The Goat, The Boat, and The Bal

The Goat, The Boat, and The Bal

After finally getting the rental car, we made our way to Dalyan, an hour drive from Marmaris. The sole purpose of staying a night in Dalyan was to check out the Lycian Tombs, and the Airbnb that I had specially picked out had a full frontal view of the tombs.

View from the airbnb dining patio

Lycian tombs date back to 4th century BC, and the reason behind building the tombs high up in the rock wall along the coast is so that the souls can be transported to the afterworld by winged-like sirens.

On our way to lunch, we saw this unexpected, vibrant, and cool graffiti.

Once we polished off our lunch, we headed to the river front to get a boat that would bring us across the river to the base of the tombs. We had mistakenly thought that we could hike up to the tombs, but after talking to a couple of tour operators we realized that the hike was up to Kaunos ruins. There is no way to hike up to the tombs (at least not anymore). Joe and I had both read that row boat for hire can get us across and back for 10TL, but one tour operator after another kept wanting to charge 300TL (they would ultimately talk themselves down to 150 TL, and one to 130 TL, when we showed no interest – it is the slow season after all ). As we got to the western end of the promenade, we found the “ladies” who will row us across and back for 15TL (inflation).

The “ladies” are located right next to the park at the western end of the promenade
Once across, it was a mile (20-minute) hike up to the ruins.
Close up of the Lycian tombs

The path is actually paved, so it was more walking than hiking. The road started off flanked by little farmhouses with all sorts of animals – chickens, geese, goats, cows, horses. A few ladies had set up little stands selling homemade honey, pomegranate products, and olives right outside their homes.

The farm houses were gradually replaced by orange, pomegranate, and olive trees.

Olive tree

Twenty five minutes later we arrived at Kaunos ruins. Having already seen Hierapolis just a couple of days ago, we weren’t terribly impressed with this one. Fortunately, the ticket price was only a nominal 14TL each.

What I did enjoy about the ruin trip was our encounter with this little lady/fella.

While we were hanging out under the tree at the theater, it pushed its way through the wooden door, and hung around us. Thought it was unusual. At the same time, I noticed that the tree we were standing under looked as if the leaves had been “trimmed” to a certain length in relation to the stone steps underneath it. Looking at the goat, and looking at the tree, I put two and two together and suspected that the goat had eaten the leaves to a height where it can no longer reach them. Having nothing to do, I decided that I would help it out.

As we were leaving, a family with a little boy walked in. The little boy immediately showed interest in the goat, so I grabbed a small branch of leaves, and gave it to the boy so that he could take over the responsibility of feeding the goat.

Goat looking at the boy
On our way back, I tried an olive. It was so bitter!

Luckily, we got some ice cold pomegranate juice from one of the old ladies selling it out in front of her house to quench our thirst, and to wash down the bitterness.

Joe wanted to “spread the wealth”, so we stopped at the next lady’s stand and got a jar of her home made honey.

Turkish honey (bal) is supposedly very good and in high demand worldwide – a fact we weren’t aware of. The great majority of Turkey’s honey comes from the Aegean coast, which explains why we kept seeing roadside signs for “BAL” ever since Datça.

The darker color is pine honey from trees, and the lighter is blossom honey from nectar. The lady let us try a little of both, and we decided on the orange blossom honey (communication facilitated by Google translate and the old fashion hand gestures).

We decided that we would have it with nuts, sliced tomatoes and cucumbers (my own creation from our stay at the Cappadocia hotel) for breakfast for the next two weeks.

Back at the dock, we sat down at the büfe for some gözleme.
Mine with honey
Joe’s savory potato gözleme

We had tried gözleme back in Pamukkale a couple of days ago, and we realized that what we had there was nothing compared to what we had today. Today’s pancake layers were thin and crispy, and oh so delicious!

When we were ready to leave, the büfe lady phoned the row boat lady to pick us up.

We spent the rest of the early evening walking eastward along the promenade to check out the scenery.

View of the Lycian tombs lit up at night as seen from the Airbnb dining patio.

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