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By ERSIN DEMIREL
The Bay of Adrasan, whose spellbinding beauty attracts nature lovers, is
one of the Mediterranean's hidden treasures. A nyone who has gone from
Antalya to Kumluca will know. About 100 km down the road when you look in
the direction of the sea, a lake appears, surrounded by green mountains
with a beach in the shape of a bow. If you heed the irresistible call of
the water and take the sharply curving road from the turnoff for Olimpos,
a pleasant surprise awaits you. The 22-km road goes first to Cavuskoy,
then, winding through orange groves and greenhouses, it ends at a bay with
pine trees nestled against the Beydaglari mountains. This is Adrasan Bay,
which preserves its splendid beauty like a precious treasure, offering its
blessings only to privileged nature lovers.
TOURISM SUMMER AND WINTER
The buildings at Adrasan, which was incorporated as a township in 1996,
have been withdrawn 100 m from the shore in keeping with a new zoning
ordinance. The 2-km strip of beach lined with hotels, pensions and
restaurants is permeated with fascinating natural beauty. With its
silhouette like a kneeling camel, Elig Tepesi, a hill which is an
extension of Musa Dagi to the east, adds an unusual aspect to the beach.
The view of the bay is spectacular from the top of the hill, an hour's
walk away. And from the old mine on the hill, which is covered with pine
trees on the west, you can get an unmatched panoramic view encompassing
both Elig Tepesi and Tahtali Dagi. Two tiny streams empty into the sea at
points on either side of the bay. Early risers will catch an unforgettable
view of the sun suddenly bursting out of the sea like a big orange tree.
While walking on the beach at sunrise, you can collect the brownish yellow
screw shells that are unique to Adrasan. The crystalline sea, visible to a
depth of 25 m, offers optimal conditions for diving and underwater
photography. And surfing, water skiing, paddle boats and canoeing are also
available. But the most popular part of Adrasan is the stream of the same
name, which is lined with pensions reached by small wooden suspension
bridges reminiscent of the bridges over the Bosphorus at Istanbul.
These authentically furnished 'pavilions' on the water, which is peopled
by perpetually ravenous ducks, offer an unusual atmosphere.
Acting like a natural air conditioner, a special current over the stream
disperses the humidity and provides a cool breeze even in the sweltering
heat of summer.
The boats swaying gracefully along the shore offer holiday-makers two
equally magnificent routes for a 'blue cruise'. On the first, the boats
head for an island off Cape Gelidonya, Suluada, which is known for its
natural springs that can cure kidney ailments. The island also boasts a
beach the color of bottle glass with tiny white pebbles, which is a refuge
for the Mediterranean seal. Boats proceeding parallel to Suluada are in
for a big surprise. The last stop on this cruise, which passes through a
narrow tunnel wide enough for only small boats, is Kelleci Bay, where
natural spring water seeps down from the rocks and the beach has
coarse-grain sand. The second route includes Gemleyik, an interesting
fjord, as well as a phosphorescent blue cave and the bays of Ceneviz and
Sazak on either side of the peninsula. This cruise ends with Cirali Bay
and a tour of the ancient city of Olympos. The walking paths around
Adrasan Bay, where the pine trees grow down to the sea, provide another
alternative for those seeking escape from the sun. The dirt road on the
left goes to Sazak Bay, two hours from Adrasan. The hill behind this bay,
which is one of the frequent routes of yachts setting out on a 'blue
cruise', provides a matchless view of both Sazak and Ceneviz Bays. The
road to the right of Adrasan Bay will take you first to a tiny cove where
boats moor in winter and then to the tiny Adrasan lighthouse at the point.
A pleasant two and a half hour hike along the 'Lycian Way' trekking route,
which is indicated by red and white signs, will bring you to the ancient
city of Olympos at the summit of Musa Dagi, where you can breathe the air
of the ancient city as you stroll amidst the ruins.
But you can't come to Adrasan without seeing Cape Gelidonya. A day trip
will let you enjoy the Mediterranean's endless beauty from early morning
to dusk. The first stop on this trip is Cape Gelidonya (Kirlangic), which
constitutes the eastern tip of the Bay of Antalya.
An approximately 25-minute walk will bring travelers with a passion for
discovery to a fairytale realm -Gelidonya Lighthouse, a narrow strip of
land piercing the heart of the Mediterranean, and the Besadalar islands
that surround it. On the return you can take a break for a swim at tiny,
secluded Korsan Bay, where the ruins of the ancient city of Melanippe are
located. The landing at Papaz Iskelesi is ideal for cooling off. After
Gelidonya peninsula and countless bays with views of the Besadalar, you
will come to the summer houses at Mavikent, adorned with colorful flower
boxes and built on wooden stilts with wheels against the threat of
And don't forget to bid the Mediterranean blue a final farewell from the
hill with the ruins. Pleasantly exhausted, you're ready now to begin your
return ... until the beauty here, of which you can never get enough, calls
you back once again.