The word probably derives from the French goulette, or schooner. For generations these two-masted wooden vessels, sometimes also known as caiques, have been used for transport and fishing along the southern coast of Turkey. Traditionally made by master craftsmen from Bodrum, gulets were once used by fisherman and sponge divers to transport their catch. Typically designed with a sharp bow, broad beam and rounded aft, they are now designed and fitted with comfort, not trade in mind. Built of pine wood and styled with a pointed fore and rounded aft, gulets differ from the western boats with their design to allow passengers more space on deck, in order to take as much advantage as one can from the pleasant climate of the Aegean. An aft deck for dining and lounging in the shade of a sun awning, and a forward deck with numerous sunbeds accentuate the lavish experience of cruising a coast where magic reigns without interruption. All passengers have to do is lie back, gaze at the horizon, and relax.
Bodrum was a small harbor of fishers and spongers until 1960. This most popular of sea adventures began quite by mistake when a few years after the foundation of the Turkish Republic, a political writer, Cevat Sakir Kabaagacli, also known popularly as Fisherman of Halikarnas, was exiled to Bodrum for publishing a story about army fugitives. Bodrum and its neighborhoods acquired fame and became a holiday town attracting much attention with the “Blue Cruises” which Fisherman of Halikarnas discovered and introduced to his artist friends such as Sabahattin Eyuboglu and Azra Erhat.
The judges who sentenced Cevat Sakir to a number of years in the remote port knew nothing of its lifestyle, which as Cevat Sakir found out, was something like paradise. He settled down and adopted the name, the "Fisherman of Halikarnas", writing stories about the town and its locals- in particular, the fishermen. On his regular outings with fishermen, he gradually got to know the various coves and bays in the Gulf of Gokova. When visiting intellectuals from Istanbul dropped in, he took the opportunity to introduce them to the fishermen’s way of life. Together they constructed a theory of culture which embraced the cultures of all the people who lived in Asia Minor. Sakir’s tours of the Gulf of Gokova became famous and were given the name, "Mavi Yolculuk" or "Blue Cruise", and at this point, we wish to pay our gratitude to the man who inspired this voyage of exploration - the source of enjoyment for many thousands of people for almost 60 years.