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Dalyan Guide

Dalyan is established in an environmentally protected area. This is one of the few surviving places of paradise, an area of natural beauty and historical interest. The ancient city of CAUNOS lies here with its ruins dating back to the 3rd Century. The DALYAN channel through which water circulates between the Mediterranean and Koycegiz Lake winds its way down past the ancient Rock Tombs to the sea, via a small network of lakes and waterways. Through the rustling reed beds rising between 3 and 5 metres in height.

With its mixture of fresh and salt water, these wetlands are now home to a vast number of fish and other water life, as well as the birds of many species which feed on them, species such as the Sparrow hawk, Crane, Kingfisher and Jay. The Stork is also native to this area migrating here at the end of March to nest until the end of August.

Dividing the delta is the Iztuzu sandbar stretching for 5 km east from the south of the channel. With fine crystal sand, shallow turquoise sea Iztuzu beach is the ideal seaside spot. Which can be reached by regular dolmus or boat service from DALYAN. This is also the beach where the endangered Loggerhead Turtle (CARETTA CARETTA) and the green turtle (Chelonia Mydas) have returned to lay their eggs since the beginning of time. The nesting time being from May till October 

Dalyan is highly recommended for visitors to TURKEY looking for a real taste of the country without having to go too far off the beaten track. It is still very much a traditional market town and the beauty of the conservation area in which it stands makes it unique in the Mediterranean. Here, where tourism co-exists with the traditional industries of fish-farming and cotton growing, there is something to suit everyone; a must for nature lovers with over 150 varieties of birds and the nesting grounds for the protected loggerhead turtles.

 The ancient lycian rock tombs overlooking the town and the spectacular remains of the city of CAUNOS then there is Turtle Beach - a arguably  the best in Turkey, miles of unspoilt golden sand and clear warm sea to swim in.. With many restaurants offering inexpensive meals and undoubtedly the friendliest people you would ever wish to meet DALYAN has it all a quality holiday for quality visitors.

Dalyan Iztuzu Beach

Twelve Km from the centre of Dalyan lies the seven km long sandbar that juts out from the main land into the Mediterranean. This site was earmarked for development until it was brought to the authority’s attention that it was one of the last nesting grounds for the endangered Loggerhead Turtle.

A campaign with David Bellamy and a local woman Captain June (Haimhoff) were successful in stopping the development of Iztuzu Beach. Visiting times to the beach are restricted from May - September when the Turtles are nesting. From 08.00-18.00 are the open times so as not to interfere with the nesting habits of these Turtles.

Sun beds and shade are available at the beach for a small charge also cold drinks and snacks are served throughout the day. You can reach Iztuzu by Boat or Dolmus, the boat winds its way down the channel, through the rustling reeds to the open tip of the beach. The Dolmus travels lakeside through beautiful winding roads down to the Beach, this takes around 20 minutes, and the boat will take approximately 40 minutes. Both ways are worth seeing, each for a small charge.

Dalyan Caunos

The Calbys river (now known as the Dalyan River) was the border between Caria and Lycia. Initially Kaunos was a separate state; then it became a part of Caria and later still of Lycia.

Kaunos was an important sea port, the history of which is supposed to date back till the 10th century BC. Because of the formation of İztuzu Beach and the silting of the former Bay of Dalyan (from approx. 200 BC onwards), Kaunos is now located about 8 km from the coast. The city had two ports, the southern port at the southeast of Küçük Kale and the inner port at its northwest (the present Sülüklü Göl, Lake of the Leeches). The southern port was used from the foundation of the city till roughly the end of the Hellenistic era, after which it became inaccessible due to its drying out. The inner or trade port could be closed by chains. The latter was used till the late days of Kaunos, but due to the silting of the delta and the ports, Kaunos had by then long lost its important function as a trade port. After Caria had been captured by Turkish tribes and the serious malaria epidemic of the 15th century AD, Kaunos was completely abandoned.

In 1966 prof. Baki Öğün started the excavations of ancient Kaunos. These have been continued up to the present day, and are now supervised by Prof. Cengiz Işık.

The archeological research is not limited to Kaunos itself, but is also carried out in locations nearby e.g. near the Sultaniye Spa where there used to be a sanctuary devoted to the goddess Leto.

Mythology

According to mythology Kaunos was founded by King Kaunos, son of the Carian King Miletus and Kyane, and grandson of Apollo. Kaunos had a twin sister by the name of Byblis who developed a deep, unsisterly love for him. When she wrote her brother a love letter, telling him about her feelings, he decided to flee with some of his followers to settle elsewhere. His twin sister became mad with sorrow, started looking for him and tried to commit suicide. Mythology says that the Calbys River emerged from her tears

Mud Bath

Along the channel of the delta from Köycegiz are The Sultaniye Thermal baths the water is 40 degrees C .The water has been used since Hellenistic times, first by the Carians then the Byzantines.

The ruins from these buildings are now submerged .The waters which contain radioactive elements (harmless) and Hydrogen sulphur are believed to cure rheumatism, skin disorders, liver, spleen and bowel complaints, as well as being beneficial for nervous and digestive disorders

The Mud baths are also said to remedy rheumatism as well as cleanse and beautify the skin. Popular belief states that a mud bath will take ten years off you. Once you have covered yourself in the mud you then wait for it to dry in the sun. The sulphur pool in which you clean yourself after your Mud bath is also at a temperature of 40 degrees

Blue Crab

Sultaniye Hot Springs

Archeological finds both at Kaunos and Sultaniye indicate that there must have been a sanctuary dedicated to the goddess Leto near the present Sultaniye Spa.
Nearby the thermal spring area ruins have been found dating back as far as the Roman era, which show that there must have been a sort of spa and treatment facility ever since the first settlements in the area

The Sultaniye hot springs are located on a fault line at the southwest bank of the lake, on the slope of Ölemez Mountain.
Sulfurous water of 40°C seeps out of a crack next to the Spa’s domed thermal bath, spreading the nasty smell of rotten eggs over the complex. The mildly radioactive water is rich in Radon content and furthermore contains sulfur, iron, calcium, potassium, and other minerals.
It is recommended for -amongst others- skin complaints, arthritis, muscle fatigue and rheumatism. Sultaniye Spa also has mud baths which are said to rejuvenate the skin.

Yuvarlak Cay

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