Walking the Lycian Way

Wonderful sea views from the Lycian WayXanthos inscription at archaeological ruinsThe combination of stunning scenery, sea views and numerous ancient sites makes this area of Turkey the perfect place for some fine coastal and inland walking. The Lycian way, one of two long distance trekking routes in Turkey was opened in 1999. Stretching for 509 kilometres between Fethiye and Antalya, this route provides about a months walking (if you want to do it all in one go) through some of Turkey's most spectacular scenery. Lycia is an area steeped in history with a rugged charm all of its own. The path can take you through a variety of landscapes right up to the 5000ft shoulder of Tahtali mountain.

The Lycian way is a way-marked footpath and the route is well marked with red and white signs (bottom right), is mainly over footpaths and mule trails, mostly over limestone which is often hard and stony underfoot. The route is graded medium to hard and is not level, so you will need to be reasonably fit to do it. There are many ascents and descents as you go down to sea level and up again.

Naturally, if you are enjoying a villa holiday you might not want to walk the whole route,Rocks with red and white markers along the Lycian Way, making walking the distance easy however you can just enjoy parts of it. The walk is easier towards Fethiye and gets progressively harder towards Antalya. Summer on the Turquoise Coast is very hot therefore it is not recommended to walk in high summer. You could opt for a shady trail but even so, spring and autumn are probably the best times.

Lycia is the historical name of the Tekke Peninsula, which juts into the Mediterranean on Turkey's southern coast. The mountains rise steeply from the tree lined shores and tiny bays, giving beautiful views and varied walking. The walk passes many historic sites and places of interest. There are some places that you will be able to see, such as Butterfly Valley, which can only be seen from the Lycian Way or by boat access.

We should be grateful to Kate Clow for making this walk possible. Through hard work she gained official recognition for the walk and the sponsorship to fund it. For more information please visit the Trekking in Turkey website


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Bee hives along the Lycian WayFlames of the chimaera along the Lycian wayGoats grazing as sun goes down - spectacular sunset near KaputasStone detail at Myra ruinsA group of walkers along the Lycian WayYellow wildflowers, many are found along the Lycian Way