Windsurfing holidays in Turkey are popular with everyone from solo windsurfers and to families. The jagged coastline is dotted with bays and coves that provide calm waters with gorgeous sandy beaches.
The primary wind source, the Aegean Sea, causes airflow to travel east to west in an optimal cross-shore direction for most of the coastline.
The best time to visit is in the summer when both air temperature and wind speed is peaking. While there are a few windsurfing spots on the Black Sea Coast, prime Turkey windsurfing is found on the Aegean.
If you prefer activity holidays where they mix excitement and action with beach life, there’s plenty of choice here. The following are the top 10 windsurfing holidays in Turkey.
Perhaps not just the most delectable windsurfing holiday in Turkey but on the globe. Just a stone’s throw east of the Greek island of Chios, Alacati is found on the Cesme Peninsula on the shore of a pristine, turquoise bay.
The shallow, glassy water and Mediterranean sun create opportunities for picture-perfect sessions in an area the size of a square kilometre. Wind conditions are beyond favourable.
From May to September enjoy the Meltemi winds which blow sideshore, east to west. The rest of the years sees the Poiras windflow in the opposite direction, but much lighter. With winds gradually increasing during the day all level windsurfers can find the perfect conditions to improve their skills without feeling overwhelmed.
Made famous by a French windsurfing camp, Fener Beach is located on the Bodrum Peninsula jutting out into the Aegean Sea in southwest Turkey. With access to protected coves and the open sea, this spot is good for all abilities.
The camp has a tremendous selection of equipment for rent as well as transportation and accommodation. With a European attitude, professional lessons, and heavy surf for advanced riders, Fener is a great choice for the serious waterman.
The sister beach to Akyarlar Feneri, Turgutreis has only recently become one of the top 10 windsurfing holidays in Turkey. Just north of Fener along the western coast of the Bodrum Peninsula, Turgutreis remains unscathed from the degradation of popularity.
Although a windsurfing camp is now established here, the old fishing town retains much of its bucolic charm. The tiny municipality is known to set up a predetermined course in the water for those who wish to gauge their manoeuvres.
Between the Agean Sea and the Sea of Marmara is a tiny causeway which expands in to the Gulf of Saros, or Saros Bay. Located in northwest Turkey off the Gelibolu Peninsula, the spot is relatively remote and there is no where to rent equipment.
The bay is popular, however, and many serious windsurfers will travel here in the summer to experience conditions at their best. Guneyli Village and Kumbaba Shores are the spots with the most activity.
A smaller version of the neighbouring Alacati, Ilica picks up all of the Aegean wind energy and less of the crowds. Traditionally known as a summer destination for wealthy families, the beaches of Ilica are pristine and the water is a magnificent shade of blue.
With favourable Spring, Summer, and Autumn conditions, Ilica is growing steadily on the Turkey windsurfing scene. After hours there are plenty of restaurants and tasting rooms to visit making this location popular for relaxing holidays.
Just up the beach from Turgutreis on the Bodrum Peninsula is Kadikalesi. A big cove of waist-high water opens to the southwest and hosts the Meltemi winds during the summer months. Only a 20 minute walk from Turgutreis, Kadikalesi is a gem of the Bodrum coast and perfect for a windsurfing holiday in Turkey.
Beginners enjoy the light breezes early in the morning when lessons are given amidst the safest conditions for learning. Airflow picks up through midday and into the afternoon when more experienced windsurfers take to the water. Waves to jump can be found not more than a few dozen metres from shore.
Southwest of the city of Izmir lies the picturesque resort town of Akkum. The beaches here are beautiful and relaxed. They line two protected bays overlooked by hotels and seaside homes.
Paying for accommodation here often includes windsurfing equipment rentals and lessons. The town is small and quaint and its close proximity to Izmir makes it a popular destination for a day or weekend windsurfing holidays in Turkey. Wind conditions peak in the summer months.
Closer to the city of Bodrum than Akyarlar Feneri or Turgutreis, Bitez is good option for those without access to personal transportation. A bus runs regularly from Bodrum to Bitez and windsurfers are usually aboard. Equipment can be rented at the dock where several businesses offer lessons as well.
Like most other spots on the Aegean coast, the wind is best in summer and tends to pick up as the day progresses. The best part is that your Bodrum hotel is only fifteen minutes away from the water!
South of the Bodrum Peninsula is the Datca Peninsula – a relatively unpopulated section of land jutting out into the Aegean Sea. The combination of high winds and few tourists make this a optimal location for intermediate to advanced windsurfers.
Accessible by a bumpy road from Marmaris, many visitors prefer to take a ferry from Bodrum to avoid the long drive. The town of Gebekum has a few rental shops but this is not the place to look for lessons if you are just starting out.
At the very western tip of the Cesme Peninsula lies the beach of Pirlanta. The sand here is bright white and the beach is popular for holiday sunbathing and lounging. But when the winds pick up during the hot summer months, Pirlanta becomes a haven for windsurfing and kitesurfing holidays.
Generally shallow and flat, the bay here is optimal for beginners although perfect cross-shore wind conditions often draw experiences riders. The town is small so accommodation is difficult to find, but there are always options in Cesme just a short drive away.