Imagine you’re being whisked around the Marmaris countryside in a jeep – your hair flying in the wind while your kids are beaming with excitement. That’s only the beginning of an incredible day out on a Jeep Safari with Happy Tours Turkey. The rest of the day involves water fights, walking across a sand bar at “Jesus beach” and walking up (and perhaps in) a waterfall.
We found that a jeep safari is a perfect family day out in Turkey. We holidayed in May and the weather was a pleasant 23 degrees. It was a comfortable day out for us, but we did need jackets at some points of the day. During the summer season though, the average daytime temperature is a sticky 35 degrees. A jeep safari is a great way to get some sightseeing, adventure and memory-making into your holiday without the kids complaining that they are boiling hot!
Itinerary on a Jeep Safari with Happy Tours
The day starts as it means to go on – forget a shuttle bus, with Happy Tours you are collected from the front of your hotel in a 4×4 jeep. This will be sometime before 9am, ready for the tour to begin at 9.30am. Over the course of the day you will enjoy coasting along the winding mountain roads (the roads are generally double-laned, well maintained and have metal guardrails – so nothing to worry about there!) through rural valleys and by the sparkling sea. The jeeps go in convoy and you’ll most likely be in a vehicle with other travellers as they hold up to 12 passengers. Going in a group is part of the fun – and your fellow passengers will become very important comrades during the water fight!
Water Pistol Fight
The first stop is the water fight – deep in a rural area you’ll be invited to hire water pistols for 50 TL (approximately £2.50).
In my opinion it’s a must. You don’t want to be the only person not armed with a water pistol as you do several off-road laps, overtaking and undertaking the opposition jeeps! You are guaranteed to get absolutely drenched, but there’s nothing more satisfying then aiming right in someone’s face and letting them have it!
We took our three children, aged 4, 6 and 8 on the jeep safari and the water fight was one of the absolute highlights of the holiday. Our 4 year old had a slight wobble the first time she got hit… but quickly her competitive spirit kicked in, and she was ready to get her revenge! Despite her small size, she was able to use the water guns with ease and was sitting high enough on her seat to be able to attack her foe.
On that note, the tours are recommended for children aged 4+. If the children are younger than 4, they need to sit on a parents lap for the duration of the day. You know your child best, but I think that 4 is a suitable age, and children much younger may find the water fight too intense.
The next stop is Turgut Waterfall, which is about 40km outside of Marmaris. The children enjoyed exploring the waterfalls and of course our big boys couldn’t resist going into the river for a dip. Our more cautious 4-year-old loved using the stepping stones to cross the river.
Lunch on the Jeep Safari with Happy Tours
Come lunch time we were ravenous. We went to a rustic farm-come-restaurant for BBQ chicken, rice, salad and bread. Chips and drinks can be purchased for extra. We loved this little stop – there was a hammock hanging over a stream and lots of wildlife to keep the children entertained – chickens, cats and a very cute puppy.
The last stop of the day was Jesus Beach. Jesus beach is a beach with a sandbar that you can walk out on, and from a distance it looks like you are walking on water. The kids enjoyed this – but be aware that the seafloor is shingle/stony rather than sand. Walking in flipflops or fancy sandals isn’t really an option so fasten on “Jesus sandals” or trainers might be a good idea. We didn’t come prepared, so we just had to brave the shingle.
It’s a day when you’ll be getting wet plenty of times, so wear a cozzie and make sure you bring a spare change of clothes with you.
You may want to get a waterproof phone case, but taking your own photos is not necessary – the whole day is filmed and photographed by a photography team who jump on and off the different jeeps like ninjas. We were quoted £40 for copies of our family photographs for the day.
Return to your hotel
The day finishes with the stunning 36km drive back to Marmaris. You’ll arrive back at your hotel at around 4.30pm.
Price of the Jeep Safari with Happy Tours
Happy Tour Turkeys prices are very good – having looked around with different travel agents on the Marmaris and Icmeler harbours – I can confirm that their tour prices are very competitive, if not cheaper. I really like Happy Tours Turkey because you can just explore their website and book online without any obligation.
Their pricing is clear, there’s plenty of information on the website about what is and isn’t included, what to expect, what to bring etc. There’s no needing to haggle or shop around with other vendors to get the best price – which let’s be honest is just a waste of time on your holiday and pretty awkward!
Happy Tours also have an instant messaging service on their website to answer any queries and a youtube channel in case you want to experience it online before paying the money to experience it yourself. This can be so helpful when booking excursions with children, because not all kids like the same things and you know your kids best.
We heard some horror stories of Brits who purchased their excursions through street vendors and who were lied to about what was included or who paid far too much for the same tour. With Happy Tours everything was transparent.
The cost of the Jeep Safari with Happy Tours is:
Child (aged 7-12) £10
Infant (0-6) Free