A lot has been said, written and read about Turkey. While the beauty, rich culture, and intriguing history of this country can’t be denied or argued upon, it is the mind-blowing Turkey road-trips that are the most underrated things to do in the country.
No, we are not talking about the ‘feel good road trips’ here, but ones that are filled with adventure at every curve; ones which increase your heartbeat every few kilometres; and ones brave-hearts can’t afford to not take…
Give the routine Turkey tour a miss, buy a Turkey road map, get into an SUV, and embark on a journey which will change your life for sure.
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Turkey Road Trip – Bayburt of Yolu
Hands down the most challenging road of the world, D915 or ‘Bayburt of Yolu’ is ‘just’ 106 kms long. What’s interesting is that these 106 km comprise of 29 steep hairpins, making it extremely difficult for even the most daredevil drivers to navigate! There are certain sections of the road that are so narrow, that there is not enough space for two cars to pass, so one might have to reverse the car for a good few kilometres for other to pass! Besides, it gets tough and nightmarish during rains and after dark. Even the most seasoned drivers refuse to drive on this patch during extreme weather conditions – snowfalls, landslides are common, and sudden snowstorms can make the roads slippery.
No words, no pictures, can possibly describe the thrill of driving down this highway – a mind-numbing experience that will be etched into your memory forever.
Turkey Road Trip – Kus Yuvasi Pass
A zig-zag mountainous road bordered on one side by cliffs and exposed by lack of guardrails on the other, and winding up as high as 1401 metres above sea level, driving on Karapınar-Gumuskavak road is nothing short of flirting with danger!!! Not meant for a novice or the fainthearted, this road taking you uphill to a high mountain pass, Kus Yuvasi, is scary and thrilling at the same time. Taking the extreme to a whole new level altogether, this road, full of sharp hair-pin turns, often experiences avalanches, heavy snowfalls and landslides, making the tough driving conditions even tougher.
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Turkey Road Trip – Kemaliye Tas Yolu
Skim through the guides of the main guidebooks aimed at foreign visitors — Lonely Planet, Rough Guide or the Blue Guide — and you won’t find one word about Kemaliye.
‘One of the extreme roads of Turkey’ is yet another phrase to describe Kemaliye Tas Yolu. Tell a friend that you’re going to Kemaliye, and in response you’ll get a blank look, followed by a quick, “Where’s that?” Situated in the Eastern Anatolia region of Turkey, Kemaliye Tas Yolu is one of the most deadly roads in the world. It is said that it took over 100 years for this road to be built – drive to this place and you will know why!
The road traverses through an astonishing 4,722 meters of separate tunnels, each of them carved out of the mountains. One of the tunnels passes through the Dark Canyon or Karanlik Kanyon, which is so deep that even the sun rays can’t reach its bottom!
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Turkey Road Trip – Mt. Uludag
At a whopping 7000 feet+ above sea level, Mt. Uludag mountain pass not only offers spectacular views of the country, but visitors can also experience real adventure as they reach the summit. Mysian Olympus or Mt Olympus is the highest mountain of north-western Turkey and its summit is known for its National Park as well as the various winter activities on offer.
Though a major portion of this state road D575 is smooth, making the journey very enjoyable, certain sections are paved with cobblestone – apparently a ploy used to force drivers to lower down their speed. The road is open all throughout year, except for the winters, when it can be occasionally shut down if the access is not cleared of snow.
The snow-capped mountains and the ever-changing weather together make this trip an exciting one!
Turkey Road Trip – Uzungol Lake Road
Inaccessible, incredibly beautiful, and nestled between the lofty mountains – every inch of the road leading to Uzungol Lake is challenging. With 30 nerve-wrecking hairpin turns, this 288 km-long mountain road is at an elevation of 3,690 feet above sea level!
Waking up to tourist boom in recent years, the government has improved the infrastructure of the Uzungol village, straddling the lake’s coast. The investments are pouring in and the village is now dotted with number of souvenir shops, hotels and restaurants.
Looking for flights to Uzungol?
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