Boats preparing for new season in Marmaris and Bodrum
MUĞLA - Anatolia News AgencyBefore the opening of the new tourism season, millions of euros worth of wooden gullet boats are being restored and renovated in the Aegean provinces of Marmaris and Bodrum.
Blue voyages are organized in the Aegean region with nearly 100 wooden gullets, the size of which ranges from 24 to 43 meters. The boats, produced in Bodrum and Marmaris’ Bozburun district and sold for prices up to 2 million euros, serve as facilities for tourism and generate millions of Turkish Liras for the country’s economy each year.
The wooden gullets generally serve for one or two-week blue voyages and offer a comfortable holiday opportunity for tourists with their luxurious, hotel-like design. They have Jacuzzis, televisions, Internet and telephones, as well as many sports opportunities such as surfing, ringo and water skiing.
Experienced cooks employed on the boats prepare special menus for their guests using the region’s unique sea products. The boats generally stop in the coves of Göcek, Datça, Bodrum and Bozburun and sometimes include the Greek islands in their tour program if customers so choose.
The owner of one such boat company, Mustafa Yüce, said that they were now restoring their two 24-meter long boats before the tourism season opens. He said that the boats serve as swimming hotels.
“There are tourists staying in apart hotels for five euros a day. They pay 20 euros a day for a two-person hotel room. If we consider the daily price of a boat to be 1,500 euros in a full season, only one boat brings in as much foreign currency as a 75-room hotel does.”
Yüce said that the boating sector should determine a common price, adding that currently the quality of a boat was determined according to its size but should be considered by the boat’s levels of comfort and service to guests.
Demand for star classification on boats
Yüce said that tour prices of boats change according to the months of the tourism season. “Daily rent varies between 1,000 and 4,000 euros. Just like in hotels, boats should also have stars according to their quality and service. There should be a standard for boats and tours.”
He said that the boat owners in Marmaris had great difficulties in winter months docking their boats for maintenance because they spent more than 7,000 euros for three to four months. “Marmaris urgently needs boatyards,” he said.
Boat owners also encounter problems with waste water. “There is no place to discharge waste water outside port. Some 14-15 people are staying on a boat per day in the season. The waste water tanks are full every two days. This is why the boats come to the port to discharge the water. The number of waste water stations should be increased in the region,” Yüce said.