Spots where famous windsurfing competitions occur not necessarily are beautiful holiday places; Alacati, is one of the spots that, in addition to a PWA slalom tour stage, taking place every year, from sometimes, also provides the option for a nice time of vacation.
Windsurf spot reviews: Alacati (Turkey)
Also racers recognize this spot as one of the best they spend their time during races, compared to the ones selected for PWA stages. The above, of course, considering not only wind conditions and spot, but also easiest to reach, logistic, food quality, etc. In order to provide a complete and precise review, it is necessary to have visited the spot more and more times in different periods during the year; so this cannot pretend to be a complete review. This is more the story of a holiday, taking into account the possibilities to have good time on widsurfing. Also suggestion on mistakes to be avoided or good things to be repeated are added.
PWA slalom stage takes regularly place around middle of august; this allows to spend a few days on a good vacation and to enjoy races, in addition this beautiful place can be visited, at the end.
This is the period of the year having the best wind statistics; of course it is not possible to create a good statistic based on few days, one time only; we can say that, on 10 days, we found 4/5 no wind days, 3 days of wind that seemed to be the standard thermal wind (about 12/17 knots) and a couple of days with stronger wind, probably due to the addition of thermal effect and baric gradient (in this case we had about 25 knots).
If we give to the above the value of a good statistic, we could say that, having about 50% of windy days, is almost disappointing, especially if you consider this is the best wind period. However the 4/5 days of no wind were due to bad weather near Alacati that had a bad influence on the wind. What it seems is that, in case of standard wheatear conditions, the wind frequency at August could be near 100%.
Alacati is placed in the south-west of Turkey, in the Bodrum peninsula. This place is luckily a long way far from “hot” places that are famous due to the bad events of the last few months.
So, this allows us to stay relaxed; we are so far from “hot” zone that we are not aware of problems that are happening, with the exception of the internet or television news: so, we can enjoy holiday.
You can reach Alacati using direct flights, or, in the worst case, with a one stage flight, at Istanbul; from Malpensa to Izmir it takes about 2,5 flight hours. It then takes 1h or a little bit more, with car/bus; at the end, you need 6/7 hours from home to hotel: very good; isn’t it?
You can arrange the holiday by yourself, but asking help to an agency could be helpful especially if it is also specialized for vacations to famous windsurfing spots,.
As always, we cannot refer to specific hotels or similar, but the one we have been arranged by the agency is really super luxury, we only say it has the treatment “Super all inclusive”, only after some days we understood what it does mean: you can eat and drink everything at any time, in every place of the hotel, proprietary beach included. Almost embarrassing.
Who prefers the solution “Tourists, do it yourself”, will not have problems, however he/she will not save money; on the contrary....
Alacati’s bay is amazing, as well as waters where you can enjoy swimming.
Windsurfing zone is the one nearest the closed zone of the bay; nearest the bay exit you can find proprietary and/or non-reachable beaches.
Once out, you can have windsurfing in a wonderful environment.
Another nice surprise is about other’s boats courtesy. It happens that sail and motor boats completely stop their course to give precedence to windsurfers; you, know, we cannot imagine this happens at our spots, where we are targets for motor boats.
Of course, nothing is perfect, as it seems......so, the beach where windsurfing centers are and the frontside Sea are not simply crowed, much more.
Frankly speaking it seems to be at Torbole beach (when you say “Torbole”, it means also for wind conditions, about that we will talk in a moment).
This not necessarily has to be intended as negative, at the contrary: Torbole is, in my opinion, one of the best and nicest spots for windsurfing, but it is just to give an idea about overcrowding and wind quality, for better or for worse.
To me, that do not like overcrowding and gusty wind (who does it like?), it does not mean the best.
Of course we are talking of middle of august; if you try to have vacations at nice places, you cannot claim to stay alone!!!!
Alacati beach is full of centers where you can rent windsurfing gear, but we can say that expectations have been disappointed a lot; maybe it should be better to bring with ourselves our own windsurfing gear in a bag....(mine gear is mine gear). If so, you can store it at windsurfing centers.
Ah, if you decide to rent, here we are few suggestions:
• You shall never do an advance booking and payment. It should be better rent and pay on beach, basing on available gears and only the days of good wind forecast; for gears you will have a wide choice, unluckily, not the same for quality. However I am demanding, a lot demanding, I know perfectly!!!
• Bring with yourself your own fins: not clear the reason why, also paying for insurance, they want money in case of broking the fin; they say fins are not covered by insurance. So, in order to avoid discussions.....
Due to the fact we are in a quite long bay and wind arrives from the closed side of it, the disturbing effect of the earth cannot be avoided. It is quite gusty, on the other side the water is almost flat, or just a few choppy.
So, as we said before, to give an idea, we feel to be at Torbole, near Pier hotel beach: almost same wind and water conditions.
Who wants to have slalom sessions, should use a board 75/80 cm wide and a 7.9/8.6 sail; PWA sailors always use their biggest registered board and sails between 8.5 and 9 m2, pls consider they have races only when the wind is completely blowing on the race course and at its own maximum force in the day, for that spot. We would like to go out also when wind conditions are lighter. For sure they are big guys, but pls consider also girls use 72/75 boards and never sails smaller than 7.9. Girls are not big, on the contrary, someone small and very nice; no specific refer).
As we said wind is between 12 and 17/18 nodi, almost gusty, more near the beach, from surf centers side. It arrives from left. If you can, it should be better to go on the opposite side of the bay, you will find an amazingly beautiful beach.
What should we add? You should not miss a trip to see others town and beaches near Alacati. You can decide if rent a car, taking it for the whole holiday time, at Izmir airport. This should be almost mandatory if you have windsurf gear bags. It is necessary for logistic purposes more than that for transfer from airport to hotel. You can also decide to use Bus; it is possible, no problem.
So Alcati is a spot that you should absolutely visit, at least once in your life and also have windsurfing. I would say that Turkey should be very interesting; Istanbul should be very nice, but maybe not actually the best place to have vacations.......
We can finish also saying that people sharing holidays with you, also if they do not enjoy windsurf. They will be happy, especially if you select an high level hotel and spend enough time to trips and evenings at Alacati town, that is characteristic and positively animated.
All seems to be similar to nicest Italian places, like Gargano, Sardegna etc....
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The video here below gives a very good idea of the spot