently in the planning or construction stages, having received financing from local and foreign investors. The additional financial revenue gained from these new marinas will be a huge boost to Turkey’s economy.
Tourists have long been attracted to the fixed or chartered tours of the traditional Turkish Gullet yachts, designed to offer tours in a comfortable environment with a blend of tradition. Benefits of the chartered tours enable passengers to have no set destination, simply enjoying all the benefits Turkey’s 8,300km coastline has to offer.
Far from being confined to the boat throughout the tours, Turkey’s coastline offers a wealth of attractions both in the water and out. Swimming in the calm turquoise waters, snorkelling, scuba diving and even spear fishing amongst sunken cities can be enjoyed. On land, visitors can also immerse themselves in the fascinating cultural history and local traditions of the country.
Set to become the nucleus of yachting in the Mediterranean, Turkey has the advantage of increasing investment and resource input for the growth of the industry. Marinas in Kusadasi are currently the best equipped in the country, set to be rivalled by the new installation in Istanbul.
The growth of yachting tourism in the popular Mediterranean and Aegean coastlines, coupled with new major projects along the Sea of Marmara and the planned expansion of ports and marinas along the Black Sea coastline, will all assist in converting Turkish yachting into a major tourism boost for the country.