Tag Archives: Lycian Way

Olympos – a Day on the Lycian Way

12/30 – Climbing around the necropolis yesterday, Jim saw the red and white Lycian Way trail blazes that continued up the mountain. Today we waded across the inlet again, to follow the trail.

Nothing makes Jim happier than following a narrow path through the woods. image


We started in pine forest, with plenty of big rocks to scrabble up and downed tree trunks to navigate around.

Sometimes we had to climb over:image

Sometimes we had to limbo under:image

And some we just got around as best we could.image

Some trunks were rotting away:image

And some were becoming more beautiful as they aged.imageimage

There was lots to see on the ground.

Every now and then we reached a clearing, and could see the sky and the mountains beyond.imageimage

We trekked up, then turned around so we could be back across the inlet before dark. On the way back, we met backpackers from Russia, Ukraine and Austria, all out for a New Years hike. A beautiful day.

Happy New Year to you!image

Olympos – the Ruins on the Other Side

12/29 – today we decided to bring our sandals down to the inlet with us. Crossing the water barefoot for the last two days left our feet sore from all the sharp rocks. Wearing our sandals made all the difference – we practically danced across the inlet! Look how happy Jim is!

The ruins of Olympos on the far side are definitely visited less – not everybody wants to get wet! We had the ruins to ourselves all day.

Here are the remains of the theatre:



The Hamami (public baths):

The harbor basilica:

The weather changes quickly here. The sun is shining, a wind comes up, it rains for five minutes, then the sun comes out again.

When we had puttered in the ruins to our hearts’ content, we followed the trail markers for the Lycian Way. This led us to the Necropolis – a mountainside dotted with 354 tombs, dating from the 1st to the 3rd century CE. Some were elaborately decorated:imageimageimage

Many were just square openings with sliding rock doors: image


A fascinating day!

Olympos – the Chimaera on Mt. Olympos

12/27 – Olympos is the ultimate in laid back. It’s where you come to relax, as there really isn’t much to do here. It was exclusively a hippie haven until 2009, when paving the road to to town enabled more tourists to get here. We’re happy for the quiet. We realize that this is the first time since arriving in Turkey in November that we have not heard the call to prayer throughout the day.

We walked down the road to the beach, and past the ruins of ancient Olympos. We will come back to explore the ruins another day, but today we are on our way to Mt. Olympos, to see the Chimaera, or Mountain of Fire. This mountain is one of twenty mountains that share this name, the home of the Ancient Greek gods. This hike is part of the Lycian Way.

We walk along the beach, until we come to an area where we have to cross a tidal pool. It’s off with our boots and socks, roll up our pants and ford across. The beach is rocky and the current is swift, but we both live to tell the tale!


We continue to walk along the beach, then take the road at Çirali, another little hamlet of tree houses and huts.




When we see a sign, we know we’re getting close.


The Chimaera is a mythical creature with the head of a lion, the body of a goat and the tail of a serpent, which breathed fire. He was slain by Bellaphon, with the help of his winged horse, Pegasus.


Here we see our first turkey in Turkey!


We follow the path up the mountain.


Up, up….


…and up some more!


At the top of the mountain, eternal flames erupt from the rocks. Methane seeps out from the rocks and burns continually.




Both the Greeks and the Christians built temples here, and we walk among the ruins.


You can still see some painted decoration in a dome of the Christian church:

The view from the top of the mountain is gorgeous.image

Another beautiful day.

Kas – Another Day on the Lycian Way

12/22 – We started our hike today at the King’s Tomb, in the middle of town. This is also called the Lions Tomb, and dates from the 4th century BCE.



Every town we visit seems to have a statue of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the father of modern Turkey. The current government is working hard to reverse his westernization of the country by bringing back mandatory religious education, Arabic script, and censorship of the media. The NY Times ran two editorials this week about Turkey – said the EU is considering denying their application to join the European Union. I hope the unrest in the country is resolved peacefully.


Along the way, we see a helipad for the rich and famous:


We hiked west, to a deserted beach with crystal clear water. The pics can’t do justice to how beautiful the water is here on the Turquoise Coast.




We followed the trail up through a rocky area. Were these ruins, or just piles of rocks?



Off in the distance, we see another tomb, in the middle of nowhere. Of course, it was broken and looted. I wonder who it was built for? Unlike some of the other tombs, there is only room for one inside.



We’re grateful for another perfect hiking day, in the mid 60s, warm in the sun and cool in the shade.




One more sunset, please!


Kas – the Doric Tomb and the Ancient Theatre

12/21 – Another beautiful hiking day. Kas is on the Lycian Way, so we are continuing our day treks, wherever the trail takes us. Today we climbed up to a Doric tomb, 4th century BCE, freestanding and carved out of the bedrock, with a walkway all around. The sign said it was decorated with images of 24 dancing girls, but, try as we might, we could not see them. You can just make out some flowers carved inside.



There was room to sleep four – two slabs on each side. I tried to lie down for the full experience, but was a little too tall for the lower berth…


The trail wound down the hill to an ancient theatre, from the 2nd century BCE. It could seat 4000, and seated us while we ate our lunch.




Imagine our surprise when we were joined by a family of goats! The billy and the nanny really seemed to enjoy gamboling up and down the tiers.



The baby goat and Jim, checking each other out.


I’m still tickled to see flowers blooming in December.

On our way home, we found a sarcophagus and the ruins of a Hellanistic Temple, right in town.image



A man was feeding meat to the stray cats. He told us that he fed 100 a day. He asked for money to continue his good works, then was insulted when Jim only offered him two lira (about a dollar) and refused the money.

Another beautiful day.image


Ölüdeniz – Babadag and the Lycian Way

12/14 – One of the main reasons Jim wanted to come to this town is that it is the start of a 300 mile way-marked trail called the Lycian Way, or Likya Yolu. Without our tent and stove, we are not prepared to hike this long and challenging trail, but we would like to do some day treks to hike it part way. The man who rented us the apartment didn’t know much about it, so we are going to have to find it ourselves. There is a trail guidebook, but we haven’t figured out how to get Amazon to deliver it to Turkey!

We set out from our apartment on the road that leads up the mountain, figuring this would be the logical direction. It’s a beautiful afternoon for a brisk walk up a steep hill.image

On the way, we pass the Hotel California – who knew? image

Jim investigates an old water cistern.image

The town where we are staying caters to Brits on holiday, and there’s lots of construction of condos and villas up in the hills.image

Fortunately, the original residents haven’t all been driven out.


We see a sign and a flag at the top of the hill, and eventually reach it. It is not the Lycian Way, but the entrance to Babadag, where folks more adventurous than we come to parasail off the mountaintop over the ocean.image


A lovely trek, but no Lycian Way here.

12/15 – Next day we set out in the other direction, downhill toward the sea. image

We pass the group of old men downtown sipping tea. Guess every town has them. image

This time we find the right road:image image

The trail is marked with red and white blazes.image

We follow the trail to where we can see the Mediterranean Sea, and and walk the ridge until we can see the famous Blue Lagoon. The white sandy beach with clear turquoise water is where the sun worshipers flock all summer. It is a gorgeous sight.image




A beautiful day in December, where butterflies still fly and roses still bloom. Life is good!image