For these of us who grew up exterior town, summer time is probably probably the most claustrophobic time to be residing in Istanbul. The excellent news is, you could find spots really untouched by city improvement only a few hours exterior of the metropolis.
To actually get in contact with nature in your weekend getaway, I like to recommend choosing a tent to spend the evening below the celebrities. Whether you’ve gotten by no means gone camping or are an aficionado, there are some spots you’re positive to take pleasure in within a three-hour drive of Istanbul.
To entry most of these areas, you have to a automobile. If you’re renting, I like to recommend selecting a automobile with a better clearance to assist navigate bumpy mountain roads. The first time you go to these spots, it’s a good suggestion to journey throughout daylight hours to keep away from hitting any nasty potholes or taking a unsuitable flip.
As one final phrase of recommendation, please, depart no hint. These locations are a refuge for city-dwellers solely as a result of they’ve been stored clear and undisturbed. Dispose of all of your trash in a dumpster, and respect the wildlife you encounter.
Sahilköy, Şile, Istanbul
Perks: Toilet and bathe amenities, seashore entry to the Black Sea, a restaurant on website, tent and bungalow leases, accessible by bus
If you’re new to tent camping, beginning out at a campsite with facilities is an efficient approach to get a style for the exercise. Sahil Kamp Istanbul is the proper place to start out out, situated on the northern Black Sea coast of Istanbul. The campsite is accessible by buses (line 139S) that depart thrice a day from Üsküdar and cease at Sahilköy, or you’ll be able to drive and park your automobile on the campsite car parking zone. If you don’t have your individual tent, you’ll be able to hire a tent or a bungalow. After organising camp and stringing up your hammock between the pine bushes, you’ll need to take a dip within the Black Sea or absorb some rays on the seashore. This campsite gives loads to maintain you entertained whereas nonetheless getting you out of the city jungle.
Perks: Toilet amenities, dumpsters, registration workplace, firewood on the market
If you wish to get deep into the woods, Sülüklügöl Campsite in Bolu province is simply the place for you. After paying a modest entry payment, you’ll be able to pitch your tent subsequent to Leach Lake, because it interprets in English, nestled between verdant, densely wooded hills.
The first sound you’ll in all probability discover is the symphony of frogs. I’m not positive I’ve ever seen as many frogs in a single place as I did at Sülüklügöl. The space is residence to 406 totally different species of vegetation, 38 of that are endemic. There are a quantity of climbing trails you’ll be able to take, each across the lake and again into the woods in the other way. Make positive to deliver bug spray as a result of the mosquitos might be bothersome.
The weekend we spent at Sülüklügöl, it rained the entire time, even flooding our associates’ tent. Nevertheless, the drizzle solely heightened the recent, earthy scents and blanketed the lake in a mesmerizing layer of fog. Seeing some locations on a wet day could dampen your impression, however Sülüklügöl just isn’t one of these locations.
Soğucak Plateau, Sakarya
Perks: Free of cost, outhouses, household pleasant
Soğucak Yaylası (or plateau, in English) is the proper place for households with youngsters. This giant, grassy plateau is located atop a peak within the Samanlı mountain vary in Sakarya province. Though Google maps could present two routes, be sure that to take the street that runs by Ilmiye – the opposite is a logger’s street that isn’t pleasant to passenger automobiles. You can pitch a tent anyplace, although I like to recommend driving throughout the plateau when you emerge from the woods, as there are some outhouses alongside the tree line on that aspect.
The tall grass makes for a mushy mattress and likewise a really perfect enjoying discipline for kicking a soccer or throwing a Frisbee. This spot can also be good for star-gazing. Before delivering for the evening, put out a blanket and lie in your again to look at the Earth spin.
If you need to get some climbing in, you’ll be able to stroll 5 kilometers (3 miles) to the Doğansivri hearth tower – simply ask an area to level you to the trailhead. On a crystal clear day, it’s possible you’ll be fortunate sufficient to see each Sapanca Lake and the Black Sea past it.
Make positive you deliver sunscreen with you if you’re fair-skinned as a result of the UV publicity will increase at increased altitudes. Once you’ve gotten made your means again down the mountain, I like to recommend washing the mud off with a swim in Sapanca Lake at Harmanlık.
Sultanpınar Plateau, Bolu
Perks: Free of cost, people close by in case of emergency, well-suited for leisurely hikes
Sultanpınar Yaylası, on the Bolu-Sakarya border, is probably my favourite plateau within the area. This plateau is residence to a country village. We encountered some automobile bother on our first journey to Sultanpınar and about half a dozen villagers provided tea and help, with one even urging us to spend the evening at his home. We have been the one campers there that weekend and pitched our tents on the alternative aspect of the pond from the village. There aren’t any designated camping areas, so pitch your tent wherever your coronary heart wishes. Be warned, there aren’t any lavatory amenities.
If you’ve gotten time to discover, the world is residence to a number of plateaus, skirted by combined forest, carpeted in stubby inexperienced grasses and laced with streams. You can hike between some of the plateaus, although it would be best to guarantee your telephone is charged so you should use the GPS in case you wander too far out of your campsite.
Mount Uludağ, Bursa
Perks: Free of cost, whole silence, no mosquitos
Mount Uludağ, the best level within the Marmara area at 2,543 meters (8,343 ft) above sea degree, is a spot I’d solely advocate to skilled campers on account of its isolation and publicity to the weather. Three lakes relaxation close to the height of the mountain – Kilimli Göl, Karagöl and Aynalı Göl. Just sort in Karagöl Uludağ and Google maps will get you there. A dust street results in the sting of the Karagöl, the place you’ll be able to pitch your tent. We parked close to the street and backpacked our provides over the ridge to Aynalı Göl. This lake is nestled in a melancholy marked on one aspect by a rocky ridge and the opposite by a sheer rock face.
If you’ve gotten by no means camped above the tree line, the silence is extraordinary – barely even eerie if you’re used to the sounds of songbirds and frogs whenever you camp. But, no want to fret about mosquitos or flies. The altitude is just too excessive for flying bugs. The nights get very chilly, so deliver heat gear if you wish to catch any winks. You will even need to deliver firewood with you as there’s nothing to assemble above the tree line. Again, sunscreen is a should.
During our keep, we have been visited by two large Akbaş sheepdogs who have been tending a flock of sheep and goats. They have been pleasant sufficient, however at all times keep in mind that sheepdogs will not be pets and hold a respectful distance.
If you’re in for a strenuous hike, you’ll be able to trek as much as the summit from the lakes. It takes about an hour and covers rocky terrain, so you’ll want to deliver good footwear and sufficient water.