We’re continuing a bit of a tale, here; the tale from when our friends were over for New Year – when we hired a car to enjoy the rare occurrences of sunshine that graced us at least for a couple of days while they were in Fethiye. On the first day, we went down to one of their favourite places and took lots of photographs of Gemiler Bay before heading on back up to Kayaköy to meet friends and enjoy a winter’s evening at Cin Bal Restaurant.
So where to go the following day? There are so many easy day trips from Fethiye that you can make but we wanted to stay relatively local – for us, winters are for chilling out, remember – and we also wanted to go somewhere our friends hadn’t seen before. What better than to enjoy the easy contrasts of the Fethiye area…one day, we were in the sunshine, enjoying the beach at Gemiler and the next…we were in Kırkpınar.
A short drive from Fethiye is the village of Yeşil Üzümlü, famous for making dastar. Wow, our friends hadn’t been there, either, so it was a drive up the mountain to get to the snow and then a drop back down to Üzümlü.
An easy – and completely different – day out from Fethiye. We headed towards Üzümlü, ignored the turn off for the village and continued up and up and up and up along the main road that eventually takes you to Denizli via huge mountains.
Passing Nif (famous for its huge, juicy cherries in springtime), we continued upwards until we reached Kırkpınar. This is the place where everyone comes to play in the snow – especially on a winter Sunday afternoon.
This is the place where we went to make snowmen and sledge on a Sunday afternoon a few years ago. On that day, the place was heaving – but on the day we were with our friends this time around, it was Monday and we had the whole place to ourselves, bar a few mountain goats.
There’s very much an alpine feel to the scenery at Kırkpınar and it’s always a weird feeling to be up here, knowing Fethiye and warmth are just at the bottom of the hill.
Since we took these photos, much more snow has fallen so the rocky hillsides are probably completely white at the moment.
The winter daylight hours are short in January and these are roads with ample warning signs telling drivers to use snow chains.
As there were ominous looking grey clouds tumbling in above us and the temperature was starting to plummet, we decided it was sensible to start heading back towards Üzümlü after taking a few photos…because we had no chains, and, even if we did, messing about trying to get those on is not really chilling out is it?
And this is the contrast that we just love so much. 10 minutes further up the road, behind us, is all that snow we’ve just left in our wake. Now, we’re overlooking the lush green of lower mountains, we’re overlooking Üzümlü (in the distance on the left) and we’re overlooking the whole bay of Fethiye (you can just make out the sea on the top right of this photo). Late afternoon and the sun is reflecting off the sea below – we stood here, on a peak at the side of the road, for some time, just taking in the scenery and taking photos.
And then it was time to enjoy the rest of the daylight and take in Üzümlü. We’ll tell you about that in the next blog post, though…
Fethiye to Kırkpınar Day Trip – Useful Info
- If you want to drive up towards Kırkpınar in winter, the road is cleared of snow often as it’s a main route to Denizli. However, check the weather before you set off because, when the snow starts to fall, the road can cover with black ice and snow in minutes. We knew the road was clear because friends had been up there the day before and the weather had been clear all night.
- Fethiye to Kırkpınar is about an hour’s drive (maximum).
- There is a restaurant at Kırkpınar famous for its homemade village bread. It’s signposted as you drive up the road.
- For more ideas of day trips and other activities, here’s our blog post of 5 things to do in Fethiye in winter.