Guide to SKOPJE

Fethiye – a town of magical nature and turquoise colour

If towns and seas were named by their colour, then Fethiye would be called turquoise. It isn’t easy to see all of Fethiye in a few days. There is something for everybody. History, culture, beaches, water sports, best hang-gliding locations, impressive archeological sites, beautiful bays…

What would you say if I told you that Fethiye offers a chance to do winter sports? 80 kilometres from the town centre, on top of Eren Mountain (2677 m) you will find breathtaking landscapes and great skiing slopes. What would you say if I told you that Fethiye holds a wrestling tournament every year? I’m just saying, in case you are interested.

I’m not going to forget eco-tourism fanatics. Mugla region is abundant in monumental trees and the good news is that 12 of them grow round Fethiye. Palamida trees, platan trees and many other kinds proudly greet visitors, despite being 1000 years old.

Unbearable summer heat makes Fethiye residents and visitors migrate towards the highlands. Climbing up the plateaus has become a tourist attraction in recent years. Safari tours are very popular and the best place for such adventures is Seki Plateau.

If you are interested in rowing then you’ve come to the right address. The sea is calm and clear in Karagozler, where the Mediterranean Rowing Cup is held every year. Since you are in the most beautiful bay in Turkey you mustn’t miss the chance to go diving. Flora and fauna on the coast of Fethiye and Gocuk attract diving fans.

Boats usually set off early in the morning, between 9.00 and 10.00a.m. and return at 17.00p.m.  Dalyan Bay, Afkule Cave, Barakuda Reef and Sariyarlar Reef are the most interesting places for divers.Patara beach is a nature’s wonder with its 18 kilometres of fine sand and shallow sea. Constant winds make it a perfect spot for windsurfing. The beach is under protection as it is a nesting site for sea turtles. At the entrance of the beach, near the park, there are several restaurants.

So far, so good. But, how do you feel about mud? Surprised, aren’t you? Canoe tours are organized down Esen River, on the border between Antaliya and Mugla. The tour starts at 11.00a.m., lasts six and a half hours with a break for a mud bath.

If you’ve had enough of Fethiye heat, you can do something different for a day. Enter a deep, narrow gorge with scarce sunlight. Go down the cold waters and you’ll get to Saklikent (Hidden City).

The river is small, but runs wild all year round making it impossible to follow the flow. That is why there are wooden platforms suspended above the rushing waters. They are the only way to get to the river springs. There is gravel and rocks on the river bed so don’t forget to take an extra pair of shoes. The gorge is 18km long, getting very narrow at some places, uneven and difficult to walk. It is hard to get to the end. The best thing you can do is walk for a few hundred metres and go back.

The Valley of Butterflies is one of Fethiye’s most impressive sights. The valley is full of pine trees and rocks, and any kind of construction work is prohibited. After you climb to higher ground you will see the rocks and trees wrapped in a scarf of butterflies. To get to the valley you have to go to Oludeniz (Dead Sea) first to rent a boat that will take you to the valley’s sandy beach. There is no moss at the sea bed. It is covered by white sand.

To have a holiday in Oludeniz, the land of dreams, does not mean simply lying on the beach, but much more. You can watch Oludeniz, nature’s wonder, from 1969 metres of height, while you slowly hang-glide down from Babadag Mountain. If you like shopping, visit Paspatur Bazaar. When you get hungry, visit the restaurants close to Paspatur. They serve domestic food, kebabs and pide (Turkish flat bread). Seafood specialties are served in the restaurants by the sea.

Gulsah Cengiz