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Ecotourism, a new concept of responsible travel that focuses on conserving the environment and local culture, is gaining popularity in Turkey. Whether it’s volunteering at an organic farm or just taking some time off in nature’s midst, here are the country’s top ecotourism destinations.
Certainly one of the most modern alternatives to ecotourism in Turkey, Narköy lies in the province of Kocaeli and is an education facility, farm, and hotel. Whether you stay in a lodging unit or a nomad tent, Narköy’s classes and organic farming give visitors a chance to immerse themselves in the world of eco-friendliness and sustainability. Of course, everything on offer at the restaurant is entirely organic and downright delicious. You can take part in workshops about such topics as permaculture or how to make your own jam as you take in the beautiful natural surroundings.
Quite aberrant from the summer tourist hot spot of Fethiye, Pastoral Vadi sits in an idyllic valley in the Yanıklar Village. Accommodation comes in the form of stone, wood, or mud-brick houses surrounded by pure natural surroundings, while everything edible comes from the on-site organic farm. A real opportunity to get away from urban life and live on a beautiful farm in the middle of nature, Pastoral Vadi hosts retreats, training programs, seminars, and camps where visitors can learn something about living an organic and sustainable lifestyle. The hotel/farm is also a great place for children who can partake in the special Art and Play Camp between July and August.
Set within an orchard filled with organic tangerine, plum, walnut, pecan, grapefruit, pomegranate, apple, and orange trees, Akdeniz Bahçesi is not only a fruit paradise, but it’s also close to the very heavenly Çıralı Beach in Antalya. This ecotourism haven, which offers guests self-catering cottages, is a place to immerse yourself in utter peace and is also ideal for families with children. You can wake up to the smell of jasmine and mimosas, spend a day at the beach, and take a boat tour to the nearby coves.
Akdeniz Bahçesi, Ulupınar Mahallesi, 07980 Kemer/Antalya, Turkey, +90 242 825 72 98
For those who are fond of camping in the midst of wild nature, the Hızır Ecological Camp is a perfect destination located in the Kirişlik Valley belonging to Mount Ida. You can stay in a beautiful wooden house composed of 100% natural materials, take a yoga class, go swimming in the lake, or take a long trekking trip through the national park.
Belonging to the Buğday Association for Supporting Ecological Living, the Tatuta Project (which stands for Eco-Agro Tourism and Voluntary Knowledge and Skills Exchange on Organic Farms in Turkish) allows volunteers to choose from a network of approximately 87 farms from all around Turkey. The various farms not only allow volunteers to get their hands dirty but also host workshops and are the perfect and eco-friendly alternative to a standard vacation.