The city of Alanya is a fabuluous flower stone that has blossomed at the foot of the most beautiful Taurus mountains. The mountain range stretches along the southern coast of the Mediterranean Sea, surrounding the Anatolian Gulf from all sides. The Taurus Mountains may be called both Taur and Taurus from the European term "taur", which means "an elevation". The Taurus Mountains have a length of 1600 km from West to East, from the Aegean Sea to the Euphrates, capturing the historical areas of Lycia, Kariya, Kilikia, and Pamphylia. In the east, the mountains reach up to 3,500 meters, and in the western part they gradually drop to 2,000 meters, completetely blocking the approach to the sea (there is only a narrow pass that is opening near the city of Adana - the famous Kilikia Gates passage).
The mountains that create an impression as if they are embracing Alanya from all the sides, except the sea, is a true land of fairy-tales! The mountains are famous for their relict, coniferous, and deciduous forests, deep valleys, majestic canyons, fabuluous stalagmite and stalactite caves, picturesque alpine meadows, swift waterfalls, and the rivers. In the heart of the mountains, there is a famous lake called Egirdir, which is well known for the historical sightseeing in the area. The Taurus Mountains are covered by the evergreen forests that stretch along the entire coast. A thousand years ago, the Turkmen tribes came here looking for good pastures in the mountains for their animals. The nomads adapted for wintering in the lowlands and over the time, the first stationary settlements have been formed here. Using the mountains roads, the goods and the people have been transported, especially those who have arrived to the port cities of the bay. In the magnicient Escher valley, there is an ancient city called Xantos, whose past is closely intertwined with mythology. Alanya is famous for its magical mountain landscapes, which attract each person for taking a fascinating walking tour, a jeep trip, and rafting adventure through the mountain rivers. The mountains are an extraordinary beautiful creation of nature that simply has to be seen! Once in the mountains, a person instantly feels free and learns to overcome all the obstacles of life.
Coming to Alanya, a lot of people give their preference to leisure at the seaside, yet as a result, it appears that they also need to... have some rest after such times of leisure! It is no wonder that it is so because the sea resort has quite a lot of sun, a lot of rest at the beach, and lots of entertaining vanity. Now the mountains is a completely different thing! They will help to make the times of leisure varied because the time that you spend "at the top of the world" is a time that you will always remember, the time when you can enjoy the true freedom and a true beauty!
As you climb up the mountains, it influences you like nothing else for the new achievements and boosts you with the confidence and courage. The nature of the mountains that surround Alanya from all the sides just fascinates everyone who encounters it! The coast of the Turkish Riviera, the heart of which is Alanya, is an endless, continuous mountain range made out of wooden slopes that are crossed by the numerous river valleys where you can easily go rafting.
In some places the mountains are closely approaching the shore, breaking down to the sea with the sheer cliffs, and in the others, on the contrary, retreat away by forming the narrow coastal valleys. It is here in the mountins that you are greeted by the magnificient coves with the beaches that attract the endless flocks of the tourists and the locals alike. The northern slopes of the Taurus Mountains imperceptibly turn into the Anatolian plateau. At an altitude of about 1000 meters, the Taurus mountains are covered with the maquis - the thickets of the evergreen bushes, the undersized trees (myrtle, laurel, cistus, strawberry trees, heather tree) and the high grass. Hiking mong such kind of nature turn into an endless photographing session of the surroundings. With an increase in height (about 2400 meters), there start the real forests (oak, cypress, pine, fir, Lebanese cedar), alternating by the thickets of juniper and the alpine meadows.
The Turks have a beautiful and a touching legend about how the Taurus Mountains have appeared. A long time ago the god called Taurus fell in love with a mortal lady and she fell in love with him as well. Once the beloved of Taurus went to the forest and was bitten by a snake. The girl fell ill and died. Taurus was suffering so much that he wanted to die and follow his beloved into the Kingdom of the dead. He tried to kill himself, but nothing worked - the gods are immortal. Then Taurus turned to his brother Zeus and asked him to kill him. Zeus agreed to do so, yet under one condition - Taurus has to leave some memory about himself in the world of people. This is how the Taurus Mountains have appeared - Taurus has created them before his death.
Saparade Canyon – one of the Turkish canyons that are located in about 48km to the north from Alanya and in 20 km from Demirtas. Canya became quite popular among the tourists after the Municipality of Alanya has constructed a special pedestrian pathway there. The pedestrian route is about 700 meters long. Thanks to this walking path, you can discover the nature that is beautiful beyond any words, the great views, and also enjoy the mountain air. The canyon forms unusual waterfalls. You also have an opportunity to swim in the mountain's stream. The waterfall also has a special place for swimming. We should note that it is always cool in the canyon and the temperature of water does not increase twelve degrees by Celcius even in the warmest days. The tourist pedestrian route also has cafe and a restaurant where you can have some rest after the walk and taste the meals of the national Turkish kitchen.
Sapadere Waterfall - a unique pearl of Turkey is in about 45 km away from Alanya and in three kilometers from the Sapadere village to the side of the eponymous canyon, which is also a natural complex. At the very end of the pedestrian path, walking about 300 meters from the entrance to the canyon, your eyes will see one of the most unforgetable views - the Sapadere waterfall. The water in the natural pool barely reaches 12 degrees even at the peak of the summer heat, which allows the bravest to swim in refreshing cool waters.
The Castle of Alanya has been built in XIII century by the Aalladin Keykubat Sultan upon even more ancient ruins of the Romanian military fortifications. The building is quite spacey and includes about a hundred of towners in it, almost one hundred and fifty bastions. In the courtyard you can see such famous monuments as the Ashabe Sultun tomb, the mosque of Suleiman the Magnificient, the palace of the sultan-founder of the fortress, which is named after him, and many other absolutely wonderful buildings from both archaeological and tourist points of view. The construction is truly majestic and delights not only with its impressive size (the fortress has been built during twelve years!), but also with its rich history, which hides lots of mysteries and the secrets. As an illustration of the whole life of the fortress, the near is the museum with the treasures of Turkish art and the various archaeological finds of the area from this particular location.
The most ancient part of Alanya, so called Old City, pierced with the narrow little streets and filled with a variety of numerous monuments, located on a high hill. This elevation is like separating the city for two parts - historic and a modern one with the many shops, restaurants, and the cozy cafes across the shore. In the antique epoch this city has been the capital of Pamphilia, and some time after here was settled the summer residence of the Selcuk Sultans. Back then the city had a different name - Korokesion, the famous sea haven. For a long time it has been a haven for the pirates. Speaking of those far away times, one of the most ancient among them are the walls of Byzantum times castle. Their length consists of about 8 km. Let us remind you that the ancient builders worked for about 12 years in order to construct and finish this monumental construction.
The Caves have always attracted people with their depth, unknowingness, and the mysteries that are hidden in their mild dusk. We are always ask these question of a modern day and seek for answers to all of them not only in the present time. Our vision is not only turned towards the future. We are striving for learning more of our initial primitive past. Studying the caves of Alanya, we always ask ourselves: "How could the nature create such a perfect beauty?"
A number of the caves in Alanya has romantic names to them like "Pirate's Cave", "Lover's Cave", and "Blinking Cave", - all of them are covered by the special boat-and-footwalk trips that always attract more and more people who are eager to see and appreciate the natural beauty of the different corners of the Turkish Riviera. For example, the "Blinking Cave" received its name because of the phosphorus deposits on the arches of the cave. At night time, this particular cave has an incredibly unique look and a level of mysteriousness just goes beyond any words and descriptions! One should not only read about it because it simply has to be seen!
The famous Damlatas cave (Damlata Maaras). They call it a cave of the wet stones and it is located at the very center of the city, not far from the western foot hill of the peninsula. The name of the cave consists out of two words: damla - a water drop, ta - a stone, so you can translate it from Turkish literally as "raw precious or semiprecious stone" or a "stalactat". Once you are inside this cave, there is an impression as if you has been transferred to a fairy-tale like cave filled with the magic treasures of Alladdin. All of this amazing beauty has been created piece by piece by the nature during many centuries! All what can be seen by the visitors of the Damlatas cave has been literally created only by the drop of water. Gradually leaking, the droplets hung, fell, and epovarated. They are still here - upon the walls and on the ceiling - in the stalactites and stalagmites. Damlatas cave is located in 100 meters from the sea shore. At the entrance to the cave, there is a narrow passage that is 50 meters long, which leads one out into the cylindrical cavity. Inside the cave one can see truly fantastic formations of the multi-color stalactites and stalagmites, the age of which is equal to 15.000 years. The main spot of their gathering is a cavity that is 13-14 meters wide and 15 meters in height. The cave has two floors and its total dimension is 2500 meters.
The Damlatas Cave in Alanya has been hidden from the human eye for a long time until it has been found by occassion. This discovery took place in the middle of the twentieth century. The cave has been discovered in 1948 during the construction works as the sea haven has been built. There was a quarry in this place and right after the explosion that was done with an aim of acquiring the stones for the construction of the ferry pier, an entrance to the famous cave has revealed. Inside it, there were stalactites and stalgmites discovered of a rare beauty. The Damlatas Cave has been taken under protection and they started to research it.
Temperature in the Damlatas cave is constantly at +22'C - +23'C degrees, the humidity is more than 90-98%. Analysis of the air has shown that it contains about 10-12 times more carbon dioxide than it is the norm in the air. In this cave there is indeed, a pretty big amount of carbon with a relatively small amount of radioactivity. Damlatas Cave in Alanya is one of the very few caves that have been intentionally adapted for the tourist visits. The visiting of this particular cave is useful for those suffering from asthma. The healing factors here are teh stable temperature, very high humidity, increased presence of carbon dioxide, a bit of radioactivity that is really low, and the ionization of the air. We are wholeheartedly recommending you to visit this cave. You will receive amazing aesthetic delight and will instantly feel an inflow of good health and strength.
The Cuceler Magarasi or the "Dwarfs Cave", - a very popular tourist sightseeing in Alanya, which is open for the visitors since 2012. It is located on the territory of the Tirilar village, not far from the Sapadere canyon. According to a legend, a local inhabitant, a dwarf, ran away from home by hiding from the violence of his older brother. He settled in the cave and the locals, finding out about it, called it the "Dwarfs Cave". During the Ottoman Empire times, the livestock breeders hid livestock here, hiding from the taxes. The cave is 150 meters long and includes six galleries inside. The temperature inside the cave is 12 degrees lower than what it is on the outside. There are stalactites and stalagmites inside the cave that are shining with all the colours of a rainbow. There is a viewing platform at the entrance to the cave with a magnificent view of the valley, enchanting every visitor with a variety of colors and a pure forest air.
The Lovers Cave is located in the south of Alanya, not far from the city's castle. Back in the earlier times this place had a nasty reputation. The pirates have been living there who kept all what they could steal here, as well as the slaves whom they have captured. The cave is desolated and lonely today, so only the tourists can help it to cheer up. They say that the people who were truly in love used to hide in this cave, wishing to hide from the eyes of other people. However, it is quite hard to get into this cave and only the truly brave and courageous people go there by swimming. There is a legend that if one jumps down from the other side of the cave with a beloved one, which is 8 meters high hill, then the pair will never ever sever. Still, in order to make it possible, one has to swim across all the cave, which is 72 meters, and climb on a pretty steep ledge.
The Pirates Cave is located in the southeast part of the cape, close to the middle ages castle of the city of Alanya. According to a legend, in the past times it served as a pirate's cache for storing of the looted goods and as a prison for the captives. The locals say that the cave has an exit directly to the territory of the fort. In the present times it is almost entirely flooded, so getting inside is possible only with a special equipment. It is possible to see it from the side of the sea with the help of a sea trip on a motor boat or a yacht. The Pirate's Cave in Alanya is a popular diving place. The minimal depth for diving is 10 meters, the maximum depth is 32 meters. At the bottom of the cave, one can see a lot of amazingly shaped fishes and the other marine inhabitants that live under water. The experienced divers also like to explore the holds of the flooded ship.
The Dim Cave (Dim Maaras) - is a vertical cave that is located upon the Cebel Reis mountain (1649 meters above the sea level). It is the mountain range - the Western Taurus, in about 12 km to the northeast from the city of Alanya. The cave is a second in length all over Turkey and it serves as one of the main tourist sightseeing spots in Alanya. The Dim Cave has been discovered in 1986. For years and years the archeologists and the cavers have been working in it. It became open to the tourists only in 12 years since then. The cave is located among the pine forests over the gorge of the Dim Cay river. There is an asphalt road leading to the Dim Cave, there is a restaurant, and the parking lot not far from the cave's entrance.
The cave itself is located in a vertical line on the depth of 350 meters. The length of the cave is more than 410 meters long. The cave consists of four galleries, each of which is good and interesting in its own way. For all the year long, the temperature in the cave is a little bit lower than 20 degrees with the humidity of 90%. In all of its length, the cave is equipped for visiting. To the left from the entrance to the cave, there is a vertical passage that is 360 meters long, which ends up with a large hall that is 200 meters square and has a tiny cave lake. To the right from the entrance there is a tiny horizontal passage that is 50 meters long. The first gallery is literally pierced with ceramic splinters. The arch of the hall is rich with a great amount of stalagmites and the stalactites. They are basically everywhere - upon the walls, the floor, and hang from the ceiling just like popsicles. The third gallery is connected to a second one with a small narrow passage. However, we should note that there is electricity for the tourists inside, so it is not frightening at all when you go deeper inside the cave. There are even more stalactites there. At the very end of the underground journey, you will discover the fairy-tale like underground lake, which gathers its waters from the falling droplets. At the center of this lake you can see the sculpture of mother and a child whom she helds in her arms. The nature itself has created and shaped this stone sculpture, which will always remain in the memory of a grateful traveller.
Leartis-Learti - is the name of a picturesque village that is located in about 10 km away from Alanya. This particular place is filled with the history because, according to the ancient legends, the tiny town has been founded by the Claudius. An ancient town is located next to the modern districts of Alanya called Mahmutlar and Avsallar. Not being a scientist, it is probably quite difficult to tell anything through the ancient ruins that once were the beautiful bath houses, temples, the wells, a tiny stadium, residential and the farm buildings, and the streets of a town that has been pretty densely populated back in I-II centries of our age. From the southern part of the stadium there are ruins of a church with an apse and the aisles, in the interior of which there are traces of light blue and the red coloured frescoes that have preserved well. In addition to all of that, one can find a lot of inscriptions and figure modeling that depict the head of an ox and the claws of an eagle. Right to this city leads a picturesque road right through the banana gardens. The place in which the city is located has a very special attraction and beauty. Leartis is located at the foot of one of the highest points in the vicinity of the Cebel Ireis, which is 900 meters high, and right from the west, east, and the south, it is surrounded by a precipice. It is believed that it was exactly in Leartis that they have minted a coin dedicated to the Roman emperor called Troyan.
Syedra - the ruins of an ancient port city of the antique epoch, located in about 20 km from the city of Alanya upon a high hill at the shore of the Mediterranean Sea. The first mentioning of this city can be met in the manuscripts that are dated to the first century BC. In the first centurires of its existence, being under the rule of teh Roman Empire, Syedra has flourished because here they already minted their own coins. Later the city fell into disrepair and became desolated. The Syedra today represents an important historical monument - it is a very ancient place with a truly special atmosphere that reigns here. The irrigation system has been perfectly preserved. It includes three artificial reservoirs that are still used by the locals today. In addition, one can see the remains of the stone walls, majestic granite columns, and the ruins of the two-story basilica with a partially preserved mosaic inside, as well as the urban acropolis.
The Adam Atacak Elevation – a famous tourist sightseeing in Alanya. It is located at the northwest wall of the Celcuk fort called Ickale that was found in XIII century. At a certain point of time they used to throw down the prisoners who were sentenced to death. According to the local laws, they kept them in a dungeon for three days without food and water. As these days have ended, there were battles held between several persons that were sentenced to death. The one who has lost had a bag put on his head and thrown down from the castle walls into the abyss of the sea. The "lucky" winner was taken to the balcony of death (Adam Atacak) with a false hope for salvation. He was given three stones, which had to be thrown in such way that at least one of them reaches the sea waters. The sentenced prisoners did not know that it is unreal. An optical illusion have lead many sentenced to a bitter disappointment. Visiting this place, the travellers can only image what kind of events took place here many centuries ago. Adam Atacak today includes picturesque ruins out of which reveals the amazing panorama of the sea waters with the yachts and the tourist motor boats.
Dim Cay – one of the most popular and unusual places of leisure for the locals in Alanya that come here for the family breakfasts, romantic meetings or the friendly picnics. This incredibly picturesque valley is located in 6 miles away from Alanya towards the Mahmutlar district upon the mountain river called Dim Cay, which takes its beginning at the highlands of Konya, about two hundred kilometers from the confluence of the Mediterranean Sea. While you are there, it is good to visit the second large Dim Cave or visit the great dam, so you can enjoy the magnificient water reservoir that is surrounded by the green hills.
In the 1940s, the Dim river played a great role in the economics of Alanya since the vast banana groves here have been watered only thanks to the Dim Cay river. Even now, the storage of the drinking water in Turkey are greatly appreciated, therefore all the reservoirs are carefully protected and swimming in there is strictly prohibited. The construction of the largest Dim dam has been finished not so long time ago - on 30th of December, 2008. It has finally solved the problem not only with the drinking water, but also with the electricity supply.
Both the tourists and the locals come to the observation platform deck to take pictures against the background of a bright turquoise reservoir that is framed by the pine-covered mountains in order to asses the power of the mountain river that falls with a booming noise, the waters that have surrended to a man. Still, only a few decide to climb higher along the dirt road up to the mountains to see the entire panorama of the entire Dim Valley. From such an unusuak pacified beauty for these places, one can only hold one's breath from joy and excitement!
Oba Cay - the Turkish mountain river that falls into the Mediterranean Sea, it flows through the city of Alanya and divides the eponymous district of Alanya from its center. In winter times the level of waters in the river may get higher, however within the scope of the city, the river is shackled with the artificial shores. All along the river, there is a picturesque embankment that is decorated by the flowers and the greenery.
The Dam, which is located close to Alanya between the districts of Kestel and Mahmutlar. The grand and strategic construction that simply has to be seen! The reservoir behind the dam, according to some descriptions online, has been first filled with water on 30th of December, 2008. The capacity of the reservoir is 265 millions of square meters of water. The dam serves for the electricity, irrigation, flood protection, and also for the use of drinking water by the locals.
Hydroelectric power station of Alanya is located all along the road that leads from the Dam on the Dim river towards the Dim cave (about 6km away), right after the line of the restaurants located close to the Dim river. Right next is some nameless village, yet as you pass about one more kilometer, you can see the gardens where the mandarines and pomegranates grow.
Derekoy Turbelinas mountain village plateau. In about 30-35 km away to the north of Alanya, one can see this mountain settlement, which is also the summer residence city for the locals. One can reach it by the slope of the mountain range of the Taurus Mountains. You will be taken along the steep turns of the road that is winding among the coniferous forest. The mountain plateau of Derekoy is surrounded by the mountains on all sides and consists of the small villages that are picturesquely scattered along the slope. The villlage is comfortably located in the middle of Dereguzu, at the source of the Kargi Cay river where they grow the trout. This tiny city is famous for its grapes, figs, pekmez (molasses), and the marshmallow. The locals will get acquianted with the lifestyle of life of the locals. You will be fed with delicious food, and will be greeted by the kindest and the most radiant smiles by everyone. The people here are very friendly and kind. In summer time, the number of people in the town grows quite a lot. It is because the locals in Alanya and the tourists from all the countries of the world rush to visit this particular plateau during the hot summer months to enjoy the coolness of the mountain rivers and the mountains, and also to meet the fabuluous landscapes. All in all, the tourists have a great opportunity to find out more about the culture and the lifestyle of the inhabitants of the Taurus Mountains.
The Gedevet Plateau mountain villege. It is on the border with the plateau and a mountain village called Pinarbasi, which is 1050 meters above the sea level. Up to the present times there are the fountains well preserved that are decorated by ceramics. Right upon this plateau they grow early vegetables, apples, pears, cranberries, hazelnuts, chestnuts, sweet cherries, and the figs.
Turktas Plateau is located in the Taurus Mountains. The settlement on this plateau is famous for its amazing mountain landscapes, the trees that have been there for centuries, and for te healing air that is truly pure and unique. It is a great place for the picnics, footwalks, and for taking great pictures.
Mahmutseydi Plateau is located in about 40 miles away from the city of Alanya. It is also one of the largest and most picturesque plateaus, hence the settlement is very popular among the locals and the guests of Alanya. The Alanya's Pasa General Hamdullah Emin Pasa was a native from the Mahmut Seydili settlement. In summer time, these places are quite filled with the people. Do not miss your chance to be here to meet the many-sided culture of this region, to taste the meals of the Turkish cuisine that are filled by the special taste with the mountain's pure air. The inhabitants of this settlement are truly friendly and hospitable. Make sure that you take your camera along because the nature itself will help you to make some truly professional shots. Now the walk by feet or a horse ride across the adjacent territories will always remain in your memory and your heart.
As one is in Alanya, it is always possible to sense the calling of the mountains, which is, essentially, a true call of freedom. Living this life, almost every person feels himself or herself as a hostage of fuss and vanity, always hurrying up. A person always craves for freedom and tries to find out if there is any at all. Freedom does exist as we could find out on our own, - it lives in the mountains. The mountains is a unique place where one can "soar in the clouds" as you can admire them endlessly. The mountains carry a sense of a mental and a physical purification. Once you are in the mountains of Alanya, everything that is negative and bad remains below and your soul and mind feel easy and spacious. Now the wise people say that the mountains only call for those whose height of a soul fits them well...