Sahil Şeridinde... Çalış Plajı, Türkiye

Çalış Beach, an endearing Turkish seaside resort that isn't merely just a simple holiday town, its been emotional! It's not the most liveliest of places when compared to the other resorts but this resort town makes its impression in many other ways. Let me introduce you to the place that has welcomed us, a place that we've called our holiday home for the last decade. Hadi plaja gidelim! 

Could Çalış be called the land of the rising sun? No not really, but Çalış Beach does undoubtedly has the best sunset that I have ever seen! At around 7pm each evening the sky changes into a warm crimson colour signifying the burning sun to slowly set, this sun takes its time to set until its ready to do so. It's a sight that is timeless to me, a scene that is definitely unforgettable. During this holiday I have seen the sun set once, I know that's not much but that one time was perfect. Yes its a timeless moment when I'm in town. Located just fifteen minutes away from Fethiye is the seaside town of Çalış, a tourist resort which has seen a great surge of development over recent years. Çalış Beach has been a holiday favourite for us for the last fourteen years or so. Us Brits took over a few years ago, Çalış Beach used to attract a serious amount of German tourists but not now! It's OK really but don't move our towels!

Tourism has taken a slight beating due to the trouble in Istanbul, but for one thing I'm appalled to see that people are staying away from Turkey's Turquoise Coast because they believe that they will be affected. In actual fact nothing drastic has happened in this region and Istanbul stands to be a twelve hour drive from Çalış Beach so I don't see why this should be an issue, It's all stupid really! Embrace the summertime by booking a holiday to Turkey's Turquoise Coast? Greece got to crazy priced with the Euro so me and my parents made the decision to buy property in Çalış, Turkey. Çalış Beach is a family friendly holiday town with a small night scene of clubs and bars, if its a club night that your looking for I would head over the mountain to Hisaronu. The promenade has been modernised over the years and then some, work is still in progress with the project to take the walkway to Fethiye so the wheels are in motion. Nevermind that, I want to go back to Çalış, Turkey now!

Çalış's main street comes alive when the sun sets, presenting a series of restaurants and bars that will suit all palettes. Maria's English Restaurant and Bar caters us Brits abroad who wants to stick to the British food favourites, well occasionally. Maria's English Restaurant served up our weekly Sunday Dinner's and Full English Breakfasts when we chose to have them. When in Turkey it's right to enjoy Turkish cuisine. We would take a walk up Barış Manço Bulvarı away from our former holiday home to Aydin Pide. We have enjoyed many a pizza and pide at Aydin Pide over the years. It's quintessentially Turkish with a crazy owner. I tend to choose Turkish food most of the time because when I'm in Turkey I want to embrace the culture and essence of this country, we all have differing tastes and that's just grand! Since buying the house we have boycotted other places for Çalış, it's charm has had us returning since 2003! Evet Ç! 

Çalış Beach isn't really a lively resort compared to the other tourist areas, some of the select venues that try their best to cater for that niche. Amongst the bars and clubs the Scarlett Bar stands above the rest of the competition, owned by two brothers this ever-changing cocktail bar has turned itself into a vibrant club setting. Now and again I like to take things slow some nights, so with a little help from my Turkish friends I was introduced to Bahane Bar, meaning 'Excuse' in English I would give any excuse to have a quiet drink at this Turkish bar! Saying that our first night there we got quite boozy indeed! We were told to take it easy! Families tend to make up a large proportion of the tourists in Çalış Beach, so the pace of this tourist town is fair but relaxed. Çalış Beach has its own way of doing things when the sun sets, nothing is taken seriously because it's all about having a great time whilst we are on holiday. I for one really appreciate a mellowed night out from time to time? I do! 

Tucked away at the far end of Çalış Beach's everlasting beach front, located to left side if I'm not mistaken is Onur Beach Cafe. This family run beach cafe welcomes all to enjoy the beach at this great location. Overlooking the shores of Çalış Beach boasting free Wi-Fi access and sun-beds to enjoy this beach side cafe, I think its quite fantastic. Whether it be breakfast time, afternoon or evening there is no better time to visit Onur Beach Cafe. Mind you the Gin and Tonic tasted strong, a hearty measure of liquor always makes the best for a scorching day in the Çalış Beach sunshine! Get out from your hotel to see the other side of Çalış Beach, things work differently in a good way at the Onur Beach Cafe, keep in mind this beach side cafe is family run by a small team so practice makes perfect. I mentioned before I'm not one for English food whilst I'm in Turkey but the Full English Breakfast was really tasty! Yes!

I feel a duty to champion such a place because the owner and his family have worked very hard for what they own, they must be living their dream? Get down to Onur Beach Cafe and see what all the fuss is about and give this place a shout out on Trip Advisor because they deserve all the luck that comes their way! I'm not one of those people that favours the All-Inclusive style holiday so it always makes me feel better to contribute something to the local businesses within a resort. I've been down to Onur Beach Cafe several times this holiday as its accessible by the Günlükbaşı and Çalış Dolmuş, there is simply no excuse! Boycott the tourist traps and take a chance to visit the other side of Çalış Beach today. We support small local businesses at home, we should do the same on holiday! I have a lot going this side of 2013 and then 2014 so I can't commit to a date of return to Turkey, the phrase 'family holiday' might not exist anymore, I have new adventures planned! Çalış will be with me! 

Yes, Çalış Beach!

Joseph Harrison 


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