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Wild Camping

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

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Wild camping in Turkey is pretty easy, if you’re prepared to use a little imagination. I’ve shown pictures of my camps regularly in this blog, but I think Turkey is the best country I’ve wild camped in purely and simply because of the varied options available. Myself and Buggi camped in a public park, even gathering quite a crowd to watch me cook our meal – we should have sold tickets!

But it’s in the countryside where the best camping is and here’s one from this week. First, eye up a likely spot:

I noticed the trees were sat on a nice patch of grass…

You may get the odd shepherd walking by, but it’s unlikely anyone from the road will come and investigate as it’s a fair way down a rough track and then a walk into the field. Pack as much as you can into the tent anyway.

Keep it tidy and simple…

The key is planning. I look at the (digital) map and if their is a nearby water source (e.g. lake) I’ll take a look, but if you’re traveling through miles of farm or barren land (as above) I’ll stock up with water in preparation for the camp.

How many would have ridden on by?

I spent last night by a small lake and although I couldn’t go swimming in it, I did have a bath. Earlier in the day I’d gone swimming in a river I noticed I would be passing near Karakeçili – the temperatures are touching 50 degrees Celsius, so I’m taking every opportunity to cool down.

Stunning Landscape

Just outside Nalihan I passed a nature reserve, but wasn’t allowed to swim! The scenery now that I’m heading inland is absolutely wonderful, the rock formations glow with color and everywhere you look you’re surrounded by hills and mountains. Here’s a few more images from the area around the nature reserve:

A bird watchers dream location


Quite a viewpoint


Looks inviting – but swimming not allowed!!


The visitor center

The smaller towns are either sat in amongst the hills, or straddle the roadside. Göynük is a typical example and a pretty nice place to stop for a rest up.

Perched on a hillside – Göynük


A typical roadside town

Every village or town has a mosque, some more ornate than others…

A small town mosque


Large mosque just outside Ankara center

Ankara – bet you thought I’d passed it by? To be honest maybe I should have done, as it’s just a glorified building site. Return in a few years time and maybe the construction will be (mostly) finished and then it would be worth a look. I was not impressed, but maybe coming in via the back road took something away. A note here, be very careful choosing your roads in Turkey, this one was marked as a main route:

The back road into Ankara

I chose the back road because it brought me out on the industrial estate where the Decathlon store is located. Maybe I should have twigged it was a bit ‘rural’ when I saw the goats!

A large herd of goats

Then again, rural can be great for photography…

Rows of sunflowers

I’m now just a days ride away from Cappadocia and I’m getting quite excited at the prospect of exploring this historic and very picturesque area. Stay tuned…

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