Turkey is a great place to start if you’re looking to hike and trek along some of the world’s best-waymarked trails. The best hiking trails in Turkey range from the country’s many mountains to national parks that will give you a hiking experience like no other. All you have to do is book a hiking tour, pack your backpack, put on your hiking gear, and head off to your life’s adventure.
Follow us on this great journey through the country to list some of the best hikes. We included some gorgeous photos as well as we proceed.
1. Lycian Way
The Lycian Way is 509 km long and was Turkey’s first long-distance hiking trail. The trail, which was waymarked by Kate Clow in 1999, is the most famous in Turkey. The popularity of the Lycan Way is due to the stunning views and great stops along the trail.
Some of the best sections of the trail include; Kalkan, Mount Olympos, Patara beach, breathtaking views of the coastline from Kas, and ancient Lycian cities’ ruins. These amazing sceneries have earned the Lycian way a spot among the top 10 trails in the world. During the hike, you can stop in pensions and hotels or set up camp to rest.
Here is a more detailed itinerary: The Best of Lycian Way Hiking Tour covering some of these best sections.
The trail has a medium difficulty rating, and thus, most people can handle the challenge pretty well.
2. Kackar Mountains
The Kackar Mountains are mountain ranges located in Turkey’s extreme northeastern part, and their slopes plummet into the Black Sea. Kackar Trail follows the range and is 154 km long. It offers the most pleasing views due to its natural alpine beauty and is widely considered one of the best hiking choices among Turkish mountainous regions.
This superb range’s highest peak is 4000m and will make for a good challenge if you fancy yourself a mountaineer. During the trek, which will take around 30 days to complete, you may spot a bear, wolf, or an ibex.
The trail has a strenuous difficulty rating and will push your hiking skills to the limit. The best time to trek the Kackar is between July and September.
3. Uludag Mountain
Although Uludag is better known for skiing during winter, the national park is excellent for hiking in the summer months. The trail is 56 km long and stretches from Sarialan to Cobankaya, revealing the beauty of Uludag National Park in summer. Hikers trek through beautiful slopes, Alpine meadows, and glacial lakes, making this the best trail between Sarialan and Cobankaya.
The trail has a medium difficulty rating, and it will be a somewhat challenging climb.
4. Cappadocia Valleys
Cappadocia is already a world-famous region for its unique moonscape landscape and numerous historical sites. Places like Pigeon Valley, Love Valleys, Red Valley, Zemi Valley, and Rose Valley make Cappadocia a paradise for hikers. You will witness the visually striking fairy chimneys and rock churches that attract many visitors to Cappadocia along the trail.
Here is a package of an 8 Days Hiking Tour of Cappadocia that includes our favorites & some off-the-beaten places.
The trek will include several short trails with a combined is 8-11 km length with a moderate difficulty level.
5. St. Paul Trail
Like the Lycian, the St. Paul Trail was waymarked by Kate Clow; only this time, she had the help of Terry Richardson. This trail has historical significance since it originated to commemorate St Paul’s first journey through Asia Minor. It starts somewhere around Antalya (a popular beach resort) and stretches north through the Taurus Mountains along the Lake Egirdir up to Yalvac.
St. Paul Trail will allow you to see Aspendos and Perge’s ancient sites, a glimpse of rural Turkey, and the beautiful landscapes hidden there. It is 500 km long and will take you up to 27 days to complete. The best season for trekking the St. Paul Trail is between April and July and September to November. The trail is rated strenuous and will put your hiking skills to the test.
6. Yenice Forest
The Yenice Forest trail is in Northern Turkey. The path is one of the newest and lesser-known trails but is a gateway to Yenice Forest, where nature’s beauty is best. Hikers become one with nature as they enjoy the fresh forest atmosphere and walk past canyons.
The Yenice Forest Trail is also strategically located next to Safranbolu’s historic town from the Ottoman era. The trail has about 396 km and can be accessed easily from Istanbul and Ankara Region. Hiking the track is generally comfortable, and you can even use bikes or ride on horseback to complete it. The best time to go for this trail is between March and October.
7. Independence (Istiklal) Trail
The Independence Trail sits in Northern Turkey and has historical significance. The trail was used during Turkey’s Independence war by the liberating armies in 1919. It is relatively short, stretching for only 105 km between Inebolu and Seydiler-Kastamonu, close to the Black Sea. The route has a moderate difficulty rating, and the best time to trek is between March and October.
8. The Taurus Mountains
The Taurus Mountains are characterized by deep valleys, canyons, sheer rock walls, and beautiful alpine lakes and pastures. The trail is one of the most difficult to hike in Turkey and is thus very strenuous. The bridge in Adana and the Karagol lake make central Taurus a favorite among hikers, while the ancient city of Termessos attracts an equal number of hikers to western Taurus. The trail covers a distance of between 6-10 km.
9. Evliya Celebi Way
The Evliya Celebi Way is the first long-distance trekking trail in Turkey suitable for horse riders and walkers. This makes it the best route for lovers of nature and animals. The track is 1200 km long and stretches from Istanbul to Kutahya through the ancient provinces of Phrygia and Bithynia and the ancestral homes of Evliya. There are numerous spectacular sights along the way, although the route is generally strenuous.
10. Carian Trail
Carian Trail explores the history and ancient ruins of southwest Turkey. This relatively moderate trail reveals the unspoiled and colorful traditional version of Turkey. Trekking along this trail is safer during morning hours since there is a high chance of running into foxes at night. The trail starts at Mugla and is approximately 820 km long.