Fethiye & Paragliding at Oludeniz

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Middle East » Turkey » Aegean » Fethiye
September 30th 2011
Published: October 12th 2011
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Fethiye is where I had hoped to have a go at tandem paragliding, it is one of the best locations for paragliding in the would and such a picturesque spot

Fethiye is also another pretty seaside location which is the destination of many travellers from England on package tours. So it was interesting to see Fish and Chips advertised outside the restaurants.

The bus trip to Fethiye was interesting we passed through acres and acres of glass and plastic glasshouses. Now I see from where all those lovely tomatoes and cucumbers we have been eating came from.

We booked to stay at the Fethiye Guest house, after getting on the Dolmus and telling the driver where we were going once again we were still on the bus, everyone else had got off and our driver didn't speak English, lovely. Oh well hop off and see what we can find. We asked a few locals but they had not heard of our guest house. Luckily the Info centre was close by so decided to ask them, they hadn't heard of it either.

Had to revert to getting my laptop out of my case and looked up the history page from the booking, the Info Centre called them for us and it turned out they were about 200 meters along the same road, so much for the Info Centres local knowledge.

The following morning we changed where we were staying as the Guest House was noisey and our room didnt have a very good view.

Booked ny paragliding flight for the following day and then jumped on a Dolmus to Kayakoy.

Kayakoy was a greek village but is now deserted as a result of a population exchnge between Greece and Turkey in 1923. The 3000 or so Greek Orthodox Christians living there were returned to Greece and some Turks in Greece where meant to resettle it, apparently the Turks got the worst deal as where they were living in Greece was productive farm land but Kayakoy is what looks like would have been very dry and unproductive. We met a lovely lady at the site who insisted we both wore one of her good luck charms (well it worked we didn't see a single snake)

Today all that remains is the walls of 400 or so homes and several churches, it is an odd feeling as you walk around, somewhat similar to a ghost town, the Greeks believed that one day they would return and entrusted some of their valuables to non Greek neighbours. They never did return and some of those chests still remain unopened.

Back to our accommodation, now staying at Ideal Pansion to be picked up to be taken to the Paragliding site, some discussion over if Sheryll is going to be able travel there with us, it all gets sorted and we travel half the way in someones private car, then swap to the company owners private car to take us to Oludeniz.

Sheryll walked to the beach and I was driven to the top of Mt Baba Dagi 1976 meters. It was a lovely day at the beach, but when I reached the mountain top we were in mist cloud and from the launch site you couldn't see the ground or the surrounding hillsides.

I thought that would be the end of it but my pilot got me into my suit and started to show me what I had to do on take off and land .

We stood on the edge of this cliff peering into the cold misty wind looking for a break in the cloud. Next came the command "Start Walking" and I nervously I took some steps forward as there was a small gap appearing in the mist.

A few steps more and I was told to sit in the harness and we were away. Out of the mist and into the clear and there in front of me 2000 meters below was the beach, somwhere down there Sheryll was looking out for me on the beach.

In some ways stepping out into the unknown may have been easier than walking off a cliff and being able to see where you were heading. The pilot was great and took a video of the flight along with some pic's as well. I cant add them to the blog as they are on a disk and this Netbook doesn't have a CD Drive, but I did take a few nervouse snaps with my own camera.

I enjoyed the flight, (until) we started to do some tight corkscrew downward spiral turns, even after being a pilot myself once and used to fixed wing flying, this G force in the Paraglider felt a bit uncomfortable, my pilot told me he thought all Kiwi's were crazy and we enjoyed that sort of thing.

The flight lasted about 45 mins, we flew out over the beutiful Oludeniz Lagoon and landed on the beach right in front of Sheryll. It was a great trip and I am glad that I took the flight.

Additional photos below
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