Ok, there were no hoes (that I saw) but there were certainly lots of boats…
If you know someone who’s been to Turkey on a package holiday from the UK, chances are they’ve been to or at least heard of Dalyan. Situated near the popular coastal tourist towns of Marmaris and Bodrum, it’s basically club 45-70, where day trip prices are listed in pounds and the ‘local’ merchants stock the widest variety of knockoff football shirts you could never want. One bustling stall on the main street eloquently advertised their merchandise as “Cheaper than Primark and even cheaper than ASDA!” well, you can’t argue with that if it’s genuine tat you’re looking for.
Despite the stigma, we stayed two nights at Dalyan Camping and had a great time for a few reasons.
1. It was really cheap! Food, especially, day trips and everything else was around half the price of elsewhere we had been in Turkey.
2. We went on a great value, 8 hour, boat trip. There is only one tour company in Dalyan with booking kiosks everywhere. We booked through our campsite for the basic day trip which was a river cruise to an amazing island beach, a buffet lunch, a few hours at the natural mud baths, a lake swim and great views of the ancient cliffside tombs. Amazing value for €10 each if you ask me!
3. THE MUD BATHS! They have mud baths and thermal pools all over this part of the world but we really enjoyed this one. Entry was around €3 euros per person including changing rooms and lockers. There were four different types of natural mud, three of which were infused with specific essential oils to aid various ailments. Slathering on the mud and drying in the sun was hilarious… until it was time to be hosed down with freezing cold water for ten minutes while we attempted to chip it off! Our skin really did feel amazing after the baths and the warm thermal pool was the perfect way to finish the experience.
4. We met some other bikers at the campsite. Also, it was full of working class British gents (drinking away their sunset years) who were all far too excited to see two home-grown Triumph Bonnies cruising about town. “you’re a long way form home” and “back in my day…” were common opening lines for brief and predictable conversation.
5. Rich got a new hair style which he was way too happy with… I didn’t have the heart to tell him that the ‘man plait’ probably isn’t a trend that will catch on any time soon. All in all, we enjoyed our day in Dalyan, if only for the beaching and mud bathing. I have to say the town is not my scene at all and I kind of wished that I had some sort of neon sign or t-shirt that said “I’m only riding through… on my motorbike” just to distinguish us from the other brits. Having said that, I do feel that not being eligible for a pensioners bus pass set us apart enough.
Would you go to Dalyan? What are your thoughts on tourist towns?