Mountainbike trails at ancient town of Olympos

Ancient town of Olympos

We were turning back to the main road between Antalya and Kumluca, as it was easy to find some advices for Olympos. There is no need for a guide while travelling to Olympos on the research for Mountainbike trails, as we were awaited already.

However, an understanding of the city's history will make each step you take and each historical ruin you see more enlightening and enjoyable. In Lycian times the ancient City/Port of Olympos was one of the members of the Lycian Federation. Because of the wealth of Olympos, it had three (compared to less wealthier cities that had only one) seats in the federation. During this period the city was subject to raids by pirates. Later, the city was rescued by the Roman commander Isauricus. The city's wealth was due to its strategic trading position - it benefited from Genoese and Venetian traders who took advantage of the city's natural harbour.

Moving seventeen centuries on, Olympos is now the destination of those seeking tranquillity in aesthetically pleasing surroundings. Although it is all so easy to get submerged in a place steeped in such history, it has to be remembered that it is not just the past that attracts people to Olympos. The translucent water of the Mediterranean is too tempting to resist. A swimsuit is an absolute must when visiting. Peering in to the sea from a boat, the pebbles appear within hands-reach; they're probably twenty feet away from the tip of the finger! Looking up from the seashore, the city's ancient acropolis is clearly visible on the side of the mountain. Those who wish to rid themselves of the salt after swimming should paddle in the stream that flows through the valley, and then meanders through the Lycian ruins, before eventually reaching the sea. Whilst strolling through the ice-cold stream a sarcophagus comes into sight amongst the ruins of the city. The sarcophagus is that of Captain Eudemos - there is an embossed boat figure and an inscription in his memory. The path that cuts through the pine forest leads to the Roman temple.

We enjoyed at least two days at Olympos after our speding down from Tahtali, which at least lets us pass the fires coming up from the ground since antiquity. Another lovely place where mountainbikers can enjoy trails and nature.

Please read as well:

Phaselis - another ancient Harbout Town next to Antalya

Mountainbiking in Turkey


Life | Outdoors