Heading North from Fethiye Turkey
Heading north From Fethiye you will go over the Kapi Mountains and catch glimpses of the sea. After you have gone past Dalaman you will pass the gold centre and the carpet factory (worth a visit if you have time) As well as been able to stop at a restaurant and take pictures of the Storks that nest in this area (look up into the trees that line the road and you might see some nests). You can arrange to go with a tour company, but they may not go down into Göcek or Koycegiz and you may find that you will spend some of your time in the gold centre or carpet factory as well as stopping at the road side restaurant for a break and then not getting a lot of time in Dalyan or at the mud baths or Iztuzu beach.
A lovely village that is built at the base of the Kapı Mountains on the western most tip of the Mediterranean between Dalyan and Fethiye. Although it was once a small fishing port it is now popular with Yachters. There is not much to do here as it is a lot quieter than Fethiye or Oludiniz. There are traces of ancient civilizations, one ruin called Batıkhamam (sunken hamam) is partly submerged and just like many other hamam’s in the area, it is referred by the locals as Cleopatra’s Bath.
A small sleepy town surrounded by pine forests orange groves and cotton fields. The lake is fed by the abundant steams that run from the mountains in the summer and winter. It is the over flow from the lake that run i nto the sea via the channel on which Dalyan lies. You can just stroll along the lake shores, then sit and relax in one of the shady tea gardens, take a short trip north to the water falls where you can enjoy a cooling dip (if your adventurous then you might want to jump in), visit Beyobasi village where there are two wooden platform restaurants built over the river or get boat trips from here down the channel to Iztuzu beach. Along side the lake and its channels are several thermal springs. The smallest one is known as Riza cavub girmasi then you have:
The Sultaniye (Kaplicalari) Thermal Baths
(across the lake from Koycegiz). Here you can bathe in naturally hot spring water, (approx. 40 Celsius). Because of the water’s curative properties (such as in cases of neuralgia, rheumatism and skin disorders of the liver, spleen and bowels), many Turkish elderly make pilgrimages to the bat hs. These baths were first used in Caunon times, followed by the Byzantines, who rebuilt the accommodations. The remains of the buildings from that period are now submerged under the waters of the lake. Just a few hundred metres away from here you will find the connecting medium size spring called Gelgirme Velibel that is more popular because of its mud:
The Mud Baths: It was restored and opened to tourists Here you can smother yourself in the “beauty” mud then stand in the sun and wait for it to dry before rinsing it off under a shower then stepping into the natural warm clear water sulphur pool with temperatures also of around 40 Celsius. The mud cleanses and tones your skin but is also said to remedy rheumatism and has anti-ageing properties. The warm ware because it contains a high ratio of sulphur helps to soften the skin and eliminate wrinkles. It is a 10 min boat trip to/from
An area of outstanding natural beauty and interest; it also has the widest variety of wildlife in the area. S ome of the bird species found here are not found anywhere else in the world. It lies on the east bank of the channel that joins the Mediterranean and Köycegiz Lake. The town has lots of places to eat and buy things from. If you want to start yo ur trip along the channel from here (most organised trips do) and not in Koycegiz as there are plenty of boats available at the harbour. The channel forms a network of small lakes and waterways through beds of reeds that can be up to 5 meters high giving you a feeling of mystery and romance. It is not hard to understand why the Directors etc. of the African Queen choose this place to make the film. The water is a mixture of fresh and salt water and home to many fish, other water life and the many bird species that feed on them. As you travel along you will pass the 2300-year-old Lycian cliff tombs to;
On the west bank of the channel is not a Lycian city but Carian one even though the rock tombs are typically Lycian is yet another of turkey’s ancient cities. The first settlement here was believed to have been 3000bc and grew into a major port on the boarder between Lycia and Caria. A lot of the city is still to be u ncovered so it is debatably the second greatest archaeological site in Turkey. There is plenty to see here including, the city walls that are up to 8m high and well preserved in places, Acropolis Hill- 150m high and capped by Hellenistic ruins, a theatre that has two arched entrances and if you manage to get to the 34th row of seats then you will get a wonderful view across the city, baths, four temples, an agora, stoa, nymphain, palestra, churches and a cistern.
The Iztuzu sandbar
Separates the sea from the channel; it stretches for 5 km from the channel mouth. The fine sand and shallow sea make it a perfect place to spend some time soaking up the sun but be warned that there are strong currents where the river joins the sea. It is also one of the few places so that the endangered loggerhead turtles (Caretta Caretta) make their nests therefore it is closed to the public after 8:00 pm to aloe the turtles to come ashore and lay their eggs. If you don’t fancy the boat trip and the chance to see turtles swimming by then you can get to the beach by road. The route is charming and as you approach you will have a lovely view of the delta. The beach here is much more attractive and pleasantly sheltered.