Apparently this is the time of year when most people plan their summer holidays, the cold, dark days making us long for the long lazy days of summer (myself very much included). With that in mind, I have somewhere to share with you if you’re in need of some inspiration.

At the end of October my friend Annabel and I found ourselves unexpectedly hopping a plane to Izmir in Turkey. We’d planned to go to Cuba but after we found out Annabel had a mini one on the way we had to have a rethink. Turkey was still warm, it wasn’t too far and I’d read a couple of articles about a little resort called Alaçati on the Çesme peninsula that made me think I’d found our spot.

Having checked the weather forecast, we were pretty sure the first day would be our only real sunbathing opportunity so we woke up early and hot footed it to the nearest beach for the day.DSC00317Which didn’t disappointDSC00313We happily lazed away the morning reading our books before the wind picked up and eventually drove us off the beach. Handily we had plenty to explore.

The little town of Alaçati is virtually unheard of in England but it’s a big hit with the Turks, during the winter it’s a sleepy little town but the population swells tenfold in the summer months as people flock here from all over Turkey. It didn’t take us long to see why.DSC00365Flowers tumble from every available surface, filling the air with their heady scents.DSC00359

DSC00361DSC00370DSC00364And every building has the most charming shutters, almost all painted varying shades of blue, the ones below being my favourite. I plan to replicate them on my future French chateaux.DSC00355DSC00354DSC00348 The only problem being that with all the beauty up above you have to be careful not to trip over your own feet. Something I’m not altogether sure I managed.DSC00342DSC00337DSC00335Tiny side streets beg to be ambled down and it’s wonderfully easy to lose a few hours pottering around without even realising.DSC00326DSC00327DSC00347Of course if you get hungry you can always grab a quick snack. This man sets up his little stall and sells every kind of pickle you can imagine. If only he’d set up shop in London.DSC00346But don’t worry, if you’re in need of something more substantial, there are more than enough restaurants to choose from., each one prettier than the last.DSC00328DSC00351How great would this one be for a party?DSC00375Some even come with your own private bodyguard, which is where we happily plonked ourselves for a nibble and a glass of delicious local wine. The region is famous across Turkey for its wine and I spent the next few days happily sampling them whilst Annabel acted as designated driver.DSC00377DSC00380DSC00382Not a bad way to kick off the week!



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