Camp with Anzac views at Gallipoli, Turkey
Mon 28 Jul 2014
Not obvious to Anzac tourists arriving and departing on tour buses is the amazing beach that stretches out to the North of Anzac Cove and the memorial site.
Stumbling on it myself, I had been on the look out for a beach to swim at in the vicinity of Anzac Cove. To swim adjacent to the Anzac sites seems a little disrespectful (even though the Anzac's themselves took time out from war for a swim, usually while been shot at).
About 3 km south of Anzac Cove there is an official camp area that has dense pine coverage along with a range of food and services.... but was filled out with post Ramadan Turkish people having the time of their lives.
To the North the tourist road deteriorates to farmers tracks, but Google Earth revealed some dirt roads that appear to give beach access. Glad that I made the effort carefully along the farmers tracks, a sandy park appeared that opened right onto the beach! Already camped out where some campers, one covered in Renault F1 team colours and one a 20 + year old army off road vehicle with a caravan bolted onto it - making it one of the most impressive camp vehicles I had ever seen.
Turns out the F1 coloured unit was just a publicity thing and the owners all the way to Germany to camp out at the beach there. Their off road camp truck mates an Austrian family that had just been by car ferry over to take on some Sahari safari group thing. Very interesting to speak to them.
Beyond the camping and onto the beach, one of nicest stretches of beach I had ever seen in Turkey ... and even Europe. The water clear and nicely deepening away from the shore.... swept by a light North wind that blew off shore any weed or rubbish.
In the water the temps were about 24 degrees by my estimate - making it just about ideal..... and just yonder about 3 k's was the Anzac hills and cliffs. Just amazing!
The only down sides:
- Not been decked out to camp properly (tented, stove, table chairs :)
- The amount of plastics and other rubbish (disposable nappies - yuck! ... all of which I set about cleaning up, with some reasonable improvement in vista in about 20 minutes.
At night, the day trippers cleared out leaving the Austrian German contingent and ourselves to marvel at the sky full of stars... and a late night dip in the Aegean Sea.
Along with me was friend Umut. 5 years in Australia I met him near the end of his time in Aussie but we had some excellent times. Being at the beach with the Turkish guy trying to speaking with an Aussie accent. He is working now in Turkey, but we along for the weekend, we had some beers and he spent his whole time in a Brisbane Broncos jersey. The locals did not know what to do with him... and said some some funny things that he was able to interpret.
Really, really nice way to stay and connect with Anzac legend in a so typically Australian way.