Discover nature by cycling along Turkey's best routes

Published 12.04.2017 20:00
Updated 12.04.2017 20:09
Discover nature by cycling along Turkey's best routes

For those seeking renewed wellness for the body and soul, pedaling through ancient Anatolia's best cycling routes is the best way for self renewal

The month of April may be the most optimal time of year for nature lovers to enjoy outdoor activities. While springtime in the great outdoors does come with the allergy season, for an entertaining and adventurous weekend all you need is a pair of comfy clothes, sneakers and a bicycle. Whether you live in the city or you want to include cycling on your road trip itinerary, here are some of the best bicycle routes to suit every taste.

Mysia route: Ideal for nature enthusiasts

Located just 10 kilometers from Bursa, the Mysia route is ideal for witnessing the awakening of nature in the spring months. Formed by connecting natural pathways, the route starts at the historical Gümüştepe (formerly known as Misi) among pine forests and ends in Gölyazı on the shores of Lake Uluabat, featured in Turkish TV series and films as a symbol of a beautiful, untouched part of nature. Moreover, you can take a break from your journey in the Dağyenice and Maksempınarı villages and re energize yourself by enjoying local delicacies. Another attractive option for nature lovers is to watch migratory birds around Lake Uluabat. For detailed information about the Mysia Route, you can review the detailed brochure at the Bursa Nilüfer Municipality's website.

Ayvalık: Quiet, tranquil and peaceful

Ayvalık is another place where you can travel before the summer heat begins. Here, your options are quite abundant. For example, you can visit the art village Yeniçarohori, which was named after the Janissaries who founded the village, or wander around the old Greek houses that have been transformed into galleries and workshops that now dot the countryside. The second option is to pedal to the Devil's Feast, 10 kilometers away from Ayvalık, to watch the sunset. This offers the most breathtaking view of the Aegean coast. The third option, which is at least as attractive as the first two, is to visit Cunda Island National Park and go to the secluded beaches in the north of the island. Alternatively, you can also tour Cunda's charming streets full of churches, mansions, cafes and shops. If you do not have the opportunity to take your own bicycle, remember that you can rent bicycles from the local hotels.

Kayaköy: Pedal in crystal clear air

Fethiye's Kayaköy village is one of the most special villages in Turkey. The village, which was predominantly host to a Greek population in the past, was among the important trade centers of the region. The village, formerly known as Levissi, is also known as a settlement that heals the sickly, due to the clean air it still maintains today. After visiting the center of Kayaköy, which provides a unique backdrop to your bicycle tour with its original architecture, we suggest you visit the farmhouses, art camps and wine houses on the lowlands on the skirts of the villages. In order to get first-hand information about the history of the village, you should visit the village café and chat with the locals.

Karaburun peninsula: Six special stages

The cycling and walking routes in İzmir's Karaburun peninsula are ideal for those who want to get information about grape growing and wine production in addition to enjoying natural beauty. There are six different stages between the Urla, Çeşme and Karaburun vineyards. Even the Bağlararası site is home to Anatolia's first known winery. We suggest you take a look at the thematic excursion routes prepared by İzmir Metropolitan Municipality in order to decide where you want to start your journey and which route you want to follow. Also remember that there are dozens of shops in downtown Izmir where you can rent bicycles.

Sığacık: Feast first, cycle later

Located right next to İzmir, Sığacık is the coastal settlement of Turkey's first "Calm City" Seferihisar. Another characteristic of Sığacık, which is quite peaceful with its cobblestoned streets along with its mansions decorated with flowers, courtyards and oriel windows, is that it is an ideal starting point for those wishing to tour the region. We recommend that you visit the produce market, set up on Sundays, to taste homemade pastries, baklavas, jams and, of course, freshly picked fruits from the garden. After this feast, you must pedal to the ancient port town of Teos to digest the delicacies you have just tasted. There you can enjoy a pleasant tour in the archaeological section of the city, accompanied by flowers opening in the spring, pedaling around the well-preserved six-kilometer long walls.

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