Explore the best of sailing in Turkey

Once you experience a sailing holiday in Turkey on the southwest coast – appropriately nicknamed the ‘Turquoise Coast’ – you’ll develop a lifelong passion for this special place. Discover the incomparable beauty of the Mediterranean and Aegean Seas on your Turkey yacht charter as you sail past the country’s stunning coast where remains of ancient civilizations testify the country’s importance as the meeting point between east and west. 

Highlights
  • Crystal clear waters and pristine beaches
  • Lively markets and historic villages
  • Ancient ruins and cultural sites
Quick Info

Airports
Istanbul, Ankara, Antalya, Izmir, Bodrum, and Dalaman

Boat base locations
Istanbul, Bodrum, Dalaman, Göcek

Tips
Butterfly valley, bustling capital of Istanbul, snorkelling in Hidayet Bay

Best time to sail
May – October

Currency
Turkish Lira

Language spoken
Turkish

Explore cities in Turkey

Things to do and see when sailing in Turkey

turkey

Turkey’s 8,400 kilometre coastline makes it a haven for sailing, while its cultural heritage, historic charm and stunning beauty add even more reasons to the list of why you should be sailing in Turkey. When you book your saliling holiday Turkey, you can access countless pristine beaches, incredible diving spots, historic ruins, and ancient sites located along the coast. And while surely there is nothing better than gazing out to the dazzling sea while sailing along the Turkish Riviera, visiting some of Turkey’s coastal restaurants and bars is a must. 

Another experience not to miss when you go on a sailing trip in Turkey is the Pamukkale thermal baths, which draw people from all over the world. Located in the Denizli Province of southwestern Turkey, Pamukalle, meaning ‘cotton castle’ in Turkish, contains stunning natural hot springs that tourists can bathe in all year round.

A sailing holiday on a gulet in Turkey is one of the best ways to explore the country and its spectacular coastline at your own leisurely pace. Bodrum, Dalaman, Marmaris Fethiye, and Göcek are just some of the popular sailing destinations in Turkey. Whatever location you choose, you can look forward to a memorable holiday. Choose between a traditional gulet, luxurious motor yacht or spacious catamaran from one of the hundreds of charter boats we offer in Turkey. 

For water sports enthusiasts sail to Hidayet Bay. The waters in this area are crystal clear and perfect for swimming and snorkeling. Once on land, chill out at Gemiler Beach or visit the ancient city of Kayaköy. A sailing holiday in Turkey also gives you the opportunity to dive among the sunken ruins of Kekova, bathe in the most turquoise Mediterranean waters and swim with sea turtles in Cirali.

sailing turkey

Boats in Turkey

Rent a Sailboat in Turkey
Rent a Catamaran in Turkey
Rent a Gulet in Turkey

Sailing conditions

If you plan to go on a sailing holiday in the summer, keep in mind that July and August are the hottest months in Turkey and rain is rather unusual at this time. In general, sailing conditions in Turkey are excellent, with offshore northwesterly winds ranging from 15 to 21 knots throughout the sailing season, so there is no need to worry about strong currents or tides.

temp
Average temperatures in Turkey (south coast)
temp
Average temperatures in Turkey (south coast)
Sailing Conditions
  • Before starting your sailing trip with family or friends, keep in mind that winds pick up late in the morning and will continue until late in the afternoon. These are the ‘Meltemi’, winds prevailing from the northwest that are predominant from May to October and are at their strongest in July and August.
  • Take note that there are other local winds as well, so it’s best to research ahead of your sailing holiday to be prepared.
  • Keep in mind that there are some boating restrictions in Turkey. There is no anchoring allowed at the entrances and exits of the Dardanelles, Gulf Of Izmir, Kumkale, and the zone north of Bosphorus.
  • Historical areas such as Hamam Bay are off limits to boats.
  • Anchoring and mooring are pretty straightforward in Turkey, with few major rock bottoms or reefs to contend with. However, you should watch out for shallow and sand-bottomed bays.
  • Go on a skippered sailing holiday when rent a boat with Zizoo for peace of mind and relaxation while exploring the region.

Suggested sailing route

sailing turkey

Start your sailing holiday in Turkey from Fethiye in Tarzan Bay where you can take a swim in one of the most photographed beaches in Europe, the Blue Lagoon, and swing from a rope into the crystal clear waters like, you guessed, Tarzan. Enjoy a gorgeous sunset at Gemiler Island and then sail your boat along the southern Turkish coast to Kas. Stop at Aquarium Bay to explore the local markets’ incredible offerings of jewellery and fabrics. Continue island-hopping and stop at the beach at Limangazi, the fishing village of Üçağız, and the sunken city at Kekova, which is home to a large sea turtle population.

From the magnificent coastal city of Marmaris, you can embark on a dream sailing trip, passing through scenic blue coves and beaches nestled between mountains. We recommend visiting some of these untouched treasures, such as Turunc Cove and Icmeler Beach. From Bodrum, you can easily sail to the ruins of Knidos, an ancient Greek settlement sitting at the tip of a peninsula on Turkey’s eastern side. Among some of the other popular highlights in Turkey are two of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World: The ruins of the Mausoleum of Maussollos in Halicarnassus, and the Temple of Artemis in Ephesus.

For more inspiration for your sailing holiday in Turkey, check out Zizoo’s 7-day sailing route along the Turquoise Coast.  

Read helpful articles for your next sailing holiday