Following the Ancient Carian Paths
The road passes through the outskirts of Marmaris and the resort of Icmeler then disappears twisting up into pine forested mountains….
The Bozburun peninsula is situated in the south west corner of Turkey, its wild and rugged beauty are a breath of fresh air after the mass tourism of Marmaris. The sparsely populated peninsula is home to less than twenty thousand inhabitants. The small town of Bozburun is the administrative centre of the region and famous for traditional boat building. Its sheltered bays and inlets are home to many craft during the winter months when they are hauled on land and propped up on wooden supports for repair and overhaul. In summer boats of all shapes and sizes can be seen at anchor or tied up at the harbor fronts all over the peninsula.
The top half of the peninsula is mountainous and forested with steep slopes rising from sheltered coastal inlets. Travelling south, the forest gives way to a barren rocky landscape with scattered ruins half submerged or hill top fortifications protecting hidden valleys’ and sheltered ports.
For the walker the remoteness is ripe for exploration and with a lack of roads the old trails and paths have been cleaned to access every viewpoint across the sea to the Greek islands of Symi and Rhodes. The Trail routes through a diversity of terrain with many changes of scenery and magical views round every corner.
The Datca region stretches along a narrow peninsula to its western extremity of Cape Crio where the Aegean meets the Mediterranean sea. The isthmus is also known as the Resadiye Peninsula, from the beginning of the twentieth century honouring the penultimate Ottoman sultan Mehmed V Resad. Resadiye is also a village close to the main town of Datca. Apart from the main town of Datca this mountaineous slither of land is scarcely populated. Much of the peninsula is protected and the maquis forests rising from the northern shores are home to many ‘dağ kecesi’ wild mountain goats and endemic plant species. With its numerous bays and secluded coves untouched by development, under sail has been the most popular way to explore the dramatic coastline. This walking section starts from Datca heading south and west along rugged coastal headlands to the ancient city of Knidos and Deveboynu lighthouse at the end of the cape. The view looks across to The Greek Islands of the Dodecanese. Turning east along the mostly uninhabited northern shore the section ends at the narrowest point (Balıkasiran) of the peninsula. Our Walks. 5 or 6 days . Hikes between 13 to 16 km.
Day 1. Pick-up from Dalaman Airport at pre-agreed time. When all the group have met, we transfer to Marmaris in a private vehicle. Drive time approximately 90 Min. Group welcome dinner. Comfortable hotel in Town centre. HB.
Day 2. Trek from Icmeler to Amos
We start our walk from Icmeler, which is believed to be the beginning of the Carian trails. From a bumpy path, accompanied by pine and sandalwood trees; we arrive at the town of Turunc while watching the views of Icmeler, Marmaris Strait and Paradise Island. We proceed along the coast and enter the path again and reach the ancient city of Amos, accompanied by wonderful views. We visit the ancient city dating back to 2200 B.C. and return to the hotel by car. The total length of the path is 9 km. Between Icmeler and Turunc it reaches a height of 300 m. It takes 4 to 5 hours in total.
Day 3. Trek from Amos to Bayır (SYRNA)
A vehicle will pick up us and drive to Kumlubuk (Amos), where today’s trek begins. The trail starts through pine forest with wonderful views. After 45 minutes we reach the ruins of the Gerbe church and the ancient settlement. From here, the path gradually ascends and reaches the hills with a view of Ciftlik Bay at an altitude of 350 m. Leaving Ciftlik cove behind, we pass through the centuries-old olive trees and Mediterranean cypress trees, and reach the village of Bayir via the path next to Yancak Hill, where the remains of the Syrna acropolis are located. In the Hellenistic era, the temple of Syrna Asklepios was quite famous. Today's mosque was built on the foundations of this temple. The plane tree in Bayir village square is 2000 years old. According to belief, if one turns around the tree 7 times, one's wishes come true. As in the history of Bayir, today it is a village known for its olive oil and pine honey. Total Trail 14 km. Max. Height 380 m.
Day 4. Trek from Bayır (Syrna) to Sogut (Thyssanos)
A vehicle will pick up us and drive to near Bayir. Then we start the trail by getting off the vehicle at the 3rd kilometer of the Bayir - Sogut road. The path, which proceeds in nature, far from civilization, gradually rises. We reach Taslica village by proceeding in company with the vast Mediterranean and Rhodes Island views. Proceeding through the village, we go down to Sogut village with a wonderful view. Return to the hotel by car. 15 km.
Day 5. Trek from Sogut to Bozburun (Tymnos)
A vehicle will pick up us and drive to Söğüt. The trail starts at Sogut coast. It rises from the coast following the ruins of the ancient port and descends to the coast of Kizilyer district. From here, it rises with a view of Sogut Bay and its islands and goes down to the Bozburun shipyard area. Rising from the back of the shipyard, you reach Bozburun center with wonderful views. 14 km.
Day 6. Trek from Murdala Bay to Knidos (Alternative)
Driving through Datca’s Yazi village, we get off at a suitable point. We reach the beach by moving on dirt roads and enter the path. Accompanied by the unique views of the Gulf of Gokova, the pathway connecting beautiful beaches, ascends and reaches the ancient city of Knidos. 12 km. max. Height 280 m.
Day 7. Bayır – Turgut selalesi – Hydas
We get off the vehicle on the Osmaniye - Bayır road. We reach Turgut waterfall valley by following a green path. The flowing water, small waterfalls and ponds in the valley offer a great visual feast to the hikers. Continuing from the valley, we visit the pyramid tomb. After seeing the tomb belonging to the soldier / athlete Diagoras and his wife Aristomakha, who lived in the Hellenistic age, we continue on the path and reach the ancient city of Hydas. The ruins of the acropolis with artifacts from the Archaic period date back to the Hellenistic age. After visiting the ancient city of Hydas, our walk will end on the beach of Turgut village ends. 15km.
Day 8.Transfer to Dalaman airport
Accomodations Our stay will be in 4 to 5* hotels HalfBoard. All hotels with swimming pools, wifi, etc.
We recommend wearing walking boots on all our walks, as these provide the best ankle support and grip. Windproof/waterproof jacket (with hood) and waterproof trousers – these are essential at all times of the year. Shorts and Tshirts - lightweight wicking materials are best. Warm fleece & trousers Sun protection – hat, sunglasses and sun cream.
Clothing: Fleece or other purpose designed synthetic tops give good lightweight insulation and nylon or cotton trousers can provide unrestricted movement. A layering system is better than one thick top. Lightweight hat and gloves
Rucksack: this needs to be large enough to carry your picnic lunch, drink, waterproofs and spare clothing. A size of 25-30 litres is probably best. A waterproof liner as well as a rucksack cover will keep the contents dry should you be unlucky enough to encounter any rain. Water bottle: a size of at least 2 litres is recommended.
Sun protection: high factor sun screen and lip salve Personal First Aid Kit: containing for example plasters, insect, repellent, antiseptic wipes, painkillers, blister kit, tape and personal medication.
Camera/binoculars – your choice. Trekking poles - many people find these aid balance and take some of the strain off their knees during steeper descents