Yenice Forest Trail Turkey
Located in Northern Turkey, the Yenice Forest Trail is known as one of the nine hot spots of biodiversity in Turkey. This title was given to the forest by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in 1999 and remains true to date. The trail is a bed of rare breeds of plant and animal life and a way to immerse yourself in nature, some of which isn’t seen anywhere else in the world.
The trail comprises a combined 436 kilometres with 21 main trails that cover 210 kilometres and alternative trails that make up for the rest and add up to 436 kilometres. The highlight of these trails is the Nature Protection Zones that contain the Arboretum area and monumental trees, many of which are rare in diameter, length and even their species. The Yenice Forest also offers diversity in its trails as you can easily consider day trips, shorter trips or long, arduous treks according to the time you have available. Additionally, an extension project has resulted in 8 new routes added to the original 21. These routes are under the ‘Trekking Routes From Nature to History – Eskipazar’ and extend up to Eskipazar (Karabuk) to include the ruins of Hadrianoupolis. Mountain biking is also a pleasant option that many choices and this trail cover approximately 292 kilometres and takes you through a route that exposes much of the nature that the forest has to offer. Read on to find out the path that is best suited to your needs and choose an adventure worthy of your great Turkish trip.
Paths to Take in Yenice Forest
When you choose the Yenice Forest Trail, it is easy to be overwhelmed with the choices laid out in front of you. The routes have multiples tracks that you can choose to follow, and it is impossible to do and see everything. Choosing wisely is your only option.
The Yenice Forest Trail has 7 short tracks which last a couple of hours and 13 one day tracks for those who are short of time. There are also 5 longer tracks meant for serious hiking, but with easy to follow trails that have paved paths in some parts and rugged forest grounds in some.
There is also no shortage of adventure when you opt for the Yenice Forest Trails. Up to 7 bicycle trails and 3 tracks made especially to discover the forest while also trailblazing upon an SUV safari.
Another feature that you can opt for should you choose to tackle the trail in the summer months is canyoning and valley passages. This is a truly immersive experience, only meant for seasoned hikers and adventurers. You will be expected to cross brooks and babbles of water laden with wet rocks as you move forward in your path. The slippery road ahead calls for adventure and tremendous views. If you do still select this option, preparing accordingly is highly recommended as you will need rubber shoes, dry bags and a lighter load to carry.
Along the Routes
There is plenty to see along the routes of the Yenice Forest Trail, and every route leads to a different set of attractions, each more mesmerizing than the other. The Yenice Forest Trail allows you to be one with nature through both activities and nature, keeping your hike exciting and fresh at every turn.
One of the first things you ought to do on any trail that you choose is to visit the Arboretum and discover the biodiversity of the forest yourself. You will spot rare greens like the Turkish Hazel and Yew while also taking in the sheer size and scope of the monumental trees. Once you’ve gotten your photographic evidence and unravelled each part of the Arboretum, you can choose your pick of the must-visits (Although we recommend squeezing in as many as possible. This is possible if you choose the week-long treks instead of the shorter ones).
Another must-see is the Safranbolu houses, which is part of the UNESCO World Heritage List. The town is the best-preserved part of Anatolia, and the houses are all 2 to 3 storeys, following the gradient of the streets. The town and the houses preserve the 13th-century architecture with their UNESCO protection and take you back to simpler times.
You can visit the vast Goktepe Plateau and the Keltepe Summit for challenging hikes and a burst of the mountain spirit. Stay overnight at the famous Karabük Eğriova Lagoon or the boutique hotel at Incebacaklar village for a relaxing experience before you begin to hike the next day.
You can embark on a photography tour to capture the changing colours of the trees and the blossom of the diverse flowers. If photos aren’t your choice of memorabilia, get one of the handcrafted canes that are specially made from trees that are local to the Yenice Forest region.
To get your adrenaline pumping, you can visit the Grand and Small Seker Canyons and even choose to hike them (as mentioned above). History buffs will revel at the natural cave paintings of the legendary Ataturk in Incebacaklar and the ruins of Hadrianoupolis and Kimistene that are a part of the extended trek from Yenice to Eskipazar.
Planning and Preparation
Like any other hiking experience, the Yenice Forest trail requires some planning and preparation before you choose to embark on it. Choosing the route and duration of your hike is one of the foremost things that you must do. Any packing and camping equipment you take afterwards depends solely on that. Since the trail is a hotspot for biodiversity, it is also advised not to litter or cause harm to the protected areas.
The following camping facilities are available for overnight stays and rest: Kent Forest, Dariyazi Forest Facilities, Sekermese Forest Facilities, Karakaya Forest Facilities, Sorgun Plateau, Egriova Karabuk Lagoon, Findikalti, Buyukduz, Kure Havuzu, Gokpinar, Goktepe Plateau, Sureyya Pine Grove, and Municipality Observation Terrace Bungalow Facilities.
The entire trail is marked with signposts from beginning to end with red and white paint markers. For optimum temperatures during your hike, it is advised that you opt to do the hike between April and November. Travelling to the Yenice Forest in the north is an easy task, with coaches running from both Istanbul and Ankara.
Check out our blog for more hikes and trails in Turkey.
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