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Best Times and Locations to Charter a Yacht in Turkey

Explore yacht chartering in Turkey, prime sailing locations and best times for an unforgettable sailing experience.

Welcome to your comprehensive guide to yacht chartering in the fascinating country of Turkey. Perfectly nestled at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, Turkey is a remarkable destination that seamlessly fuses history, culture, and natural beauty.

It’s a land where East meets West, a place that boasts beautiful coastlines, turquoise waters, and vibrant port cities teeming with life. This guide will introduce you to some of the prime sailing routes in Turkey, including Gocek, Finike, Demre, Kekova, Kas, and Fethiye, each with its unique charm and allure. Whether you’re an experienced sailor seeking new horizons or a first-time boater yearning for an unforgettable adventure, yacht chartering in Turkey is an unparalleled experience.

This guide will not only detail the mesmerizing sailing locations but will also provide valuable insights on planning your yacht charter in Turkey and offer essential tips to ensure a safe and enjoyable voyage. Immerse yourself in the journey of a lifetime, sailing the Turkish waters, and experiencing the diverse landscapes, the ancient history, and the inviting hospitality that this incredible country has to offer.

  • Unique Experience: Turkey offers a unique yacht chartering experience with its diverse landscapes, rich history, and vibrant culture, making it a top choice for sailors around the globe.
  • Prime Sailing Destinations: From the turquoise waters of Bodrum to the ancient ruins in Kas, Turkey’s prime sailing destinations offer an array of exciting exploration opportunities.
  • Effective Planning and Safety: Planning your sailing itinerary well and understanding the local customs and legal requirements can significantly enhance your yacht chartering experience in Turkey, ensuring a safe and enjoyable trip.

Why Choose Turkey for Yacht Chartering

Turkey is a truly unique sailing destination that offers a fascinating blend of diverse cultures, rich history, beautiful landscapes, and idyllic coastlines. Its strategic location at the confluence of the Aegean and Mediterranean Seas makes it a top choice for yacht chartering. Here’s why Turkey should be your next destination for a yacht charter adventure:

  1. Mesmerizing Coastal Cities: Turkey’s coastline is dotted with numerous captivating cities, each with its own character and charm. From the bustling harbor of Gocek known for its luxurious yachts and vibrant nightlife, to the historic city of Demre with its stunning Lycian tombs, there’s always something to explore.
  2. Spectacular Scenery: Turkey offers diverse landscapes from pristine white beaches to towering mountains. Sail to Kekova and witness the sunken city submerged under crystal-clear turquoise waters. The fascinating rock formations in Kas are another visual treat for nature enthusiasts.
  3. Rich History and Culture: Sailing in Turkey is like embarking on a journey through time. The ancient ruins in Fethiye, the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Demre, and the Byzantine history in Kas serve as open-air museums, offering a glimpse into the region’s illustrious past.
  4. Excellent Sailing Conditions: Turkey is blessed with a Mediterranean climate that offers sunny weather and steady winds throughout the yachting season. This makes it an ideal destination for sailors of all levels.
  5. Warm Hospitality: Turkish people are renowned for their hospitality. You will find locals always ready to lend a helping hand and share tales of their rich cultural heritage.
  6. Culinary Delights: Turkish cuisine is a delightful fusion of flavors from the East and West. While sailing, you can savor fresh seafood, sample local wines, and try famous Turkish delights.
  7. Flexible Itineraries: Whether you want a relaxed sail along the coast or an adventurous voyage across the seas, Turkey offers flexible itineraries to match your preferences. You can spend your days exploring hidden coves, diving in vibrant coral reefs, or simply soaking in the beauty of the Turkish coast.

Choosing Turkey for yacht chartering offers an enriching sailing holidays like no other. It’s not just about the sail but the entire journey – the beautiful vistas, the ancient relics, the delightful food, and the warm Turkish hospitality. Once you set sail in the enchanting Turkish waters, you’ll be longing to return for more.

An In-depth Look at Turkey’s Prime Sailing Destinations

Exploring the Turkish coast by yacht is an unforgettable experience. With its numerous idyllic locations, you’re in for a treat. Here are some of the prime sailing destinations that will make your yacht chartering in Turkey a memory to cherish.

1. Gocek

Gocek, renowned as the Turkish Riviera, is a paradise for yachting enthusiasts. The harbor town boasts six significant marinas and is a magnet for luxury yachts from around the globe. Nestled at the foot of pine-clad mountains, Gocek offers an impressive backdrop while you enjoy the crystal-clear waters. The town also hosts an annual Regatta, making it a go-to destination for sailing events.

See: Yachts for charter in Gocek.

2. Marmaris

Marmaris is one of the most popular yachting destinations in Turkey. Located where the Aegean and Mediterranean seas meet, it offers perfect sailing conditions and vibrant nightlife. Its well-equipped marina and picturesque old town add to its allure. Marmaris is also a gateway to many cruising routes.

See: Yachts for charter in Marmaris.

3. Bodrum

Bodrum, a gem of the Aegean coast, is known for its blend of ancient history and modern charm. It’s famous for its castle, amphitheater, and the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Bodrum’s nightlife is legendary, and its marina is often seen hosting mega-yachts.

See: Yachts for charter in Bodrum.

4. Fethiye

Fethiye is a vibrant city with well-preserved ancient sites, including the impressive rock tombs of ancient Telmessos. The city’s natural harbor is an excellent starting point for exploring the surrounding bays and coves. Fethiye is also the closest port to the beautiful Ölüdeniz lagoon.

See: Yachts for charter in Fethiye.

5. Kas

Kas is a charming, unspoiled town, nestled on the southernmost edge of Turkey’s Turquoise Coast. It’s famous for the ancient city of Antiphellos, Lycian rock tombs, and Hellenistic theatre. Its crystal-clear waters make it a popular spot for divers and snorkelers.

See: Yachts for charter in Kaş.

6. Demre

Demre, previously known as Myra, is steeped in history with a rich collection of ancient ruins and the Church of St. Nicholas. Sailors will love its quiet charm and clear, calm waters. It’s also close to Kekova, where the remains of a sunken city can be seen beneath the water’s surface.

See: Yachts for charter in Demre.

7. Antalya

Antalya is a bustling city known for its historic old town, Kaleiçi, and Düden Waterfalls. The city is surrounded by stunning beaches, and mountains, and is a short sail away from many ancient ruins. Antalya’s marina is one of the largest and most modern in Turkey, making it an ideal starting point for many sailing adventures.

See: Yachts for charter in Antalya.

8. Istanbul

No yachting trip in Turkey is complete without a visit to Istanbul, where the East meets the West. From the iconic Bosphorus Strait to historical sites such as Hagia Sophia and Topkapi Palace, Istanbul promises an enriching cultural experience. Its marinas can cater to all sizes of yachts, and it serves as an excellent gateway to the Black Sea.

See: Yachts for charter in İstanbul.

Each of these destinations offers a unique flavor of Turkey, promising an unforgettable yachting experience. Whether you are a history buff, nature enthusiast, or food lover, sailing in Turkey caters to all tastes and interests.

How to Plan Your Yacht Charter in Turkey

Taking a yacht trip around Turkey’s picturesque coastlines is the stuff of dreams. However, careful planning can make the difference between a good and a great experience. Here’s your guide on how to plan a yacht charter in Turkey.

Best Time of Year for Sailing in Turkey

The sailing season in Turkey starts in late April and runs through to October. The summer months, between May and September, are the most popular, boasting perfect sailing conditions with steady winds and little to no rain. However, if you prefer a quieter sailing experience, consider booking your yacht charter in the shoulder seasons – April to early June and late September to October. The weather is still pleasant, and the sailing destinations are less crowded.

Planning a Sailing Itinerary

Turkey’s coastline is home to a plethora of stunning destinations, each offering a unique mix of history, culture, and natural beauty. Your sailing itinerary should consider your interests, the duration of your charter, and the prevailing weather conditions. Engage with’s experienced holiday experts to plan an itinerary that maximizes your time while allowing flexibility to explore the many hidden gems along Turkey’s coast.

Hiring a Yacht: Tips and What to Expect

There’s a wide variety of yachts available for charter in Turkey, from motor yachts to sailing yachts and gulets, traditional wooden Turkish boats. When hiring a yacht, consider your budget, the number of people on board, and your preferred style of sailing.

Many charter companies offer both bareboat and crewed charter options. If you’re an experienced sailor, you might opt for a bareboat charter. If not, a crewed yacht charter could be a better choice, where a professional crew handles the navigation and maintenance of the yacht.

See: Crewed Yacht Charter Guide and Bareboat Yacht Charter Guide.

Booking your yacht charter well in advance, particularly for the high season, is advisable to ensure you secure your preferred yacht and itinerary. Be sure to check what’s included in the charter fee. Typically, this includes yacht rental, crew service, and insurance. Additional costs such as fuel, mooring fees, and provisions are usually covered by a separate ‘advance provisioning allowance’ (APA). You can see extras from the listing pages.

Lastly, ensure to have all necessary documentation in order, such as passports and sailing qualifications (for bareboat charters), before setting off on your Turkish sailing adventure.

Essential Tips for Sailing in Turkey

Sailing in Turkey can be a rewarding and unforgettable experience. However, it’s essential to be prepared and aware of the local customs, safety protocols, and legal requirements to ensure a smooth sailing adventure.

Safety Tips and Local Sailing Customs

Turkey is known for its turquoise waters, ancient ruins, and friendly locals. But before you set sail, familiarize yourself with local customs and traditions to ensure respectful interaction with local communities and other sailors.

When it comes to safety, always have a comprehensive plan. This includes ensuring that all crew members know their responsibilities, familiarizing themselves with the boat’s safety equipment, and having a detailed map of the local waters and the closest emergency facilities.

It’s also crucial to have a reliable weather forecast source. The Aegean and Mediterranean Seas generally offer ideal sailing conditions, but sudden storms can occur. Regularly check the weather updates and be prepared to alter your itinerary if necessary.

Respect for the environment is paramount. Ensure that you leave the places you visit as you found them, dispose of waste responsibly, and do not anchor in protected marine areas.

Legal Requirements and Paperwork

Before setting sail, ensure you have fulfilled all necessary legal obligations. For bareboat charters, you’ll need to have an appropriate sailing license recognized in Turkey and an International Certificate of Competence (ICC).

All sailors must have a valid passport, and depending on your nationality, a visa might be required. Additionally, the charter company will require a list of all passengers aboard, with full names, passport numbers, and dates of birth, before departure.

You’ll need to get a transit log, a document that records your vessel’s movements in Turkish waters. You can obtain this from the local port authority at the start of your charter.

Lastly, ensure you have adequate travel and medical insurance that covers sailing. Some charter companies might require proof of this before allowing you to charter their yacht.

Being well-prepared for your sailing trip in Turkey will help you make the most of your experience and leave you with memories to cherish for a lifetime.


Turkey, with its azure seas, vibrant culture, and historic wonders, offers a compelling allure for yacht chartering enthusiasts worldwide. Its diverse sailing regions provide a wealth of opportunities, whether you are seeking tranquil bays, bustling harbors, ancient ruins, or vibrant nightlife.

The natural beauty of Turkey’s coastline, with its hidden coves, sandy beaches, and pine-clad mountains, creates a picturesque setting for a sailing adventure. Additionally, the favorable sailing conditions, warm hospitality, and exquisite local cuisine further enhance the appeal of this enchanting country.

Planning your yacht charter in Turkey requires some preparation, but the reward is a journey of discovery through some of the most beautiful seascapes on Earth. Whether you are an experienced sailor or a novice, chartering a yacht in Turkey promises an unforgettable experience, filled with captivating scenery, rich history, and warm Turkish hospitality.

So hoist the sails and embark on an adventure of a lifetime along the captivating Turkish coastlines. Enjoy the freedom of the sea, explore the hidden gems of the Turkish Riviera, and immerse yourself in the rhythms of the Turkish way of life. Turkey truly is a paradise for sailors, and it’s waiting for you to discover it.

Continue reading: Choosing the Right Yacht for Sailing Holidays.


What are some must-visit places when sailing in Turkey?

Turkey boasts an array of stunning sailing destinations. These include the lush, pine-enclosed bays of Gocek, the ancient Lycian city of Demre, the sunken city of Kekova, the lively harbor town of Fethiye, the beautiful turquoise coves of Kas, and the serene port town of Finike. Each destination offers unique attractions and experiences, from historical explorations to vibrant local cultures and exquisite cuisines.

How can I visit the underwater ruins in Kekova?

The sunken city of Kekova can be best explored by a chartered yacht or a guided tour boat. Keep in mind that swimming and diving are generally not allowed to preserve the ancient ruins. However, sailing over these submerged ruins offers a breathtaking view of Lycian history beneath the clear turquoise waters.

What are the sailing conditions in various Turkish destinations like Gocek, Finike, Demre, Kekova, Kas, and Fethiye?

The sailing conditions in Turkey’s popular destinations are generally favorable throughout the year. Gocek and Fethiye offer sheltered bays and calm waters, perfect for beginners and leisurely sailing. Kas and Kekova are known for their steady summer winds, offering more thrilling sailing experiences. Finike and Demre, while being quieter destinations, provide a rich historical backdrop for your sailing adventures.

Can I sail in Turkey if I don’t have any previous sailing experience?

Yes, you can! Turkey offers numerous yacht chartering options that cater to both experienced sailors and novices. You can opt for a crewed yacht charter where a professional crew will handle all the sailing duties. There are also sailing schools that offer certified courses for beginners, so you can learn the basics before setting sail.