Kemer

The county of Kemer contains a 100 km segment of the Lycian Way, which is part of the Via Eurasia in Turkey. The route within the county was first waymarked and signposted in 1998 and includes 7 days of trekking on footpaths, old roads and forestry tracks.

Kemer Today

Situated in the outskirts of West Taurus Mountains, 43 km away from Antalya, the town with its 52 km coastline, is one of the most important tourism spots in Turkey. The district has a population of 36,000 and the town itself has 21,000 inhabitants.

One of the major attractions of Kemer is its natural beauty; sea, mountains and pine forest combine in harmony. Clean sea, green forests waves reaching the pine trees and beaches under the shade of pine trees seem very attractive. The shore from Beldibi to Tekirova consists of unspoiled beaches in bays of various sizes.

Most of the area from Antalya Free Trade Zone to Çavuş (Adrasan) district is reserved as “Olympos Beydağları National Park”. There are one-day excursion, recreation and picnic places in the park. Generally, visitors head first for Phaselis, then Olympos.

Kemer is also an important place in terms of yacht tourism. The Park Marina was commissioned in April 1986 with a capacity of 300 yachts.

Kemer Marina, Tekirova, Göynük, Beldibi, Çamyuva and Kiriş beaches were awarded the Blue Flag in 1993 by the Foundation for Environment Education in Europe (FEEK). Visitors can enjoy cruises starting from Kemer or Antalya or fishing or diving day trips. More Info

History Of Kemer

Kemer was the ancient Greek city Idyros, a member of the Lycian League. A road ran inland towards Termessos, which occasionally disputed territory with the Lycians. Later a Byzantine castle and a Selçuk hunting lodge was built on this road, which also connected with Antalya. After the Ottoman era, Idyros was known as Eski Köy (Old Village) until, in 1916 – 1917, a 23 km (14 mi) long stone wall was built to channel the mountain stream water and protect the town from flooding, which until then had been a persistent problem. The name Kemer refers to those walls.

Until the 1960’s there was no road connection and the district was accessible only by boat. Then a road was built and from the 1980s onwards this was followed by a great investment in infrastructure, planned by the state and funded by the World Bank, aimed at developing a large tourist industry. Wikipedia Page

Interesting Places in Kemer

Kemer Gorge

The Kemer Gorge is a 4km long, high-sided gorge; a narrow road runs through it; the river sparkles over boulders and, where they can get a hold, pines cling to the slopes. 1km into the gorge is a riverside restaurant and, at the far end of the gorge, a café next to an intact Roman bridge.

Şeytan Kayalar / Devil’s Rocks

Şeytan Kayalar / The Devil’s Rocks are a local landmark of twin outcrops of well-worn granite, rising about 50m above the level plain and pines. In spite of their attractive appearance and accessibility, rock climbers do not use them.

Phaselis

This romantically sited Lycian port was founded by colonists from Rhodes as in the 7th century BC. Its wealth came from the shipment of timber, rose oil and perfume. The extensive ruins are arranged around three bays, each with a small beach, and scattered through the pine forests. Much of what’s left dates from Roman and Byzantine times.

 

Mount Tahtalı 2366 m

Mount Tahtali, one of a number of mountains also known as Mount Olympos, towers above the town of Kemer. At 2,365 meters above sea level, it is capped in snow through from autumn to spring: only in the summer is the peak exposed. A teleferique to the summit rises from the main road close to Phaselis; on the top is a café/restaurant.

 

 

Kadrama / Gedelma Castle

Situated 12km west of Kemer in Güneşli-Gedelma environs is a well-built Byzantine castle with cellars or caves below, dated to the 9th century AD. The name refers to “the place of wheat drying, and a kind of wheat pit”. This place may have guarded the road from the interior to the coast so been important for the entire region; nearby abundant springs and many ancient plane trees. A buttonwood tree is estimated to be 2500 years of age.

 

Göynük Canyon

Göynük Canyon, 4km from Göynük, is one of the most beautiful canyons with trees, waterfalls and pools. It offers 4 – 5 km hiking and canyoning trip, with natural pools and lagoons. You can swim in ice-cold water or you can climb up the rocks to see the waterfalls.

 

Selcuk Hunting Lodge

Situated in the forest near Kemer along the Antalya – Kumluca highway, the Selcuk hunting lodge is dated to 1230 – 1248. One of the three Selcuk hunting lodges known today, it is the only building in the Turkish-Islamic art tradition. Although the entrance of the lodge and the walls were demolished, most of the roof and the walls are still in good condition.

 

Maden

Behind the beaches south of Tekirova was a chrome mine. Several tunnels, some buildings where the ore was crushed and a jetty where the ships moored to load the ore still remain amongst the trees.

Stages

  1. Göynük – Göynük Yaylasi 11.3 kmThis long day’s walk is mainly uphill on good mule path; there is plenty of water and shade. The route takes the old migration route up the Göynük Valley following the gorge, crossing the river twice, and continuing through the forest. The most difficult and pleasurable part is crossing the river in the canyon in spring, if the river is high, you may have to wade, but later in the year it’s easy; nearby is a pool and waterfall where you could swim. The Göynük valley in any season is silent, green and beautiful in autumn and early spring it is enlivened by the flashing flypast of flocks of tits and the acid pink of wild cyclamen. Later, silver veined leaves with velvet undersides are a more subtle delight. There is a hilltop hotel or a small pension near the finish on Göynük Yaylası.
  1. Göynük Yaylası – Roman Bridge 14.8 kmThe scenery is quite beautiful, for the riverbed has a variety of strata and coloured rocks and the valley sides are clad in deep green firs, lime-green planes and scatterings of broom and oleander. This route branches at a junction near the top, with the high route heading towards Tahtalı leaving the path going upwards on your right. Most of the route is on forest track, but, because of landslide damage, in several places you have to scramble across washouts or cross the shallow stream to bypass a slide. This varied and energetic route instead climbs down from the ridge towards the sea.
  1. Roman Bridge – Tekirova 16 kmThis easy route runs mainly on farm or forestry track with some footpaths. From the Roman Bridge and the entrance to the Kemer Gorge, the route loops around Aşağı Kuzdere and Şeytan Kayalar (Satan’s Rocks), ascending to a wooded ridge top with views over the coast. Follow the coast, it passes through the ancient city of Phaselis, then by the Sundance holiday camp, through farmland and woods to Tekirova, where there are shops and small pensions.
  1. Tekirova to Çıralı via Maden 20.4 kmThis tough, long route runs on mining trail, footpath and mulepath through an area of low but rugged hills, partly wooded and divided by winding valleys. The route starts by following an old track which once linked Beycik with Tekirova, then turns to follow a mining track, running parallel to the sea after an old mine. There is one unreliable water point, behind a beach. The route ends in Çıralı, a popular holiday spot which has a beautiful 4 km long beach.
  1. Göynük Yaylası – Yayla Kuzdere 11.5 kmThis route splits from the route running from Göynük Yaylası to the Roman Bridge just before a water tank near the pass which divides the Kemer from the Göynük valley. Some areas of forest have been recently cut, so there are good views down the valley. It passes through the village of Gedelme, where there is accommodation and food, then comes to the head of the Kemer valley and ends with an easy walk on undulating forest tracks into Yayka Kuzdere village.
  1. Yayla Kuzdere to Beycik over Tahtalı Dağı 10.1 kmThis route climbs up to a village on the northern slope of Tahtalı Dağı / Mount Olympos, over a pass, and down into a valley. The clear forest paths zigzag through beautiful cedar forest; only a short section is above the tree-line. If you want to make a diversion to the summit, allow at least an extra 4hrs. In this case, you could camp out on the pass and make the ascent in the early morning. Some points to note: there is no water at the campsite; mornings are usually clear and mist does not rise until 11am, making the ascent safer and giving you a chance of a view; snow patches on the N face last until April.
  1. Beycik to Çıralı 16.5 kmAt the beginning of the route, the views open out to glimpses of sunlit forests, sea and Üç Adalar / Three Islands. From the village of Beycik, it climbs through the foothills of Tahtalı to the streams and trout farms at Ulupinar. The route then continues along an undulating valley over clear and pleasant paths up to a ridge and down again, passing many beautiful plane trees. This easy but steep section is an almost continues descent, mainly on footpath with some track or road near the end.

Transport

Because there is easy main road access from Antalya, Kumluca, Kaş to Kemer town, Tekirova and Göynük, parts of the route are very suitable for day-hikers as well as long-distance trekkers. But there is no public transport to Gedelme or Yayla Kuzdere.

Accommodation

There are a variety of accommodations along the route; camps, pensions and village house accommodations.

                        


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