Ten Trekking Routes in Turkey: Perfect for Beginners and Seasoned Hikers in 2023

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There exists a misconceived notion that “hiking is only for fitness enthusiasts”. However, if you are a travel enthusiast or an amateur photographer or if you seek a tranquil and peaceful environment, then hiking is the optimal choice for you. Especially when you are on a trip to Eurasia, you should opt for trekking in Turkey. The breathtaking scenery, historical and cultural gems of Turkey make it an ideal destination for trekking and hiking. The country boasts magnificent countryside and numerous mountainous regions that are perfectly suited for trekking in Turkey. To enrich your experience, you can explore the extensive collection of flora, fauna, and wildlife during this trekking journey to Turkey.

St Paul Trail

10 Famous Trails For Trekking In Turkey

Choosing the perfect route for trekking in Turkey can be challenging, considering that there are approximately nineteen trekking routes available. Here, we present the top 7 locations for trekking in Turkey:

1. St Paul Trail

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The St Paul Trail is a particularly special trekking trail in Turkey due to its historical significance. This trail was traversed by St Paul during his initial journey across Asia Minor. It is a long-distance route that typically takes about 27 days to complete. By embarking on this trek, you will have the opportunity to witness the beauty of rural Turkish villages and stunning landscapes. The ideal seasons for trekking on the St Paul Trail are April to July and September to November.

Distance: 500 Km

Difficulty level: Challenging

Route: The St Paul Trail stretches from Aspendos or Perge (east of Antalya on the south coast) to Yalvaç, northeast of Lake Eğirdir; the two branches fork at the Roman site of Adada

View of Lycian Trail

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2. Lycian Trail

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This is one of the most renowned destinations for trekking in Turkey. The presence of a 12 km beach at Patara and the breathtaking views of the coastline from Kas, Kalkan, and Mount Olympos make it a truly unique trekking spot. Additionally, you can explore the historical ruins of Lycian cities nestled in the Mediterranean region. We recommend wearing appropriate hiking shoes and consider purchasing a hiking pole, although the latter is not obligatory.

Distance: 509 KilometersDifficulty level: IntermediateRoute: From Fethiye to Antalya to the coast of Lycia, southern Turkey

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3. Kaçkar Trail

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Situated in the Black Sea region of Turkey, the Kaçkar Trail is a remarkably pleasing sight. It is also one of the top choices among mountainous regions in Turkey to discover and hike. For hiking on the Kaçkar Trail, there is a strong network of mountains to be crossed, which can take from a few hours to several days. This trek can be completed in around 30 days. Mt Kaçkar is recognized as the fourth highest point for hiking in Turkey. You are sure to encounter a bear, ibex, or wolf. The best and potentially the safest time to embark on a trek on the Kaçkar Trail is from July to September.

Distance: 154 kilometersDifficulty level: ChallengingRoute: Lies between Çamlihemsin and Yusufeli in northeastern Turkey

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4. Evliya Çelebi Way

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Evliya Çelebi Way is one of the oldest and longest trekking trails. This is the ideal trekking trail for nature and animal enthusiasts. This is the initial long Distance trail for trekking in Turkey with accommodations for both walkers and horse riders. You can observe the ancient provinces of Bithynia and Phrygia and the ancestral residences of Evliya, among many other remarkable sights. We recommend you to check the weather conditions online beforehand commencing your trek.

Distance: 1200 KilometersDifficulty level: ChallengingRoute: From Istanbul to Kutahya

Yenice Forest trek

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5. Yenice Forest Trail

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Very little is known about this hiking path. The main highlight of the Yenice Forest Trail is its strategic position. Situated near the historical town of Safranbolu, a well-preserved Ottoman era area, Yenice Forest Trail is a must-visit. Safranbolu is the heart of saffron crocus harvest. There is a brief path of roughly 396 kms that can be covered through 21 alternate routes. This trail is conveniently accessible from Istanbul and Ankara region of Turkey. On this path, you can utilize bicycles or opt for horseback riding to reach the destination. This hiking trail is ideal for a two to a three-day walking trip. The finest time to embark on this hike is in the months between March and October.

Distance: 395 KmDifficulty level: EasyRoute: Yenice is a forest area in the northern part of Turkey

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6. Independence Trail or Istiklal

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It is an ancient hiking trail that was traversed by the liberation army officials during Turkey’s Independence war in the year 1991. Located on the opposite side of the country somewhere along the shore of the Black Sea, Independence Trail or Istiklal is quite a short hiking path. This trekking trail holds great significance in the history of Turkey. The optimal time to hike this trail is from March to October.

Distance: 105 kmDifficulty level: ModerateRoute: From İnebolu to Seydiler-Kastamonu

Carian Trail in Turkey

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7. Carian Trail

This hiking trail will aid you in exploring the ancient remains and history of Southwest Turkey for an insightful hiking experience in Turkey. This path allows you to witness the untouched, vibrant, and extremely conventional side of Turkey. We advise you to hike the Carian Trail in the morning hours since there’s a very high possibility of encountering wild creatures like foxes at night. Remember to bring a torch and a container of water with you that you can refill along the trail by stopping at water sources such as streams.

Distance: 820 kmDifficulty level: ModerateRoute: The path begins from Mugla, Turkey

8. Uludag Mountain Trail

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If you’re searching for the greatest Turkey hiking paths then is the greatest route leading from Sarialan to Cobankaya. Ths path is typically called one of the most preferred hiking paths in Turkey during the summer. The winter months are for skiing and appreciating the ski resorts here. The Uludag National Park is a terrific resort for hikers to enjoy walking path along the stunning slopes, glacial lakes and Alpine meadows in the summer season. 

Distance: 56 kmDifficulty level: Medium Route: Through the woodland from Sarialan to Cobankaya and the path above the treeline to the glacial

9. Cappadocia Trail

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A paradise for hikers, this little piece of land has rather a distinct landscape with a wealth of historic sights. The Pigeon Valley is a well-known spot for hiking with a surreal landscape, sculpted valleys, canyons and phallic rock formations. Amongst other well-known spots for hiking in Cappadocia include Love Valleys, Red valley, Zemi Valley and Rose Valley.

Distance: 8 – 11 kmDifficulty level: Moderate Route: Start The Pigeon Valley (Güvercinlik Vadisi) path starts at Trail Marker G3 on Uzun Dore Road in south-east Göreme. 

10. Taurus Mountains Trail

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This trekking path is a highly strenuous one of the most challenging hiking routes that you can discover in Turkey. The Taurus mountains showcase stony pathways, deep gorges, canyons, alpine meadows, and lakes. The most well-liked trails are in western Taurus and central Taurus for the best hiking Turkey expeditions.

Distance: 6 – 10 kmLevel of Difficulty: StrenuousRoute: You can cross the old caravan routes, hike through the canyons, and ascend into the secluded, rugged highland that has captivating meadows and lakes.

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So the next time you organize a trip to Turkey, don’t fail to acquire an entirely new experience by trekking in Turkey. We assure you that it’ll be an an experience of a lifetime and you’ll return from Turkey with plenty of fantastic memories.

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Commonly Asked Questions

What are the mountain ranges in Turkey called?

The Taurus Mountains, is a mountain range situated in the Mediterranean region of Turkey, running approximately 560 km parallel to the coastline, and forming the southern boundary of the Anatolian plateau.

What is the tallest mountain in Turkey near the Iranian border?

Mount Ararat forms a near-quadripoint between Turkey, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Iran. Its summit is situated some 16 km west of both the Iranian border and the border of the Nakhchivan exclave of Azerbaijan.

Why is Hiking renowned in Turkey?

Hiking in Turkey is most prestigious because of its stunning scenery, historical and cultural treasures of Turkey which makes the place the perfect destination for hiking. Turkey boasts a fascinating countryside and a number of mountainous vistas that are suitable for hiking in Turkey. While hiking in Turkey, a diverse flora and fauna along with wildlife can be encountered.

What are the popular locations for hiking in Turkey?

The most famous ones include St Paul trail, Lycian trail, Kackar trail, Evliya Celebi way, Yenice forest trail, Istiklal, Carian trail, and many more.

Which is the lengthiest and oldest trail of Turkey?

The Evliya Celebi way is the lengthiest and oldest trail in Turkey. Astonishing sights can be observed during this expedition as it covers ancestral homes of Evliya.

What is the suitable time for hiking in Turkey?

The prime season for hiking in Turkey is primarily spring and autumn. The best months are April to June and also October.

What are the essentials to carry while hiking?

The basic essentials that are vital to carry while hiking in Turkey are water bottles as the weather is generally somewhat hot. Flashlight is a must to carry when hiking at night in the woodland area.

What is the shortest trail of Turkey?

The Independence trail of Turkey is the shortest trail. It covers 105 kms that commences at Inebolu and concludes at Seydiler- Kastamonu.

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