Beyond the famous and popular hot air balloon rides in the volcanic landscape of Cappadocia and under the dizzying heights of paragliding over the turquoise lagoon of Olüdeniz, Turkey’s menu of thrilling activities has plenty to offer people of all interests, ages, and financial abilities. Here are 7 amazing adventures you might not know were possible in Turkey.
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- Dive down to a Dakota DC-3 aeroplane on the Mediterranean seabed.
One of Turkey’s top diving sites is the intact, 65-foot-long Dakota DC-3 aeroplane, buried under the Mediterranean Sea and only ten minutes away by boat from Kaş. It has twin engines, propellers, landing gear, and cockpit instruments. The 12.25-ton, 95-foot-wide aircraft, built during World War II and deliberately buried here in 2009, was formerly employed by the Turkish Air Force to transport paratroopers. The wreck is now home to various marine life, including stingrays, loggerhead turtles, octopuses, and scuba divers looking for underwater adventures. It is located around 70 feet under the surface of the ocean. Divers can access the plane’s cargo hold, oddly perched skyward as if getting ready for another flight.
- Ride the winds and surf of the Çeşme Peninsula.
The best spot in Türkiye for kites and windsurfers seeking fast speeds on the Aegean Sea is located an hour’s drive west of cosmopolitan Izmir. The Cesme Peninsula is one of the top travel locations in the world for fans of wind-powered surfing thanks to the Poyraz and Lodos winds, which once facilitated (and hampered) trade to ancient Anatolia. While more experienced kite surfers can look for the strong winds and white caps at Pirlanta Beach, beginner and intermediate surfers can enjoy the tranquil seas and shallow waters of Alaçati Bay and Urla. When the sails are down, Alaçati, an inland village of 19th-century greystone homes covered in vines, offers enough to discover in the upscale shops, chic bars, and fine eating establishments that line its narrow winding streets. Alaçati also serves as the site of the yearly PWA Windsurfing World Cup.
- Make “yakamoz angels” on a blue cruise during a new moon.
In Turkish, “Yakamoz,” named the most beautiful word in the world in 2007, is “phosphorescence.” When floating phytoplankton light the sea and leave a trail of twinkling light in their wake when disturbed, it is primarily understood to mean “moonlight on water,” but it can also relate to another marine event. The greatest time to view Mother Nature’s colourful display is on a Mediterranean blue cruise during a new moon when lunar light is at its lowest. To make “yakamoz angels,” passengers can dive into the water and wade on their backs.
- Get a bird’s-eye view of Ephesus
Most visitors spend hours seeing the ruins of the Roman Empire in Ephesus, which was named a World Heritage Site. These sites include the 25,000-seat Great Theatre, the Library of Celsus, and other structures. However, people frequently need to pay more attention to the enormous collection of relics from the Hellenistic and Neolithic eras outside the paid area. Few of the millions of visitors that walk Ephesus’ marble streets each year have also amazed at the city’s vast splendour from above.
The finest vantage point to understand the scope and scale of the city’s historical footprint is from one of the air tours available from Selçuk, which is close by. Adventurers can soar above Roman ruins, the relics of the Temple, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and more with microlight, ultralight, and skydiving flights. The brand-new International Türkiye Balloon Fiesta might offer a future aerial view of Ephesus, so watch it too.
- Sea kayak over a sunken Lycian city.
The ruins of a buried Lycian city are hidden in the waters of the Mediterranean between Kekova Island and Kaleköy. A town was shaken by an earthquake in the second century AD, causing the city’s structures to sink beneath the water. The ruins of residential buildings, stairways, and shipyards may still be seen today above and below the water as they appear to slip down Kekova Island’s side.
In addition to the masses of day-trippers on all-inclusive cruises, tourists can kayak over the underwater ruins for a slower-paced, more personal experience.
- Take a wild family adventure in Dalyan.
The eco-friendly town of Dalyan is one of Turkey’s most underrated coastal retreats, situated between the hedonistic beaches of Marmaris and Fethiye in a Special Environmental Protection Area. Families will love this place for its unmatched outdoor adventure possibilities. The town is home to coastal wetlands, the freshwater Köyceiz Lake, the Dalyan River, which flows into the Mediterranean, and iztuzu Beach, which serves as a breeding area for loggerhead turtles, which are a threatened species.
Take a rowboat over the river to the ancient Carian city of Kaunos, stroll past the pomegranate gardens, relax in the hot springs and mud baths that line the Dalyan River and Köycegiz Lake, and take a riverboat ride past some of Türkiye’s most stunning cliff-face Lycian tombs. Travellers have a greater possibility of seeing wildlife on land and in the sea, such as wild goats, donkeys, turtles, blue crabs, grey mullets, and sea bass. To swim and tan, continue along the river to iztuzu Beach. While there, stop at the Kaptan June Sea Turtle Conservation Foundation to see sick sea turtles being treated and hear about the local conservation efforts.
- Hike the gastro-trekking trails of the Kızılırmak River Basin.
Most seasoned hikers are familiar with Turkey’s long-distance Lycian Way, which follows the Mediterranean Coast. Still, a quick visit to the Cultural Routes Society website reveals that there are many other hiking options available all around the nation. It would help if you looked no further than the self-guided Gastronomy Route in the Corum Province, northeast of Ankara, to combine trekking with culinary delights. This is the first route of its kind in Turkey, and it follows the traditional migration and trade routes that were once primarily focused on the Kizilirmak River Basin. The itinerary, which includes 25 walking trails, 7 cycling trails, and a 702km car route, is best explored between April and November. The many routes provide access to the distinctive culture, crafts, and farm-to-table specialities of the communities along the Way as they pass waterfalls, forests, castles, bridges, and lakes in northern Central Anatolia.
We offer turkey visa online to Turkey for your desired tour, from romantic honeymoons to scenic self-drive road trips to significant destinations.