You know what’s really fun? Realising that your holiday flight company has gone bust with 48 hours to go before you’re due to fly.. We had time booked off, everything was set and sorted, luckily we were due to pay for the hotel once we arrived (we were originally going to Spain for ten days), before realising that we actually couldn’t even get there. We set up camp at the kitchen table with less that two days notice to find a holiday - “please, just anywhere that’s hot” - to go on while our bags were already half-packed. Luckily we managed to find a package deal to Turkey where it promised us weather of 27 degrees for ten days. It wasn’t an ideal scenario but it actually turned out pretty well, considering!
We ended up finding a hotel near Alanya in Turkey which had everything we needed from a last minute holiday - a family room, swimming pools, a bit of entertainment.. we booked it and set off the next day to Manchester airport ebfore the booking confirmation had even come through - fun times. Anyway, we got there, it was hot, there were slides and soft play for the girls, sunbeds overlooking the sea for us, and we settled in pretty quickly.
We spent a few days doing absolutely nothing, and it really hit the spot. We read and relaxed whilst taking it in turns with watching the kids, drank beers in the mid-afternoon sunshine and it was just perfect. I get a bit itchy after doing nothing for too long, so a few days in we got the bus down to the next town along - Alanya, where we wandered round the shops (all the tat that you can imagine and more), and had a drink in a harbour bar. A few days later we went to the historic town of Side Belesi, where we wandered around the Roman ruins, shopped a little, had lunch by the sea, got the girls their millionth ice creams of the week, before heading back to read, relax and do very little again back at the resort.
The food was authentically Turkish and was absolutely gorgeous - we challenged Vivienne to try lots of different dishes throughout our time there and after a few days she really got into it. The downside is that I put on about ten pounds in ten days and I’m 100% blaming the baclava that was constantly on offer.. I googled the calories on the last day and said “Oh right.. so that’s why my clothes aren’t fitting properly..”, but never mind. When in Rome, and all that.
I also challenged Vivienne to swim with me in the sea, and we bought a snorkel from one of the shops nearby.. this was a challenge set mainly because I, myself, am really quite scared of swimming in open water and I really didn’t want to pass my fear down to her. We took the plunge a few times and I’m so glad we did. It always feels pretty good to face little fears and I hope we’ll do it again in the future.
I was hoping that this holiday we’d break the mould and step away from the all-inclusive pattern we’ve been in over the past few years, but with two days to spare it was exactly what we needed to have a package take care of everything after our last holiday plans fell through. I would like to branch out a little next time - this holiday was exactly what we needed but I do wish we’d found somewhere that we could wander out to, or somewhere within a small town that we could explore a bit more.
Anyway! Here’s how Turkey looked for us. I think we’ll be heading back next year (to avoid any chaos by Brexit and the pound etc) but I think we’ll definitely look at heading to a more scenic part, maybe Oludeniz or Fetiye. I also think I’ll keep my distance a little more from all the Baclava so it doesn’t hurt quite so much when I get back to the gym after holiday..