We seem to have a knack at the moment of accidentally stumbling across events in the Fethiye region. A couple of days ago, we drove to Kalkan with my dad and, as we didn't stay as long as we had planned to do, we drove to Ölü Deniz before heading off to Cin Bal restaurant in Kayaköy.
The first clue in Ölü Deniz that tells you to look up!On arrival in Ölü Deniz, we saw a troupe of folk dancers getting into a minibus, ready to leave the beach. Something was going on. Loud speakers, banners and advertising hoardings told us we had arrived at the first day of the 1st International Aerobatic Paragliding Championship & Aerobatic Paragliding World Cup in Ölü Deniz; otherwise known as Arcroludeniz.
More paragliding in Ölü Deniz
If you're now wondering why we actually stumbled across this fantastic event, rather than knowing about it via a big build up (we posted about the multitude of events in Fethiye quite recently) well, we have no answers for that. Maybe there are posters around Fethiye that we haven't noticed; and maybe there aren't. This is a fact of life here. We're lucky to have so much going on in this region but some of it does get lost in the mix.
Anyway, we walked along the promenade, saw the posters, saw the dancers, heard the loud music, heard the cheers, spoke to someone we know who works in the area and they confirmed what we suspected. The air games in Ölü Deniz have always taken place in October - but it looks like a similar event may now be taking place over these 4 days in May. Let's hope they still take place in October too - because it would be great to see this sort of event at both the beginning and ends of the season.
We followed the gaze of the crowd in the top photo and saw a world champion paraglider demonstrating exactly why he is a world champion paraglider...
Ölü Deniz is a Mecca for anyone with a love of paragliding. Paragliders are a part of the scenery in the area. Visitors to Ölü Deniz can paraglide from the summit of Babadağ, right down to the landing areas along Belcekiz Beach but it's amazing to watch these competitors performing their skills. 'Yeah, yeah, whatever,' immediately becomes, 'Wow!'
An image of Atatürk trails the chute of this glider in Ölü Deniz
This guy was constantly traversing the skies, up and down the length of Belcekiz Beach while we were in Ölü Deniz. Yes, the skies were dull. The guy in the video above was interviewed later and said the summit of Babadağ was cloudy and cold. Conditions were not ideal paragliding conditions but it was a great show (watch another video of paired paragliders on their descent on our YouTube channel) and there's more to come for those in the area.
The final day of the 1st Turkish International Aerobatic Paragliding Championship & Aerobatic Paragliding World Cup is tomorrow. If you're in this area, go along and give them some support. It's a great sight!