Roasting in Turkey - The Guardian.co.uk

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Add Date : 24.05.2010 16:43

Roasting in Turkey - The Guardian.co.uk

Roasting in Turkey Travel experts choose their best holidays on Turkey's coast, from villas in unspoilt fishing villages to boutique hotels and white-sand beaches * The Guardian, Saturday 10 April 2010 * Article history The ancient ruins of Olympos. Heaven sent ... the ancient ruins of Olympos on the beach at Cirali. Photograph: Brandon Sawaya Cesme peninsula, Aegean Turkey's coast is one of its greatest assets. Sadly, this is no secret to hotel developers and bus-loads of tourists. For the sea, eschew torrid and overdeveloped Bodrum for the boutique hotels of the Cesme peninsula, on the Aegean coast. Alacati is where Greek workers, brought from the islands by the Ottomans in the late 1800s, established vineyards. These all but disappeared in the last century, though new ones are being re-established, along with olive groves and lavender plantations. Come now though for the sandy beach, also a major centre for windsurfers. The Tas Otel (tasotel.com, doubles from €90), which opened in 2001, is a stylish conversion of a Greek mansion with a pool. Further to the north the seaside resort of Assos, where Aristotle once lived, retains its charm. You can visit the Temple of Athena there. Also make the time to take a trip down the coast from Alacati to gastronomic hotspot Ayvalik which is relatively undeveloped and surrounded by olive groves and has many Ottoman houses. Ferries run to the Greek island of Lesvos from here, too. John Scott, editor of Cornucopia magazine