Turkey: Myra and On a boat in the Mediterranean

Where's my seat?I lied, we had one more historic site in store for us. We stopped just south of Demre, in the ancient city of Myra to visit the ruins of a large Lycian amphitheater. Myra’s Greco-Roman theatre is the largest theatre in Lycia. Mark, with ticket in hand, made to look for his seat amongst the 38 rows of stone seats in this large semi-circular stadium like theater. Mark and I seemed to be the only ones participating in a “wave” in the stands.

On the mountain side were numerous elaborate tomb facades carved above and around the theater into the cliff face. These are Lycian house tombs, intended to be houses for the dead. Because of the plague that swept through Anatolia in the 6th century (Myra lost one-third of its population to it in 542-3 AD), Muslim raids, flooding and earthquakes, Myra was mostly abandoned by the 11th century.

Lycian tombs carved into cliffWe hopped back on the bus and started the drive on the very twisty and winding road right along the coastline to get to boat. We saw so many inviting crystal clear blue coves! Hinting at what was to come.

In the later part of the afternoon we boarded our boat, the Aya Nicola 1 and were on our way to several days filled with swimming and snorkeling in the Mediterranean, lounging, chatting with friends, eating, all and all doing nothing but relaxing :)

Dinner tonight involved fresh whole fish, it was tasty, but still creeped me out, that problem I have with eating things that look like the thing that they are. I don’t like to have to dissect my food to eat it.

The boat parked for the night in a cove where similarly sized boats were scattered. We went for a swim, the water marbled in temperature, ribbons of warm and cool water flowing past us. The water of the Mediterranean is extra salty.

Snorkeling MarkAfter dark Mark went for a night time swim, once in the water he realized he was swimming amongst a cloud of bioluminescent biota. Swishing his arms and legs caused a glow, moving his fingers after sitting still caused tiny sparks to fly from his finger tips. I would have hopped in, but I was too cold already. I couldn’t imagine getting wet when the night air was that cool. A couple other people hopped in too to experience the glow.

The rest of us remained on deck under the perfectly clear night sky filled with stars. We were laying on the deck staring at the bright Milky Way and counting the meteorites that streaked across the sky.

In our peaceful bubble, little did we know, back in the capitol Ankara, on the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, a terrorist bombing in the city was being foiled.