Warm and sunny weather, little or no rain, turquoise blue waters and beautiful mountainous terrain. How could that not sound good? 😉
There’s something about the Turkish Mediterranean. There’s just so much scenery, so many lovely beaches, such reasonably priced food options and so many more things to do along the whole coast.
Have you been to the Turkish Turquoise Coast before? Which is a best part of it to start at? How long do you need? How do you get there? This is an easy way to visit what I define as one of the best coastlines in the world.
The biggest mistake people make when they go to coastal towns in Turkey is that they stay close to the city centres of either Antalya or Fethiye. While those are still great cities that will always give you great experiences, it’s very important to venture further down the coast, where the real beauty is. The good news is, it’s nice and easy! Sit back, relax and let a private driver take you to one of the most beautiful spots on the entire Turkish Turquoise coast, at much less that you think it will cost.
What and where is Oludeniz?
Oludeniz is a beach town located a short drive from Fethiye in Tukey’s Mugla province.
Oludeniz is not too far away from Fethiye in Turkey’s Mugla Province.
What makes Oludeniz so good?
Imagine staying in a small beach town with your hotel, food and grocery shops, gorgeous beaches and mountainous landscapes that are all walking distance from each other? Combine that with excellent prices for everything, warm Mediterranean water and very long days in the summer and you have IDEAL conditions for any coastal experience 😉
Mount Babadag in the background and the Blue Lagoon on the other side of you which are all walking distance from the beach hotels.
How do you get there?
You have to fly to Dalaman airport, most people will have to connect through Istanbul first. There are many cheap direct flights between Istanbul and Dalaman Airport the whole year, with more flights in the summer months. The drive from Dalaman Airport to Oludeniz will take roughly 40 minutes
Transport: Public transport is not the greatest in this region of Turkey. There is no train line. There are buses available that could take you to Oludeniz, although it will be long and you will have to change buses two or three times. Private transport is fortunately nice and easy and won’t cost you as much. Ideally, renting a car would be the best case scenario as there are lots of very cheap cars available at Dalaman Airport terminal.
But for everyone else, you can get a private car with a driver to fetch you from the airport and leave you at your hotel in Oludeniz, and off course take you back to the airport when you are returning. There are a few private transport businesses in the area that offer good prices for this.
What’s to do in the Oludeniz area?
Just steps away from the main street where a lot of the beach hotels and shops are, is Oludeniz Beach. This a nice spaced out public beach located at the base of Mount Babadag.
Oludeniz Beach is surrounded by beautiful scenery and when you look up, the sky is usually full of para-gliders.
The Blue Lagoon
Next to Oludeniz Beach is the stunning Blue Lagoon. There are lots of food and snack options, lots of shaded seating areas and sun loungers. There are also lots of water sports available in the lagoon like Stand up Paddle boarding, canoeing and paddle boats. There is a fee of 10TL to enter and you can stay in for as long as you want until it closes in the evening.
The Blue Lagoon has lots of restaurants, sun-loungers and lots of different water sport options
There are stand-up paddle-boards, canoes and paddle-boats available for rent at the Blue Lagoon.
Paragliding from Mount Babadag:
One of the most noticeable things about Oludeniz when you are anywhere near the beach are all the paragliders in the sky. The base of Mount Babadag (1969m) is right next to Oludeniz Beach. And this is a world famous paragliding spot.
Paragliding off Mount Babadag will give the most stunning view of the whole area.
How it works: There are lots of companies that offer paragliding on Oludeniz Beach. Some can be booked online which can be a good thing as the morning and sunset slots get quite busy in the summer. Once you pay, a large private vehicle will drive you on a hugely exciting narrow road up Babadag Mountain 😉 Where your pilot will take off with you and land on Oludeniz Beach. The whole experience can last between 20 and 50 minutes depending on wind speed.
Paragliding takes off from the top of Mount Babadag and finishes at Oludeniz beach.
The total time of the Paragliding experience ranges from 20 to 50 minutes depending on wind speed and where you take off from.
Butterfly Valley (Kelebekler Vadisi)
I am not sure if this is named Butterfly Valley because of the lots of butterflies that where once there, or because of the Butterfly shape of the valley. You can go to the bottom and be surrounded by mountains which is nice, except I personally prefer the view from the top. This view at the top is a short drive away from Oludeniz. The bottom of the valley could only be accessed by boat for many years, until a trail was made a few years ago.
The Butterfly Valley viewed from the top.
For many years, the only way to visit the Butterfly Valley was with a boat, but now there is a steep trail which connects the top to the bottom.
The Butterfly Valley trail: WARNING: I would rate this trail of medium difficulty. It will take you roughly 3 hours to complete and there are a few points on the trail which require technical climbing. You won’t need any equipment as there are ropes provided. There’s a point which will need you to climb up a near vertical 10 meter cliff and the rocks are extremely slippery. You don’t really need to be very fit, although you will definitely need proper shoes. N.B: Please watch for snakes, I had a close encounter with one and there are not many people that know about this trail as yet so you will very likely have it to yourselves.
The trail is quite steep and requires a little bit of technical climbing, although no equipment is needed as ropes are provided.
View on the way up the Butterfly Valley trail.
Oludeniz has a town that’s a bit further away from the beach area. There are of course much more eating options, shopping malls etc which you can check out if the weather is bad or if you have extra time, although I highly doubt you will want to leave the beach area 😉
One of the best things about the Turkish Turquoise Coast is the amount of roads around the coast. Almost every small hill with a view will have a secret viewpoint with a stunning view! Although most of those roads are unmarked and not surfaced (Some of the roads are not suitable for cars). The great thing is, the locals know them quite well, and why not let them show you these places with you on the back of a Jeep 😉
From Oludeniz Beach, there are LOTS of operators that offer day trips on the coastline with boats of different sizes (eg. Pirate ships). There is a small hut on the beach where you can get a boat trip that suits you best.
There are many different boat operators that offer day trips. These are all located on Oludeniz Beach.
Where do you stay?
Definitely on Oludeniz Beach. There are lots of hotel choices in any price range located on the main street walking distance from Oludeniz Beach. In this way, almost everything will be walking distance to your hotel which is stress free!
How long do you need?
This is the type of place where 7 nights will just go by before you even realise. I would say as much time as you can spend with a minimum of 3 full days. If you have 2 full weeks or more it would be better to do a road trip of the whole Turkish Turquoise Coast and rather stop at Oludeniz for a few days.
What time of the year is best to go?
The peak summer months are from June to August and have great sunshine, amazingly long days and almost no rain, but also lots of tourists and higher prices. I have been to the Turkish Turquoise Coast during peak summer, and if you plan a lot it doesn’t work out as expensive as most other European destinations in the summer. So it all depends on if you are willing to spend a bit more or not. Apart from that, May or September are also great months with excellent weather and lower prices.
If you are a summer kind of a person and love a great beach holiday with excellent scenery, Oludeniz is a must 😉
If you are NOT a summer person, then Oludeniz is a must as well! As it will transform you into a summer kind of a person 😉