Together with our friends Tony and Linda, we decided to do a small spring tour starting from Izmir, which should take us to Bozdağ, the ski area right in front of the gates of the metropolis of Izmir.
We had already inquired that snow was hardly to be expected, so we started early in the morning. Since we had already made a detailed tour of the beautiful ancient city of Sardis the day before, we now used the E96 motorway until just before Sahlili (about 81 kilometers from the outskirts of Izmir), and then turned right towards Ödemis.
Bozdağ - an imposing mountain of 2,419 meters
The first part of this route to Birgi was already marked as scenic on our road map, which turned out to be correct. Again and again we stopped at the roadside to enjoy the view of wonderfully green forests and free valley sections in between. After about 15 kilometers we had reached the town of Bozdağ and started to climb the mountain of the same name. With a height of 2,419 meters, the Bozdağ is already an imposing mountain. We came closer to the summit, partly on a gravel road, which was, however, easy to drive on. The gravel road ends at around 1,700 meters above sea level, where the ski center is and the chairlifts begin. As already suspected, the snow had almost completely disappeared, only small snowfields could be seen towards the summit. It doesn't matter, we weren't interested in the snow experience, we were interested in the area and the winter sports facilities.
Without further ado, we continued on foot to the buildings of the ski center, then along the lifts, which certainly left a well-maintained impression. The building and the entire facility were deserted, but we were delighted when the price boards still posted told us that the level was quite cheap, so that you could definitely imagine a short ski holiday here. The entire ski area at Bozdağ is under the administration of the small town of Nikfer, a place I looked for on the map in vain. The connection to the city of Izmir is excellent, the distance also allows a short-term arrival, so that the trip on the weekend is definitely an option.
Gölcük Gölü - Lakeside picnic area
We then drove down the gravel road again, then turned left in the direction of Ödemis to the turn-off to Gölcük. This route is also considered a scenically outstanding route, which was confirmed again immediately. A short time later we stopped at a picnic area, which seemed so inviting that we decided to plunder our provisions basket here on the lake shore. Still a bit cool but with a wonderful view of the lake, which is also simply called Gölcük Gölü after the place, the wooded shore landscape invites you to go for a walk. Even in summer, when the heat is shimmering in the city, it is definitely pleasantly cool and refreshing up here due to the lake's location at around 1,000 meters above sea level.
We then drove into the town of Gölcük, where a wonderful place by the lake invited us to linger. Ok, there is always room for a cup of tea and so we got stuck in nice conversations here too. The rest of the route to Ödemis is also scenically wonderful. Only in the evening did we go along the Kücükmenderes Nehri, the small Menderes, via Torbali, always parallel to the railway line, back to Izmir. A great day trip that can be repeated well to escape from the city, especially in the stuffy summer.
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