Day 1: Arrive Izmir Airport and transfer to Selcuk / Sirince
Sirince is a beautiful and very old fashioned wine producing village where you will stay in beautifully restored Greek “Konak” houses. We have time to relax here, enjoy a nice dinner, unpack and build up our bikes and then have a pre-tour briefing. If possible, with an earlier flight into Izmir, we can visit Ephesus this afternoon, leaving more time to enjoy the national park tomorrow! Dinner with fresh and tasty local specialities at the Arsipel Restaurant is a perfect start to the tour.
Overnight Kirkinca Houses Boutique Hotel, Sirince
Day 2: Sirince – Ephesus – Transfer – Camlik – Kirazli (Restaurant lunch- at 20km) Soğucak – Guzelcamli – Dilek National Park Total – Transfer to Lake Bafa
58km / 650m climb / 1150m descent
With a 2-3 hour visit to Ephesus as the focal point, this is a relatively long first day time wise, but the pleasant roads, long downhill section and flat seaside cycleway make the ride hugely enjoyable as well as rewarding. From Sirince we follow a newly surfaced backroad through vineyards, rolling hillsides and forested countryside, enjoying great views over Selcuk and Pamucak Beach beyond. We head on to the ruins at Ephesus, a vast and very well restored ancient city that was the capital of Hellenic Greece. From there, we take a short transfer along the highway to Camlik, and stop to drink Turkish tea in an authentic tea shop. Our route takes us on through fruit orchards and vineyards as it winds up and over rolling hills to Kirazli, where we eat a wonderful lunch of traditional food in one of the garden restaurants there. We continue, climbing on a very quiet and panoramic country road to arrive at the small village of Yaylakoy. From here, after a brief downhill section on a bigger road we drop down to the coast via Sogucak village and enjoy a wonderful traffic free cycle lane right on the sea front. From Guzelcamli, we enter the Dilek Peninsula National Park and ride to the very end of the peninsula road (Karasu Beach). Here there should be a little time for a quick refreshing swim, before the 1.5 hour drive onwards to Lake Bafa and the next section of our journey.
Overnight Selenes Pension, Bafa / Kapikiri
Day 3: Kapikiri – Bafa – Selime – Optional Transfer – Latmos Mountains (Picnic lunch) – Transfer to Bogazici
Total 61km / 1200m climb / 1150m descent
Today we go inland, through mountains and hills strewn with massive granite boulders. After meandering round the lake for 8km we descend on the main road to Selimiye before starting our big climb into the Latmos (Besparmak) mountains. Note- this is a big climb and an uplift is suggested- our driver will be waiting for us in Kandak village at the bottom of the climb to Kayabuku. From there we ride the remaining uphill section and continue through pristine mountain scenery amongst a landscape of huge granite boulders, mature pine trees and small villages where time really has stood still. There are no shops, restaurants or hotels here… We eat a picnic lunch outside a local tearoom in Goldere village and continue up the day’s second big climb to the hilltop village of Narhisar, from where the views are breathtaking! We continue to Ikiztas on a hard packed gravel surface. This rough section is fine even for road bikes with 23mm tyres as long as you take it easy! We carry on eastwards until a massive 10km downhill off the mountains, past Comakdag towards the town of Milas. Before arriving at the town, we take a transfer for 45 minutes past inland salt-flats (where it’s often possible to spot flamingoes) to a part of the coast nearby to Bodrum. Tonight we stay in a fantastic true boutique hotel right on the water’s edge…
Overnight Zena Hotel, Bodrum
Day 4: Transfer to Yukari Mazikoy – Cokertme – Turkevleri – Oren (Restaurant lunch- at 30km) – Transfer – Alatepe – Akbuk – Akyaka
Total 72km / 800m climb / 1600m descent
Today we begin with a 30 minute drive to our start point high on the rugged Bodrum rural hinterland amongst rolling, pastoral hills and Mediterranean garrigue. We begin with an epic descent to arrive at the coast on a deserted asphalt road that runs right along the sea front at Cokertme, the perfect place for a morning drink. We continue east, right on the coast to Oren, where we enjoy a restaurant lunch in the shade of palm trees along a pristine beach. Here we will enjoy wonderful food typical of the Aegean region- fresh salads, mezze and sea food. From Oren we transfer 20 mins to an elevated position at Alatepe village, the panoramas are breathtaking and eventually we arrive again at the coast, high above Akbuk. Akbuk is a protected area and the only development here is a couple of camping and caravanning parks, a small pension and one or two small markets that supply a handful of yachts with essential supplies. The shingle beach is clean, and the jetty makes a perfect diving board into the sea for a post ride cool down! The last section of the ride is pure magic, an easy going and incredibly beautiful single track coast road that may perhaps be the best cycling road in Turkey!
Overnight Elif Hanim Hotel, Akyaka
Day 5: Transfer – Yesilbelde – Hisaronu (Restaurant lunch- at 31km) – Orhaniye – Turgut – Selimiye
Total: 53km / 1000m climb / 1050m descent
This is an easier day, with time to enjoy the excellent hotels and swim in the clear water at Selimiye. From Akyaka, we have a short transfer along the main road before embarking on a wonderful climb through pristine pine forest to Yesilbelde, bypassing the town of Marmaris and enjoying awesome views over the bays, peninsulas and islands below. We rejoin the main road briefly (here with much less traffic after Marmaris), before turning onto the wonderful Bozburun Peninsula at Hisaronu (where we stop for lunch). Here, the coast road is unforgettably picturesque, meandering it’s way between little visited bays and paradise villages along the peninsula, often right on the waterside! Our hotel is right beside the water, in a totally idyllic location- you can swim in the crystal clear water and relax at the beachside. The food and service here is also first class- the hotel is well known amongst the yachting scene.
Overnight Sardunya Hotel, Selimiye
Day 6: Selimiye – Bozburun – Sogutkoy – Bayirkoy (Restaurant lunch- at 30km) – Turunc – Kumlubuk
Total 52km / 1300m climb / 1300m descent
Today we explore the undeveloped and wild Bozburun Peninsula. This is a shorter day, distance wise, but its mountainous route is challenging- though the views and traffic free roads more than make up for it! From Selimiye we begin with a big climb (optional car uplift!) and decent past Bozburun village. Then we head into the mountainous hinterland, climbing into the hills via Sogutkoy to Bayirkoy- a wonderfully picturesque place set in lush, green hills. After enjoying a restaurant lunch here and sampling the many varieties of honey that the region is famous for, we continue on one final climb that brings us out high above the coast once more. The ride is a mixture of awesome coast roads and steep mountain lanes through pristine pine forest. We finish our ride with a long downhill to the coast to Turunc, with the tourist town of Marmaris a distant view across the bay. Here we stay in idyllic luxury in Kumlubuk, a wonderful hidden gem of a place at which to finish a great day!
Overnight Maris Hotel, Kumlubuk
Day 7: Transfer – Koycegiz – Sultaniye – Candir – Kaunos – Dalyan – Iztuzu Beach – Dalyan
Total 64km / 1250m climb / 1250m descent
After a 1 hour transfer, bi-passing Marmaris, we start with an easy ride along backroads to the lakeside town of Koycegiz where we can enjoy a nice morning drink on the lakeside. We then embark on a fantastic tour around Koycegiz Lake. We ride through Sultaniye and Candir before stopping to explore the ancient city and admire the massive Lycian rock tombs at Kaunos. We finally arrive at the river side and take a taxi boat across the water to arrive in Dalyan, where we enjoy a nice lunch on the riverside. In the afternoon, we ride the 26km round trip to and from Iztuzu Beach- one of Turkey’s wildest and most beautful protected sandy beaches, that is home to nesting Caretta Caretta turtles in the summer season. For the last night’s meal we will take you out to one of the best restaurants in Dalyan- you will go home with many great memories of the food on this trip- for sure!
Overnight Dalyan Pansion, Dalyan.
Day 8: Transfers and Travel
Our last day together- time to pack up bikes and enjoy a lazy breakfast on the riverside. We transfer to Dalaman Airport for connecting flights.
Tour ends here.