How to benefit from an All-Inclusive vacation
While I was reading, a dragonfly landed on the top of my book. He sat there quietly, watching me.
I was reading the latest novel by Haruki Murakami while sitting next to the Olympic size swimming pool. Behind me the building of our five-star All-Inclusive hotel stood quietly as it watched over its hundreds of guests unwinding on the shores of the Turkish Mediterranean sea.
Sunset at Turkish Mediterranean coast
The last sentence I read before the dragonfly landed was about throwing a stone in a pond, creating the well-known ripple effect. That part of the book was about things you do in life that create such an effect. Then I met the dragonfly.
He landed without any doubt or concern. He knew his landing spot exactly, at least so it seemed. Maybe he had been looking at me from high above in the sky, waiting for the right moment to float down.
I was surprised, not by the appearance of the insect but the way he looked at me. A dragonfly always puts a smile on your face, but this one did a lot more.
All around me people were swimming, having fun or drinking from their latest cup of coffee. But I was looking at my dragonfly. I thought he would be gone within a second or two, but he did not. His huge eyes seemed to look straight at me. Looking into his eyes was like looking into deep space, with a slight glance of greenish northern light. Hypnotising. After a while I could see his mouth open and close. It looked like he was talking! But what was his message?
Raindrops and palm trees
All-Inclusive euphoria spinning around
If you know Murakami‘s style of writing, this could just be a part of one of his novels. It was a moment of surrealism, insects talking to people without making sound. In these 40 seconds I enjoyed my one-on-one with this dragonfly while the world of All-Inclusive euphoria continued spinning around me. I was wondering how to capture this moment, but was I not overreacting? It was just a dragonfly!?
I learned from one week of All-Inclusive in Antalya, Turkey. My first All-Inclusive vacation ever! First of all, it’s a really great way to unwind. There is absolutely nothing to worry about, your mind creates a lot of free space. It’s like deleting your e-mail Inbox. Gone, no more worries. I used that free space to come up with great ideas for my blog!
Secondly it creates the opportunity to think about and appreciate the things in life we tend to consider as normal: sunsets, you and your family together, a good talk with no hurries, the simple beauty of a wooden pier, drops of dew and of course dragonflies!
Wooden pier into the sea / Detail shot of the pier
The All-Inclusive concept
Before this vacation I had a very strong opinion about the All-Inclusive concept. It’s a totally different kind of vacation then we were used to. But you have to try it before you can judge it and so we did. It’s a great way of relaxing, especially if you travel with children.
We traveled to other destinations in Turkey on earlier occassions: Bodrum and Istanbul. If you do decide to try an All-Inclusive holiday, try to pick a country where you have been before. The All-Inclusive concept tends to lower your urge to go out and discover the country. And that’s something you do not want to regret later on, I can tell you that!
We stayed at the Hotel Titanic in Antalya, Turkey. This luxury hotel was built in 2003 and has the shape of a ship. The hotel has 589 rooms, 6000sqm of swimming pools, 4 restaurants, a wellness center, bowling alleys and more.
Hotel Titanic in Lara, Antalya
Antalya is a popular tourist destination on the Turkish mediterranean coast. The area’s around Antalya are well-known for its luxury hotels. The city itself has a historical town center known as the Kaleici. It offers beautiful harbour views and also a long string of souvenir shops.
Mosque in Antalya / Turkish national flags for sale
This blog post is dedicated to the dragonfly. Dragonfly symbolism is fascinating. In Japan there is great respect for the dragonfly, among others the animal is a symbol of happiness. Also the Chinese consider the dragonfly as a symbol of good luck, harmony and prosperity. It was a pleasure writing this post.
- Related post on my blog: Do you need to be a sentimental idiot to enjoy traveling?