Olympos is located in the Antalya region of Turkey. It is a pretty small yet beautiful town, where one can walk down to almost all the places.There are mountains on the 3 sides and a beach on the 4th side. So people can hike on the mountain as well as chill by the beach. And if you think it’s over then you probably don’t know that this place has a history which dates back to the 4th century BC. And yet, the exact date is still unknown.
From the village, the beach is just 500 meters. And on the way there is an ancient Lycian city, completely in ruins but beautiful in its own way. On going further down the way, there are ruins of the bath house right opposite to the river. Small streams & waterfalls can be found at different places. The nature is at its best in Olympos. The beach itself was very clean with just a handful of people. A small place with so much to do!
The beaches of Antalya were always on my bucket-list. To make my experience one of a kind, I inquired with the locals about the beaches, which were neither popular nor crowded. But everyone recommended me the touristic & expensive ones. However, One of the guy I met in Cappadocia recommended us to go to Olympos & that’s how we stumbled upon this off-beat place. He told his stories & how he spends months there, every year. This guy described it as a heaven for backpackers, which automatically increased my want to visit this small fishing village. This place is generally off the radar & people are completely unaware of this village.
We booked the bus till Kemer bus station from Eskisehir. On reaching the bus station we tried to communicate with the locals for directions to another bus station. With the help of broken Turkish & sign language we could figure out the bus station. Thankfully the locals were very helpful and directed us to the right spot for the bus. One thing I absolutely love about traveling is that people are always ready to help when asked for.
On reaching, I instantly fell in love with this place. We set out to explore the ancient city & the beach. We spent the entire evening on the beach, playing in the water and then at night looking at the sky full of stars. The stars were shining at its brightest & we completely lost track of time. It was absolutely magical! Sometimes doing nothing can also turn out to be complete bliss. During our time there, we met a lot of people who would work odd jobs for months in Turkey and then head to another place and keep repeating the same. Listening to their adventures was a completely different experience in itself.
For me Olympos literally means beauty. Although we spent just 2 days here, we honestly could stay for a month in this place just doing nothing and relaxing with the cats, beaches and mountains. But just like all good thing comes to an end so did our experience.
PLANNING FOR OLYMPOS:
A lot of research went into planning for Olympos as it was not well-known destination. But believe me when I say, it was just worth it! There’s some different vibe in the atmosphere which I had never experienced before. The laid-back life & the azure waters is therapeutic and is also a great source of stress-buster from the routine life.
HOW TO REACH:
Reaching here is a pretty hard task. But well worth it! The best way is to travel by bus till Kemer bus station. From there take another mini bus going towards Kas or Fethiye. On the way get down at the Olympos main road bus station. Then from the main road, another mini-bus takes you inside the Olympos village.
Kemer is the nearest bus station. However, alternatively you can also travel till the Antalya bus station and take a mini-bus till Olympos main road bus station. From where another mini-bus goes inside the Olympos village. No matter which bus station you get down at, a total of 3 buses are required to reach Olympos.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
Accommodation & Food: This place is great option for budget travelers as it costs around $15-$20 including breakfast & dinner everyday. Which means except Lunch, everything else is included. The food is also delicious and one can find Turkish food as well as the fast food options.
Transportation: The best part about Olympos is that it’s a pretty small town and hence almost all the places can be covered by foot. There is no internal transport in this town because everyone prefers to walk down to all the places.
Activities: Visiting the beach and the ancient city costs some money only if you wish to enter between 9 am – 5 pm. Before 9 & after 5 the entry is free. You can also buy a pass for multiple entry to the beach, which costs about $7. The guided tour to chimaera which costs about $1-$2.
WHERE TO STAY?
Almost all the accommodation in Olympos have tree houses, which means you will actually live in a tree house. If you haven’t already experienced living in one, then this is the right time. Also, this city caters to backpackers, solo travelers, families as well as couples. What else do you need? Here are the options to consider:
Luxury: Olympos Village Hotels
Mid-range: Olympos Deep Green Bungalows
Economical: Bayrams Tree Houses
THINGS TO DO:
1) Visiting the beach
One great thing about the beach in this city is that you’ll just find handful of people. This beach doesn’t have a picturesque powdery sand but is in fact covered with colorful rocks. All three sides of the beach are covered by mountains and hiking enthusiasts can undertake rock climbing or even trekking to nearby areas. Entry to this beach & the ancient city is not free between 9 am-5 pm. However, before 9 & after 5 it is absolutely free. The tickets can be obtained at the entrance.
2) Ancient city
The ancient Lycian city lies midway to the beach and is a site worth visiting even though most of it is in ruined state. It is a pretty small structure and won’t take more than 10 minutes to just look around. One can only marvel at the construction as this was constructed by people who lived during the 4th Century BC, without any infrastructure.
You can also opt for a guided tour to Chimaera at night for seeing the burning rocks of Mount Olympos. It is a natural phenomenon where the gas beneath the mountain, comes in contact with the air, which results into flames. This is happening since ages without any external fuel. It is necessary to visit this place with a guided tour as it is located on a mountain which has steep slopes. Also, don’t forget to carry torches.
The coastline of Turkey consists of several turquoise beaches and it has attracted people since plenty of years. It has a plethora of beaches & it’s almost difficult to choose one from so many. I’m glad I trusted the guy from Cappadocia and went ahead with this off-beat beach. Olympos is now added as one of my favorite destinations in the world.
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