On April 27th 2013 I got married to my wonderful husband. It was my responsibility to plan and book the honeymoon. Being a solo traveller at heart, it was tempting to go somewhere a little off the beaten track and take my husband places he’d never dreamed of going before. Although he’d never been on a plane before, so anywhere in the world would be new to him! After much deliberation we decided on a package holiday to Turkey. Having spent two years planning and executing the wedding, pretty much by myself, I decided that all I really wanted from our holiday was to chill out. If we got to see some of Turkey along the way, that would be a bonus.
We booked the trip with Thomson. The Thomson Couples hotel was adults only and just outside the resort of Marmaris. The whole booking process (online) was really easy and we were sent countdown emails to build the excitement in the months and weeks leading up to our honeymoon. All marketing ploys, of course, to try and sell us excursions and car parking!
When we finally got on the Thomson Airways plane it really sank in that this was not going to be a Singapore Airlines experience. My last flight was on the Airbus A380 from Singapore back to London. Our flight to Dalaman was nearly four hours and my husband and I were squished in all the way with just our books and the view out the window for entertainment. This wasn’t a surprise; I have flown on a chartered flight before, but I wished we had a bit more space.
On arrival in Turkey we made our way to our transfer bus, which was just for guests going to our hotel, the Marmaris Imperial. This is one of the benefits of a Couples brand hotel. During our 1.5 hour transfer I was really surprised by how green Turkey is. I don’t really know what I was expecting, perhaps somewhere a bit dry and barren, but it was totally opposite. We drove through lush, green countryside climbing the mountains and descending back down to the coastal resort of Marmaris. Our hotel wasn’t in the resort itself, which I was pleased about because it’s not really my cup of tea.
The Marmaris Imperial is a beautiful hotel set up the side of a hill, offering many of the rooms stunning views across the bay to the resort. We were treated excellently by all the staff at the hotel and the Thomson reps. A week all inclusive is not my normal style but it was exactly what I needed after all the stress of the wedding. Madly, my husband said he wanted to chill out and I told him that I’d want to go out and about every day. It turned out to be the other way round! We experienced three excursions that we booked through Thomson, which I’ll cover in later blogs, but otherwise all I wanted to do was sit on the sun lounger and read my book!
Coming home the check in process was pretty appalling as four flights were checking in at once, and then the food and drink prices at the airport were pure extortion. Two bottles of Powerade cost me £7! More money was extorted from us when we paid £15 for lunch on the plane. Unfortunately, we didn’t have any choice because we left the hotel at 10.30 so were starving by the time we got on the plane at 15.00. Landing was another story all together. All I’ll say is that there were 30 mph gusts and I wept out of relief when we finally touched down.
Overall, we both had a fantastic first package holiday experience. Would we do it again? Yes we would but that doesn’t mean that the indie traveller in me is gone. I’m currently planning a camping trip this summer. Just got to convince my husband to sleep in a tent! Wish me luck with that one!