April 1st. will be a day I won’t forget. There I was on my first blogger trip with 2 nice girls – Sanne from DanskiTyrkiet.dk and Tea from TeaTougaard.dk. Such a super-really smart blogger tour, which I think only surpasses all other “real” bloggers than me. This tour, however, was not about stilettos, smart out-fit and fancy food (it seems like most bloggers go to such events, where it’s all about networking and being smart). Our trip has more to do with good footwear, happy mood and chocolate. So a trip down to earth – or high up in the mountains in fact, because we were to visit the ancient ruin Termessos, located just north of Antalya, about 35 km from the center and 1665 km up a mountain. This place had none of us seen before.
A blogger adventure:
It was really nice to meet 2 bloggers, whom I did not know. Of course, we “know” each other from Facebook, but we have never met or talked together. So quite funny to meet in the middle of a country road far outside Antalya city. I have agreed to take the Tram / Metro out of town, to make it easier for them to pick me up. It turned out, however, that it was a real adventure to take the metro, because not everything goes as you plan in Turkey (or go on time). And then there is the challenge of understanding each other correctly and finding each other at the agreed place. But fortunately, they managed to find me after a little while. Both Sanne and Tea are 2 nice girls, whom I share a lot with – besides nerding and blogging about Turkey. So we were 3 Danish girls, with different stories and Turkey as a special and common denominator, who were heading for the mythical Termessos.
Amazing enough, really, that I / we haven’t been there before. For Termessos is not far from my father-in-law’s house in Duaci – about 20 minutes drive, and we have stayed through many years. So I was very excited to see Termessos – the mythical, legendary old town described in Homer’s “Iliad” but isn’t that widely known beyond that.
Never really explored:
Termessos was first “really” discovered in the 20th century, but has not been further elaborated since. Unfortunately, this means that one doesn’t know much about the place, other than what is written on the inscriptions and on the tombstones on the spot. However, it is believed that the small antique mountain town was built approx. 900 B.C. and was destroyed by 2 violent earthquakes. The latest in the 5th century destroyed the city’s water supply, so the inhabitants had to leave and abandon the place. It is true, that even Alexander the Great suffered defeat about 333 BC, when he attempted to take the impassable city. “The eaagle nest” he dubbed it, which may not be entirely misleading. It is a difficult city to enter.
It is an incredibly beautiful trip up to Termessos. The city itself is surrounded by the Güllük Dagi Milli Park National Park, which houses many rare and endangered animal and plant species. Fortunately, the first climb is by car (even though we saw someone on a bike !!!). About 9 km on a narrow-paved mountain road, full of hairpin turns (the road is completely the same as in ancient times, only in better condition). Then you reach a large parking lot, from which you have to walk further 2 km up a narrow and very rocky mountain path. Right next to the entrance there is a restaurant and a kiosk, which is sometimes open. At the parking lot there are also toilets. So long so good.
If you have to visit the place in the winter, there is open between 8 am and 7 pm and in the summer ml 8 and 19. It costs 5 Turkish lira to enter, so it is very cheap. I ‘m told, that in summer, there are guides waiting at the entrance, whom you can hire (I do not know, however, what they cost).
You will probably use 3-5 hours on this trip. But, of course, it differs depending on your curiosity (and physics). Ticket sales close approx. ½ hour before, so you can come down before it gets dark and dangerous.
Unfortunately, there are no public buses to Termessos, so the trip can be a little challenging, if you do not have a car. However, a taxi can be rented and allegedly cost around 67 EUR from Antalya city center.
It’s not hard to find Termessos, if you’re in a car. We met in Aksu and followed route 400 around the city and towards Kemer, and then route 650 heading up to Duaci and Dösemealti. From there, take route 85 towards Korkuteli and Denizli at the major roundabout after the Ataturk monument. After driving for 15 minutes, you meet a sign for Termessos. Naturally you chose this way and then and vupti, you’re there.
If you would like to read more about the actual trip to Termessos, I would ask you to skip to my second post (“Bloggers to Termessos – The Mythical Mountain Village Part II”).