Sapanca Gölü - local recreation near Istanbul

Sapanca Gölü - local recreation near Istanbul

We were driving on the highway from Istanbul towards Ankara about 15 kilometres after passing Izmit, when we have seen the Sapanca Lake in all its beauty, shimmering blue, on the left.

Up to now the highway ran along the deep, tectonic rift between the Bay of Izmit and Adapazari just passing through treeless, sometimes almost bare hills; the devastating earthquake had a terrible effect on nature too. Just slowly nature does regain its terrain with small bushes and the first saplings.

Due to the loss of the forest in this region, which also regulates the water balance, almost all of the watercourses feeding the lake have dried up completely in the summer. Since the Sapanca Lake is one of the few lakes in Turkey that is also used to obtain drinking water, the connection with the loss of forest leads to lower water levels in the lake, despite the large water catchment area of ​​approx. 250 square kilometres of hills in the north and south. In addition, there is the enormous settlement pressure due to the proximity to the metropolitan areas of Izmit and Istanbul, whose populations had heavily polluted the lake and its surroundings through environmental pollution and sewage from the inhabited areas.

Controls should help improve water quality

b_450_450_16777215_00_images_turkey_marmara_sapanca-see-2.jpgThe constant controls in recent years have contributed enormously to protecting the water quality and the environment so that they can continue to be used as an important destination for day trips or weekend vacations in an enchanting natural beauty. Today the Sapanca lake is also an insider tip among the "fishing tourists" because the location of the lake makes it possible to fish for rainbow trout and pike.

In general, the increase in fishing tourism clearly shows another advantage of Turkey, because here you can even catch salmon in a relatively small area with short distances. The Atlantic salmon, which have mostly "escaped" from settled fish farms and often become huge due to the plentiful supply of food in the Black Sea, can be caught relatively easy in the lowlands and estuaries of rivers, especially in spring. The fisherman then takes short distances to get to the various plateaus with their lakes and rivers, which offer plenty of pike, perch, catfish and carp, and the higher rivers are a paradise for trout fishing.

The Sangarius Roman Bridge is also worth a visit

b_450_450_16777215_00_images_turkey_marmara_sangarius-bridge.jpgIf you also have time for a stop at Sapanca Gölü on your travels through Turkey or even want to go out to the lake for a weekend, please do not forget to visit the Roman Sangarius Bridge of Emperor Justinian, which has an inkling of the Roman bridge building art of the 5th century AD. In general, one should remember that Pliny, the governor of Bithynia, was working on planning documents in his day that included a canal (Pliny Canal) from the bay in Izmit, including the Sapanca Lake and the Sakarya Nehri river, to the Black Sea. It sounds fascinating and unbelievable at the same time when you look at the vastness of the region from the point of view of the level lines that such a canal would bring with it.

In spring and autumn, large flocks of birds can often be observed at Lake Sapanca, which stop here for a short rest on the way to their wintering quarters. There are several reasons to look at the Sapanca. Have lots of fun with it.

Please also read:

Weimar - tour through the pedestrian zone
The Venetikos River at the Grevena conglomerate gorge


Life | Outdoors