After a busy weekend it was time for a comparatively relaxing day so we caught the bus from the dolmus station in Fethiye to Olu Deniz (5TL each way each I think). I remember seeing the aerial view of the lagoon here many years ago in brochures and thought at some point we must go but at that point I was still uneasy about Turkey's human rights record (and admittedly still had scary memories of the film 'Midnight Express!). I also loved Greece and felt a bit disloyal at harbouring such thoughts but as relationships improved between the two nations I felt much more comfortable with the idea of going to Turkey.
The bus goes through Ovacik and Hisaronu the latter of which looked particularly bit tacky (though people have told us it is fine when you get away from the main street and it would be a better base for walking than Calis due to its proximity to various trails - unfortunately due to my partners knee problems we can't do the amount of walking we used to do)
The bus stops right by the beach and it is an easy walk along to the protected part of the lagoon - there is a small entry fee but the area between the sea and the 'dead sea' is nicely landscaped and there are stunning views up to the mountains - there is a café on the beach - large cans of beer were 7.50TL I think and it is a very pleasant spot to while away an hour. Afterwards we walked round to the other side of the dead sea but this involves walking along a road with no views and when we got there it seemed that all the beach areas belonged to beach clubs and to be honest the view wasn't that interesting (though there is sand for those who hate shingle!) so we didn't linger. The resort part of Olu Deniz didn't look particularly attractive so we headed back to Calis.
I can't remember where we eat that night but I dare say it will come back to me!
The following day (my birthday) we planned to go up to Umzulu for an hour or so but for once our friendly assistant at the dolmus station by the mosque had let us down. He had (correctly) told us to go to the other minibus station behind the petrol station where the one way system starts but (incorrectly) told us the buses ran on the hour and half hour - they didn't and we had just missed the 1045 bus - luckily I remembered the bus to Kabak ran at 11am and would be passing shortly so we got that instead (6.5TL each way each) This follows the route to Olu Deniz then drives along fabulous section of road with huge drops and great views. We had read about the Olive Garden here and found the path down to it just a few yards back from the bus stop - a steep drop but not too far. We were surprised to find the place deserted and it stayed that way apart from us until just before we left two hours later. The views from here were lovely and it was a very relaxing place to chill out. The bus returns at 3.30pm and the views are even better on the way back. As with any times on the less frequent routes do check with the drivers as they are likely to change as the seasons change.
There could be no other venue for my birthday meal that night than the Mosaik and we were made particularly welcome on what was to be our last visit.
The next day we got to Umzulu - about 30 minutes inland from Fethiye (4TL each each way). A nice country village with some interesting old houses and new development mainly around the edges. From here you can walk to Cadianda historical site but it was too far for us at the moment. We only spent an hour there but it was enough to get the feel of the village and have a quick drink - no beer at the café but I did enjoy the orange juice!!!
A lazy afternoon followed as it had turned rather dull and the meal that night was at the Merhaba again - chicken casserole which was ok but a bit too salty for me and not as good as those I had had at the Mozaik or the music tents.
Nearly there - just two days to go........