Lycian Wildlife Trek Description
A unique look at the magnificent wildnerness of Lycia through the eyes of our guide, Christian Kollinsky, a trained biologist and local wildlife expert. The programme involves several walks, some quite long, all based at a very comfortable mountain lodge located in Beycik village at an altitude of 800m below the precipitous south face of Mt Olympos – Tahtali 2365m. Lycia has the highest biodiversity in the Middle East. There are 1800 species of plant and it is a refuge for endangered animal species such as the Monk Seal and Loggerhead Turtle. We will try to show you some of the fascinating diversity and beauty of the area.
Although some of our tours follow the justifiably popular Lycian Way, two of the walks are well off the beaten track. Only a lightweight daypack need be carried and each evening we will return to our mountain lodge.
This trip is almost identical to the “Olympos Explorer” but the base is fixed at a mountain lodge and the programme has been slightly re-arranged. Lycian Wildlife Trek is for those who prefer a comfortable base located in the cooler mountain air and a very tranquil setting
Itinerary of Lycian Wildlife Trek
- Day 1 – Arrive in Antalya. Private transfer to the mountain village Beycik (1hr 30min). If there is time we will organize a short walk through Beycik and give you a first impression of the rich variety of Mediterranean flora. Evening slideshow: Flora & Fauna of Lycia.
- Day 2 – Laodikeia Starting from the hotel we gain a forest track high on the slopes of Tahtali. Along the way there is a superb panorama of the sea, the Adrasan peninsula and Beycik. We now descend to the ruins of the ancient Roman city of Laodikeia. The city was situated in a spectacular place, above a rock band on a steep slope at 1000m altitude. In the hidden ruins we can search for the Agora (meeting place), old doorways, and cisterns. On the return journey to our lodge we stop for lunch by a beautiful spring then follow shepherds paths passing ancient cultivation terraces overgrown by a variety of trees and bushes, like the carob tree, myrtle, kermes oak and olive tree. 5 hours walking, 250m of ascent.
- Day 3 – The Gelidonia PeninsulaTransfer (60min) to the starting point. We hike along a pleasant forested trail through fine coastal scenery passing bays and Roman ruins to reach the beautifully situated Gelidonia lighthouse. The route then twists and turns amongst limestone crags, sometimes under pine trees and sometimes on open slopes. A population of the endangered Mediterranean monk seal (Monachus monachus) is reported to inhabit the wild coast below. We climb a ridge with good views over the peninsula with its surrounding islands then continue through woods to the beautiful Adrasan bay. 5-6 hours walking, 500m of ascents.
- Day 4 – Yanartas (Chimaera)Short transfer (20min) to Ciragli, a small coastal village set amongst fruit orchards with a beautiful beach. Here between May and September the endangered sea turtles (Caretta caretta) come onto the beach to lay their eggs. We walk through the lush gardens of the village with groves of orange, lemon, apple, plum, pomegranate and apricot trees. A short ascent takes us to Yanartas (the burning stones), where, according to Homer’s legend, the Chimaera, a terrifying, fire-breathing monster is said to have lived. The trail now leads into a wooded valley. We cross and follow streams to Ulupinar, where several springs feed into a single river. We have lunch in one of the riverside restaurants that offer good trout dishes. In the afternoon we follow trails leading up through forests and meadows back to Beycik. 5-6 hours walking, 700m ascent.
- Day 5 – Mount Tahtali We leave the village behind and walk up to an idyllic mountain meadow to reach a steep mountain path through old mixed forests. Along the way, you can admire rare specimens of ancient cedar of Lebanon as well as old juniperus trees, cypress and hop hornbeam. Finally we reach a pass below the snow-covered slopes of Tahtali (2365m). A long beautiful descent past meadows and springs with chances to spot or hear bird species like Ruppell’s Warbler, Hoopoe, Middle Spotted Woodpecker and others takes us to Yayla Kuzdere. From here we transfer (60min) back to Beycik. 6 hours walking, 700m ascent.
- Day 6 – Boat Tour and Hiking North of Adrasan there is a wild stretch of coastline with many remote bays, some only accessible by boat. We will explore the area landing on a remote beach. There will be several opportunities to swim and lunch will be served by the crew of the boat. Whoever wants to hike can walk along the coast trail from Adrasan and meet the boat group in one of the bays. The boat trip continues to the ruins of Olympos. Olympos was one of the most important cities of Lycia, because of its strategic position at the coast. We have time to explore the ruins and enjoy the rich wildlife in the area including the colourful kingfisher hunting by the nearby streams. Then we walk along the beach to Ciragli. Transfer back to Beycik. 3 hours walking, 250m ascent.
- Day 7 – Üc Oluk Yayla (Üc Oluk mountain pasture).This tour starts from the lodge to the east of Beycik. We walk through forests with red and black pine to reach a small mountain pasture with a giant oak tree. We continue along shepherd paths to ascent through pine, cypress and cedar forests to the mountain pastures of Üc Oluk. Here in summer nomads set up their tents with herds of sheeps and goats. On the mountain pastures a rich flora with many species of lilies, orchids, sunflowers, anemones genistas and many others can be found. We hike through the pastures to a scenic place where we have organized a typical Turkish picnic for you. Later transfer to Beycik 5 hours walking, 500m ascent.
- Day 8 – If we have time we will visit a beautiful situated yayla (small mountain farm) in Beycik to see how a Turkish sheperd farmily lives. Opportunity to buy goat cheese. Transfer to Antalya airport.
Prices of Lycian Wildlife Trek
Scheduled trek prices (minimum group size 6 people) €1060 per person
PRIVATE GROUPS ARE AVAILABLE FOR A MINIMUM OF 2 PEOPLE ALL YEAR ROUND. PLEASE CONTACT US FOR DETAILS
To see what’s included & not included in your safari package, and for general information on what to take with you, see the PDF below
Further Information of Lycian Wildlive Trek
For more information about: what to take on your trip, visa and packing list: