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Ancient Cities of Lycia 1

Ancient Trails of Lycia

Overview

On this easy to moderate walking tour, you will discover selected sections of the Lycian Way, revealing the region’s ancient heritage and wild beauty. You will walk through mountainous landscapes and dense forests, where the oriental strawberry tree grows, explore the ruins of Lycian ancient cities and discover the rock tombs of Myra.

Highlights

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Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Antalya

Arrive at Antalya Airport and enjoy our complimentary transfer to your hotel in Antalya’s historical Old Town (15 km / 20 minutes). Meet our representative, who will brief you on the walks and give you the maps and the documentation needed for your trip.

  • Accommodation: Dogan Hotel or Kosa Hotel or similar
  • Walking for the day: none / walk around Antalya Old Town

Day 2: Walk from Gedelme to Ovacik | 9 km

Transfer to the trailhead above the village of Gedelme in the mountains of the Olympos National Park (56 km / 1.5 hours). First, you walk through high pine forests, then through gorges to an alpine pasture. Enjoy the views of the Tahtalı Dağı (2370 m) and the sea. Your destination is the mountain village of Ovacık, where you will have a magnificent view of the sea and the high mountains of Taurus from your hotel.

  • Accommodation: Gül Mountain Resort or similar
  • Walking for the day: 9 km, 3-4 hours, ↑610 m ↓220 m

Day 3: The Eternal Flames of Chimaera | 8 km

Transfer to the valley of Ulupinar (35 km / 40 min). Through pine forests, you hike to the “Burning stones” with its natural earth fire, the eternal flames of the Chimaera. Mount Chimaera was the name of this place in ancient Lycia, where methane and other gases emerge from the rock and burn constantly. Some ancient sources considered it to be the origin of the myth of the monster called the Chimera. Finally, walk down into the bay of Çirali, lined with green gardens and a beautiful sandy beach.

  • Accommodation: Plaj Hotel or similar
  • Walking for the day: 8 km, 3.5 hours, ↑195 m ↓450 m

Day 4: From the Ancient City of Olympos to Adrasan Bay | 20 km

Today, the ruins of the ancient coastal town of Olympos await you. Discover the remains of temples and thermal baths, as well as the Acropolis, which rests on a seaside cliff. Through deciduous forests with strawberry trees, the path leads up the side of Musa Daği. Past citrus fruit orchards you reach Adrasan Bay.

  • Accommodation: Papirus Hotel or similar
  • Walking for the day: 20 km, 6-7 hours, ↑720 m ↓720 m

Day 5: Coast of Kekova, the Sunken City | 10 km

Transfer to Kapakli (120 km / 2 hours). From here you start your hike to the ruins of the ancient city of Istlada. Walk through the beautiful coastal landscape of Kekova and reach the old castle of Simena. The Lycian Way then leads you to the small natural port of Üçağiz, where you stay for two nights.

Day 6: The Ancient Cities of Apollonia and Apelai | 15 km

Short transfer to the hiking trail above the small village of Sahilkilincli. First, visit the ancient city of Apollonia with its theatre. Through slopes covered with oaks and carob trees, you will walk to the remains of the ancient city of Aperlai. Here, in a long bay between two ridges, an inlet reaches up to the ruins – a beautiful bathing place! Walk back to Üçağiz on a narrow path along the coast.

Day 7: The Rock Tombs of Myra and Antalya

Transfer to the ancient city of Myra (22 km / 40 min). Here you will see the impressive Lycian rock tombs, which are built in a towering rock wall. Afterwards, you can visit the Byzantine Basilica of Saint Nicholas in Demre before returning to Antalya by public bus (about 3 hrs, transfer not included, bus ticket c. GBP 10 pp plus GBP 10 for a taxi ). Alternative booking of private transfer is possible (at an extra cost). Visit the old town of Antalya, the old harbour or the beautiful terraced parks of Antalya.

  • Accommodation: Dogan Hotel or Kosa Hotel or similar
  • Walking for the day: no walking / walk around Antalya

Day 8: Departure

Return home or individual stay extension.

What to Expect

Accommodation

Accommodation is in hand-picked and regularly monitored hotels and guesthouses offering various levels of comfort. During this tour, you’ll stay in places that make you feel good and safe in lovely villages surrounded by trees and mountains. You stay in small, local, family-run and friendly hotels and pensions with a personal touch. The properties are run by friendly people who make you feel part of the family and the local community. Six of the overnights are in private en-suite rooms, and one is in a village house with shared facilities. We have tried to choose accommodations that offer friendly service, clean and comfortable rooms and local flavour.

Click to view default hotels

Dogan Hotel,Kosa Hotel, Papirus Hotel, Plaj Hotel, Gül Mountain Resort, Telemen’in Evi, Onur Pension

Hotels are subject to availability. In case a particular hotel is fully booked for your desired dates we will replace it with a hotel of equal value and quality level. We will give you exact accommodation details upon booking confirmation.

Meals

Breakfast is always included. Dinner, a packed lunch and a bottle of mineral water are included on Days 2-6. In Antalya, there are multiple restaurants and taverns where you can sample the incredible local cuisine.

Difficulty & terrain

This holiday is suitable for walkers of average fitness. Some days include longer walks of a moderate grade. The total walking distance is 54 km, with an average of 11 km per walking day. Total elevation gain is up to 1700 m (read more about difficulty grades). The terrain is varying from steep rocky footpaths to cobbled paths. Routes are well signposted in most parts. We strongly advise you to follow only marked trails and never shorten the path through the unknown and unmarked terrain. We will provide you with detailed road notes and maps, and you can call our 24/7 local assistance phone number anytime. More detailed info on route navigation will be included in your holiday information pack.

When to go

We can organise this walking tour between March and June and September till November. July and August are too hot for making this trip. Weather is best in the autumn. The flexibility of self guided holidays means that there are no fixed dates and you can start your holiday on any date in the season. Winter temperatures are quite mild, with average highs around 15 °C (59 °F), while in summer the maximum temperatures are hot, ranging between 30 and 35 °C (86 and 95 °F). Rainfall is concentrated from mid-October to mid-April, when it can be abundant, and can sometimes be torrential, particularly in the slopes facing west and southwest.

Getting there

FCO up-to-date travel advice

By plane

Our recommended airport for this tour is Antalya (complimentary airport transfers from/to it are included).

Inclusions

Included

  • Detailed pre-departure holiday information pack including GPS-checked and regularly updated route descriptions and road notes; maps with daily routes and optional hikes marked
  • Accommodation for 7 nights as listed in the itinerary
  • 7 breakfasts
  • 5 packed lunches and 5 dinners
  • Luggage transport to next hotel
  • Transfers to/from the Antalya airport
  • 24/7 phone assistance by our local office/representative

Excluded

  • Flights
  • Bus transfer from Myra to Antalya on Day 7
  • Lunches and dinners on the first and last day
  • Travel insurance (required – get a quote online)
  • Personal expenses
  • Local tourist taxes and entry fees (payable on-site)
  • Any items not explicitly listed as included

Options, extras & supplements

  • A supplement applies to members of a group who require a single room
  • This holiday is available for solo travellers; a supplement will be charged as accommodation and luggage transfer costs are not shared (we never mix and match – solo travellers will be accommodated in single rooms)
  • Extra nights in Antalya

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