Tag Archives: Istanbul

Istanbul, Turkey: Black Sea Circumnavigation Completed

Photo: Bridge over the Bosphorus near Istanbul, Turkey.
We had a beautiful, clear day in September for our trip down the Bosphorus from the Black Sea to Istanbul. Photo by Lisa Borre.

Black Sea Logbook Entry

Date: 9/16/2010
Distance: 18 nm
Sailed from: Poyraz, Turkey
Lat: 40°58.3’N
Long: 29°02.1’E

Gyatso sailed down the Bosphorus today, returning to Istanbul 111 days after setting out on a voyage around the Black Sea. We visited five of the six countries during our 2,118 mile counter-clockwise circumnavigation, including Turkey, Georgia, the Ukraine, Romania and Bulgaria. Russian officials could not give us adequate assurances regarding clearance procedures, so we made a 330 mile offshore passage from Georgia to the Crimean Peninsula in the Ukraine to avoid entering Russian waters. It was a real disappointment not to be able to visit the site of the next winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

We met friendly people and were welcomed with warm hospitality along the way — the only exception was encountering the occasional Soviet-style government officials in Ukraine and in Georgia. Contrary to published guides about the Black Sea, we found it teaming with life. Dolphins and porpoises made regular appearances in our bow wave. We also met with many experts and scientists about the environmental conditions and were encouraged to learn of some signs of improvement to this highly degraded ecosystem. Continue reading Istanbul, Turkey: Black Sea Circumnavigation Completed

Not a traveler’s typical first day in Istanbul

Photo: David Barker at the Black Sea Commission in Istanbul. Credit: Lisa Borre.
David at the offices of the Permanent Secretariat for the Black Sea Commission in Istanbul. Photo by Lisa Borre.

Logbook Entry

Date: 5/11/2010
Location: Istanbul, Turkey

Learning about the three main species of jellyfish in the Black Sea while waiting for a ferry at the edge of the Bosphorus might not be considered a typical item on the itinerary of a traveler’s first day in Istanbul. Our informant, Ahmet Kideys, was not a tour guide either. He’s trained as a marine biologist and serves as the executive director of the Permanent Secretariat for the Commission for the Protection of the Black Sea from Pollution (Black Sea Commission), a group dedicated to environmental cooperation among the six countries surrounding the sea. Continue reading Not a traveler’s typical first day in Istanbul

Heybeliada, a peaceful cove near Istanbul in the Princess Islands

Photo: Heybeliada, Turkey in the Princess Islands near Istanbul. Credit: Lisa Borre.
It’s hard to imagine that this anchorage is just ten miles from the bustling city of Istanbul. Photo by Lisa Borre.

Logbook Entry

Dates: 5/9/2010 – 5/10/2010
Distance: 75.4 nm
Sailed from: Port Marmara, Marmara Adasi
Lat: 40°52.2’N
Long: 29°05.1’E

A long day which included some exciting sailing in 18-22 knots of wind through the large “parking lot” of ships waiting for the northbound traffic to open in the Bosphorus. They weren’t actually anchored but just sort-of “jinking around” like cars waiting for a parking spot at the shopping mall except these were dozens of very large ships concentrated in a 10 square-mile area southeast of Istanbul and the Princess Islands, our destination for the day. We kept a close watch and had to tack a few times but eventually threaded our way through the ship traffic to the Princess Islands. Continue reading Heybeliada, a peaceful cove near Istanbul in the Princess Islands

Arrival in Istanbul, Turkey

Photo: Ferry on the Bosphorus in Istanbul, Turkey. Credit: Lisa Borre.
We’re staying at a marina on the Asian side of Istanbul — the old city is just a short taxi ride and then ferry trip across the Bosphorus. Photo by Lisa Borre.

Logbook Entry

Dates: 5/10/2010
Distance: 10.2 nm
Sailed from: Heybeliada, Princess Islands
Lat: 40°58.3’N
Long: 29°02.1’E

We arrived in Istanbul today — a magnificent sight to see after 26 days, 14 passages and 562 miles since setting sail from Marmaris. It was a short hop from the Princess Islands to the Kalamis & Fenerbache Marina this morning where we found Gyatso a berth for the next two weeks. Continue reading Arrival in Istanbul, Turkey