To mark the season, this month’s concept is Autumn Tranquility. For more information, we invite you to read our blog, An invitation to tranquility: Autumn holidays in Turkey. For information on popular cycling routes, please see the 7 best bike tours in Turkey and the infographic. Meanwhile, we now present our readers with some lesser known – but beautiful – cycling routes in Turkey.
If your bicycles, bells, reflector vests, headlights and packs are ready, let’s start!
Yedigöller is considered by many as one of the best places to enjoy autumn. Its magnificent nature, along with multiple lakes and camping areas, makes it an ideal destination for fresh air and a socially distanced holiday. For other spectacular destinations, see 5 great places in Turkey for an autumn holiday.
At approximately 76 kilometers, most of the Düzce-Yedigöller-Bolu cycling route passes through the forest, and you’ll want to have a camera handy – the views are stunning. This route does involve hilly terrain, so it may not be suitable for beginners.
Beginning from the Yığlıca district of Düzce, cyclers may opt to bike to the Saklıkent Waterfall and the Sarıkaya and Gökçekaya Caves before riding to the magnificent Yedigöller National Park. With seven lakes, the Park also has convenient camping areas.
After leaving Yığlıca, the path goes into woodland where you can listen to the sounds of the birds, with some uphill stretches, and then give a long break at the lake district.
This route can generally be completed in two days, camping overnight in Yedigöller.
Kapıdağ Peninsula has emerged as a popular holiday destination in Turkey, due to its beautiful beaches, lush nature, and proximity to Istanbul – ideal for city residents who want to camp and bike in one of the Marmara region’s most unique settings.
Fewer tourists are familiar with the Peninsula, connected to Balıkesir, and thus it remains relatively undeveloped, with virgin bays, tranquil beaches and a notable sense of calm. In the mild autumn weather, Kapıdağ Peninsula is a magnificent bicycle route.
The approximately 120-km route begins and ends in Erdek, traversing the peninsula through Narlı, Doğanlar, Turan, Ballıpınar, Çakıllı and Tatlısu and passing along swimming bays and beaches. A significant portion of the route is unpaved; as well, much of the route is hilly.
Be especially careful in the 10-kilometer section up to the Kapıdağ Peninsula strait. The road, which is windy and frequently used by heavy vehicles, lacks safety lanes. Cyclists are advised to wear reflective vests and turn on their bike’s headlights and taillights.
There’s usually an annual Kapıdağ Peninsula Bicycle Festival – the most recent one took place in September 2019 – and it’s a great time to enjoy the route and meet other cyclists.
There are many undiscovered bays on this route. If you are brave enough to swim in autumn, take your swimwear with you!
Intertwined with history, nature and sports, the 300-kilometer Mysia Roads, in Bursa, consists of both walking paths and cycling routes. Another option is the 50-kilometer Mysia-Gölyazı route.
Mysia Roads is a historical area that has connected two important centers of Bursa, which was also the capital of the Ottoman Empire, since ancient times. Featuring historical villages, churches and castles set amid green nature, as well as bicycle tours, angling, and trekking and camping areas, Mysia Roads also is a center for nature photography and bird watching.
The route starts in Mysia, easily accessible from Bursa. The first stop is generally Dağyenice Pond, 7 kilometers away. The road is asphalt, stabilized and soil. If you have time, stop by Çalı Pond. After, go towards İnegazi over Atlas which is 16 kilometers.
The next stop, 8.5 kilometers after İnegazi, is Maksempınarı. About half of the road is uphill; Hasanağa Pond lies along this road.
The distance between Mysia and Maksempınarı is about 30 kilometers and the distance between Maksempınarı and Gölyazı, which is the last stop, is approximately 22 kilometers. Gölyazı is frequently featured as a backdrop in television series, due to its natural beauty.
In autumn, the foliage of Mysia Roads is gloriously colorful. Magnificent views are plentiful, so keep your camera handy!
It’s easy to make sure you’re on the right route: the walking paths have red- and white-striped stones, while the bike paths have yellow, triangular stones.
Antalya-Sillyon Ancient City
As a host of settlements for thousands of years, the Antalya area features a number of ancient cities. Among the lesser known is the Ancient City of Sillyon.
Built on a high hill between the Aspendos and Perge Ancient Cities, Sillyon Ancient City is within the borders of Antalya’s Serik district and about 30 kilometers from the Old Town. Sillyon, the Episcopal center during the Byzantine period, lasted through the Seljuk era. However, it is now in ruins.
This cycling route begins and ends in the Old Town. At about 80 kilometers, it’s a relatively easygoing route, even taking into consideration that Sillyon Ancient City is 200 meters above sea level. Other than Sillyon, the highest hill is about 70 meters.
The route is paved, ideal for beginners and suitable for all types of bicycles. There are also mountain bike routes close to this main route.
Start from the Antalya-Serik Road and head towards Sillyon by turning onto Gebiz Road and following the signs. Take a rest at nearby Yanköy Village, where there is a cafe, a grocery store and a small restaurant.
After visiting Sillyon Ancient City, you can connect to the Antalya-Serik Road via the Yukari Kocayatak Village Road and return to Old Town.