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Trekking In Turkey
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Trekking In Turkey

1. Should I use a GPS? On the waymarked trails, the waymarks are renewed regularly and are usually enough to guide you. Take the map, compass and check the update page before you walk. If you are in doubt about your abilities to navigate, take and use a GPS. It could get you back on the trail when you've lost it; it could help you find water. But don't rely on it; be aware of your surroundings at all times. Download GPS points from relevant page of the Culture Routes in Turkey.

2. I don't want to carry a tent. Is there enough accommodation? The aim is to have accommodation available every night. See Accommodation pages on Culture Routes in Turkey.

Contact the Society to book your accommodation on the routes. There are now several travel agencies who do ‘self-guided’ holidays.

3. Can I stay in village houses? Yes. Many villagers are now offering bed and breakfast, often with evening meal. Look at the accommodation, agree a price and enjoy the company. Rural families sleep early and rise early and often share a communal room. Play with the baby, show some pictures, let the kids explore your rucksack. Pay for your accommodation/food at the rate of about 35-45TL per person per night for bed/breakfast and evening meal; add more for special services (lifts, laundry, extra food, etc).

4. How can I cook? Camping Gaz cylinders that you pierce open are available at several gaz shops (blue signs) in Antalya, Fethiye and Egirdir. Meths (ispirto) and methanol burners are available at hardware shops selling barbecue/kitchen equipment. Leadfree petrol for pump-up stoves is available from filling stations. are available at some hardware stores. You can light fires in many areas (use existing fireplaces). Take great care (especially in summer) and make sure that the fire is completely out when you leave - they can spread underground.

5. What about drinking water? All villages have a source of clean water, either a spring and drinking trough or at the village mosque and school. There are plenty more public water sources on most trails - springs or wells. You'll pass at least one source per day. BUT you may need a bucket/tin can and string to get water from wells. During/after the migration (June – end-October) you should purify well water with tablets or by boiling. You may see insects in the water. Fill the bottle completely, let them rise to the surface and wash them out of the neck of the bottle. Mosquito larvae are merely protein! Some wells and springs dry up in summer; the south-west section of the Lycian Way is the driest.

6. Can I wear shorts? Village Turks are not used to seeing bare skin - that is arms above the elbow and legs above the knee. In particular, please, men, don't trek with a bare chest, and both men and women should avoid short and/or tight shorts. In a village you should be properly dressed at all times. If intending to stay, you should also take the first possible opportunity to wash your hands and feet.

7. Can I get alcohol? Very few village stores or cafes sell beer or raki; almost none sell wine or spirits. In general, rural Turks don't drink. Most small towns have a source of beer; you may have to ask. Established tourist areas all have beer and may have wine or rakı. No-one will be offended if you drink beer (if you can find it)!

8. How many days' food do I have to carry? The most you may have to carry is 3 days food on the highest and longest sections. Even there, if you meet shepherds, they will probably offer you food. If there is no shop in a village, you can knock on a door and ask for simple food like bread (yufka) and cheese (peynir). Pay for what you take.

9. Is dehydration a problem? In summer, yes. Rest in the shade at midday, wear a hat, drink every time you find clean water. Add dehydration salts (GE-Oral) to your water; you'll recover more easily.

10. Should I use poles? Poles come into their own in winter snow, for stream crossings and long, steep downhills. They relieve knee damage. On other sections, they may snag on low bushes and scrub.




[updated, december 2012]

Middle Earth Travel
Trekking in Turkey by Kate Clow Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism