A gulet is an all wooden motor sailing yacht built for blue-cruising Turkey, the coasts in the calm warm waters of the Mediterranean. These yachts are built to center life on deck during the Gulet charter. Spacious decks and housing a large (usually) aft half mooned shaped dining and lounging area are their main features. They might not all be equipped to sail but most have a mainsail for when the wind gets up if the clients insist. This is one of the main differences with real sailing yachts as they are all fully equipped to really sail.
Turkish Gulets are custom-built for cruising in comfort so you can do nothing but relax and enjoy the atmosphere of total well-being. For centuries the Turks have understood that the best way to truly appreciate Turkey’s stunning coastline is to take to the sea in comfort. That is called Blue-cruise. Now it can be your turn if you like!
The number of passengers a gulet carries varies, according to size, between 8 and 16 plus. On a 17 to 25 metre boat, that is quite a breathing space for each person considering that every passenger has private quarters and jointly used decks, saloons, etc. are quite spacious. This combines the relative privacy expected of a yacht with the feeling of security that bigger vessel affords. Yet, the feeling of anonymity common to large cruise ships is alien to a gulet voyager. Even total strangers who meet for the first time on a gulet, end the tour in an aura of sincere camaraderie.
A gulet can best be compared to a small hotel afloat. Gulets have brawny engines that drive them along at 8 to 11 knots easily. They are rigged with two masts in general. Gulets are similar to cruise liners and smaller passenger boats only in that they afford their passengers fully separated accommodation, provide service and entertainment. However, that is where the similarities end. On a gulet, close encounters engender an atmosphere of friendship and sharing. Relationships among the passengers and the crew tend to be more personal. With fewer people to cater for, the crew can better serve the individual wishes of the ”guests”. Furthermore, gulets can take you to smaller deserted bays whereas cruisers are bound from one port to another in general.
In a gulet, all sleeping quarters are separate Nobody sleeps on convertible settees or saloon berths, unless they wish to do so. There are double berths in each cabin and occasionally, upper bunks. Every cabin has its own WC and shower. The crew sleep and use the facilities in their separate quarters. Common quarters include a large saloon, a fully equipped galley commanded by a cook, lots of uncluttered deck space, sun mattresses strewn all over to laze on while tanning. Round sterned gulets have a mattress covered perch in the aft that is called a ”pigeon’s nest”, the most comfortable place to lounge or nap on the boat, protected by awnings. No gulet worthy of her name carries under three tons of fresh water, pressurized and heated at least for two hours every day .Unlike a bare-boat which is often limited in water supply, a gulet offers the chance to wash off the salt after every swimming party.
A gulet voyage is also the best introduction to yachting for those who have kept away from the sea thinking that it is ”unaffordable”. The rates are more or less at the same level of a 3 or 4 star hotel. It is possible to charter a boat together with your friends dividing the costs to very reasonable levels, especially in the lower season. ”Cabin charters” enable individuals or couples who can not bring together a group to charter a yacht themselves, to enjoy the Blue Voyage. The ”cabin charter” cruises are run on a regular basis every week or fortnight following a preset itinerary.