Day Trip to Turkey

During our cruise to the Greek islands this summer, Travis and I had a day trip to Turkey. Did you know that most of Turkey is actually in Asia? There’s only a small part of Turkey that’s in Europe. I had NO IDEA! Istanbul is split into Europe and Asia by the Bosphorus Strait. I had no idea that this is where part of the Europe/Asia border is until Travis and I went on our day trip to Turkey and we were told that we’re actually in Asia now! I thought this was really cool. Travis didn’t seem to care too much [insert confused emoji here]. Here are some educational maps to show you what I mean:

Istanbul and Bosphorus Strait Bosphorus Strait


Anyway, back to our day trip.

Our cruise ship stopped at a Turkish resort town called Marmaris. Travis and I didn’t spend time on the beach though. We had a full day planned to visit two ancient cities: Dalyan and Kaunos. First though, Travis had woken me up at 5 am (because he couldn’t sleep) and asked me to go watch the sunrise with him. I wasn’t mad at him for it – it was beautiful!

First Stop

After the sunrise and breakfast, we took a bus to the Dalyan River. We got on a Turkish boat and went to see the ancient rock tombs that are carved into the cliffs right on the edge of the River. The tombs are where the kings of the ancient city of Kaunos are buried. Who knows what kind of treasure is inside? Actually, nothing is probably left because people in the past have stolen the treasures. The tombs are still there though, for us to marvel at.

Kings Tombs on Dalyan River

Kings Rock Tombs in Turkey

There are actually little tiny tombs, more like holes carved into the rock, where the poorer people were buried. Some are right next to the kings’ tombs and the rest are scattered around. Only the kings could afford to pay for dramatic tombs for themselves, no surprise there.

Rock Tombs on Dalyan River in Turkey

Next: Kaunos

After staring at the tombs, we continued on the Dalyan River to visit the Roman ruins in Kaunos. This area had all kinds of ruins: a theatre, a temple, Roman baths, and a basilica.

Look at the rock chairs that important people used to sit on in the theatre!

Row of Chairs in Roman Theatre in Kaunos Turkey

Kate at the Roman Theatre in Kaunos Turkey

Last Stop: Turkish Lunch

Next, we continued our day trip with a Turkish lunch at a restaurant right on the Dalyan River. I didn’t take a photo of my lunch, but it included Turkish appetizers and the main course was a whole sea bream, which is a type of fish, if you didn’t know. When I say whole, I mean whole, with the head, tail, and all the bones inside. I have no issues eating a fish like this, having grown up in Russia (but I won’t go into what I ate in Russia right now). But Travis and a few other Americans were NOT going to eat a fish like this. Thankfully, rather than going hungry, the restaurant had a chicken course prepared for them. Travis – you missed out! The sea bream was delicious!

Lunch on Dalyan River in Turkey

After lunch, we took the boat all the way back to where we started, then back on the bus, and back to the cruise ship. This was one of my favorite days during the cruise!

Dalyan River in Turkey