Review: Greenland Hotel, Turkey

This amazing hotel is in Oludeniz in Turkey. I stayed there back in June with my boyfriend and two friends and I don’t know why it’s taken me this long to get around to reviewing it.

We wanted a cheapish, all inclusive package holiday so we headed to Thomas Cook and booked seven days at the Greenland Hotel. We liked the sound of it being slightly up in the mountains but also within walking distance of some night life.

Sitting by a swimming pool in the sun isn’t usually my first choice of holiday but if I’m going to be truthful, all we wanted was to relax, drink and eat somewhere warm. The Greenland Hotel gave us so much more than that. We made friends, ate some amazing food and did get drunk every night once or twice.

The Rooms

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The rooms were bright and airy. Ours looked out onto a grassy area where there were hammocks to relax in. This was great if you needed somewhere in the shade to have a nap or read a book. Definitely my idea of relaxation.

The maids were amazing, very friendly and kept the rooms in tip-top shape (despite the fact that I am hellishly messy…).

The Pools

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There are two pools. One I would call the adult pool, which is more for relaxing by and taking the odd dip in the cool water. There’s a bar nearby so you can enjoy a drink. Then there’s the main pool complete with slide, bars, entertainment and the restaurant just next door.

The slide is only open at certain times during the day but this adds to its appeal. It’s so exciting when it gets turned on and you can go and play. Even as an adult this was one of my favourite things.

The Food

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I can’t fault the food (I put on half a stone in one week so I certainly had my fair share). All inclusive food is often sub par but this was amazing. Not only was there a huge selection but all of it was delicious. You could choose from foods you’re used to like spaghetti bolognase, chips or a beef stew or you could sample something more exotic. Baklava, curries, rice dishes, ox tongue, fresh fruit and so on.

During dinner there was also free wine on offer or you could get spirits and beer from the bar.

Another amazing thing about the hotel were the pancakes. Up near the adult pool a group of women would start making pancakes. Everything from banana to cheese and potato. You could either visit them and ask for your pancake of choice. (Asking in Turkish is encouraged.) Or, if there were any pancakes left, they’d be delivered around the sunbathers. I didn’t even know what to do when I was brought food. It made me a happy bunny.

The Entertainment

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When booking this hotel, I didn’t think the entertainment would be of interest to me but it actually turned out to be the highlight of our evenings.

During the day the boys played water polo or we’d all join in with a game of darts. There was also water volley ball and perhaps a lot of other stuff we didn’t get to see. In the evenings things started off a little slow with some belly dancing and a disco. I thought that was going to set the tone for the rest of the nights…

From there on the entertainment was held in the amphitheatre. It all starts with a kids disco and entertainment before the show begins. We saw acrobats, contortionists and all sorts. I have never been so impressed.

The People

The team behind the hotel and its entertainment are wonderful. They work so hard and produce something really special. We were well looked after, entertained and feel we made some friends. In fact, the people are one of the reasons we are thinking of going back this year.

The Turkish Spa

British people are very reluctant to be sold to, even when it’s something they will want to try. We were all a little sceptical when we were stopped down by the bottom pool by Yusef as he tried to sell us spa packages. We shouldn’t have been. Firstly, what a lovely man and secondly, the Turkish spa was the best experience of the whole holiday.

You go off site for the spa but all transport is provided. It starts with a traditional Turkish bath where you are washed and rubbed down by a Turkish man (wish magic soap suds). It’s a weird experience but the massage they give was one of the best I’ve ever had.

Afterwards we had a facemask and some apple tea before going in for a full body massage. This was great although I wish the woman had shut the door into the treatment room, I did feel a little self conscious.

It was awesome and so relaxing. It’s great to do this at the beginning of your holiday as it helps you to tan more evenly without so much likelihood of getting burnt! (But wear suncream, obviously!)

The Surrounding Area

It’s about a 20-30 minute walk into the town from the hotel but there are cheap buses that run every 15 minutes or so if you don’t want to walk. There are taxis by the road too.

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Hisoranu itself is very touristy. We went on a Thomas Cook bar crawl (I don’t know what possessed us…) and the whole thing was full of drunk 18 year olds falling over, pawing one another and throwing up in the street. There are also loads of cheap tacky shops where you can buy souvenirs.

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It’s not for everyone but perhaps for one night it’s fun to be dazzled by all the lights while drinking cocktails and watching someone break dance.

I can recommend the Shades restaurant on the way into the town. Amazing food.

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Most evenings out at home end with a greasy kebab. It made sense to do that in Turkey too. At 2am we sat down and got table service in a little café. We were served the most amazing lamb kebabs. Nothing fancy or over the top but very yummy. The place was just opposite the Zombie bar.

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If Hisoranu doesn’t sound appealing, head to Fethiye. It’s about 20 minutes away by bus. There are some great shops, cafés and sights there plus you can get a water bus to the beach. Do bear in mind, though, that it’s so much hotter down there at sea level.

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If you fancy a walk, you’re in the mountains. You can walk for miles along paths and untrodden ground, being higher up means that it’s cooler but it’s still 30 degrees or so during the day so this should be a morning or evening activity.

Things to Bear in Mind

  • You are in the mountains and this means the hotel is on a hill. There’s quite a severe one between the two pools.
  • It’s not a modern hotel, it could do with updating but it’s clean and friendly
  • If you want to spend everyday by the beach, this isn’t the hotel for you
  • It’s only house spirits, beer and dinner-time-wine that are free as part of the all inclusive (and soft drinks, of course)
  • It’s a family hotel with lots to offer kids, so not the place to be if you hate children
  • You’ll need to claim your sun bed early to get the best spot but it’s not as bad as some hotels
  • There’s free Wifi in all the pool bars
  • Perhaps hire a car if you want to see more of the surrounding area

Greenland Hotel
Hastane Mevki Gokceovacik Koyu
Oludeniz 48300
Turkey

The whole Thomas Cook package including flights, transfers and the all inclusive stay cost just over £500 pp in June 2013.

Author: Jess

Writer, traveller, Norfolk gal.

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