Lycian Way, Turkey – Ready & Waiting
Over past millennia Turkey’s spectacular Likya Yolu landscapes have seen and survived it all. The Lycian Way sits as an essential life blood to this most spectacular region, neither famine, fire, earthquake, war, plague nor pandemic have put travellers off pacing the historic route.
As throughout history, the trail has steadfastly remained open, safe and isolated during the present COVID-19 pandemic. Turkey is back off the FCO’s ‘no travel’ map and subsequently, it is one of the most suitable and exciting adventure holiday destinations.
The 500+ km trail offers an abundance of big sky, open-landscape experiences. It combines a kaleidoscope of ancient settlements, Mittelmeer seascapes, sleepy shoreline villages, mountain views, sweeping sand dunes and horizon-stretching sunsets. Moreover, a warm-hearted welcome from a local population, living on one of the Mediterranean’s most impressive coastlines, is guaranteed.
The path was originally formed as a wide-reaching trail network along Turkey’s southern Antatolia coastal region. Running along from Fethiye to Antalya, the trail formerly linked the Late Bronze Aged Lycian settlements, including Patara, Xanthos, Myra, Tios, Pinara, Phaselis and Olympos.
Over time, as the various ancient Persian and Greece empires gave way to the Byzantine, Seljuk and Ottoman realms, the Trail has collected an impressive patchwork of historical treasures- from original solid rock-cut tombs with exquisitely carved sarcophagi, to grandstanding Roman amphitheatres. Today’s trekking experience continues to serve up visitors an historical blast from the past, as well as magnificent and magical Mediterranean Sea setting.
First visiting the region just under 40 years ago, I was immediately won over, loving the pace, setting and lifestyle of this sleepy region. My photos, predominantly taken along the Pydnai to Sura coastal section, highlight the diversity of the landscapes, with gentle mix of modern and ancient influences.
In addition to being highly recommended in normal circumstance, with so much of the world still cut off presently (due to the COVID-19 situation), this Lycian Way experience is one of the most exciting ‘still-can-visit’ destinations.
Although tough in areas, the well signed Trail offers a chance to truly escape present-day concerns.
My advice – go for it. Setting a gentle pace, whilst echoing the local expression “kolay gelsin” – “may it be easy for you”.