The Butterfly Valley near Fethiye is a hidden gem of Turkeys Turquoise Coast. Deep, steep and accessible only by boat or via the Lycian Way walking trail, which is advised against. The Valley has only been visited in the last twenty or so years before that it was relatively untouched and unknown. Luckily due to the valley being inaccessible it has kept intact and pure.
The valley is located at the base of Babadag mountain and is protected by the World Heritage Foundation. It gets it\’s name from the unique butterfly species, who have up until recently been the only residents in the valley for thousands of years. There are over 60 different species of butterfly in the valley some appearing in the day time and others only venturing out at night. There are many rare butterflies and for those who are enthusiasts there is a small museum located in the valley dedicated to giving more in depth information about the species that can be found there.
The unspoiled valley is lush green and has much vegetation, some of the land is being cultivated to produce fresh fruit and vegetable to feed the hungry travelers that are desperate to get away from the hustle and bustle of the nearby tourist areas. Many of those choosing to stay on the island are backpackers, who bring tents or stay in the tree houses provided.
In addition to the clouds of butterflies fluttering by, there are also two small waterfalls to discover, providing a refreshingly cool shower after a hike through the secret valley. There is also a small white pebbled beach on which to relax and paddle in the crystal clear Mediterranean waters.
Many of the boat trips that leave daily from Oludeniz beach make a stop at Butterfly Valley. Visitors are asked to refrain from shouting whilst exploring as the butterflies are very sensitive. Also to preserve the valley by taking your litter away after your visit.
In an area so loved by tourists and the Turkish people themselves, it is a rare treat to find a village so completely untouched and unaltered by man. Faralya delights all those who do venture a visit. A small, quiet village set on the steep hillside just 8 km from Oludeniz, 1200 feet above sea level, Faralya is an ideal day out for adventurous travelers, or an authentic Turkish hide out for those who want to stay longer. Because Faralya has retained its Turkish village status, there is relatively little to do in the village it self (just a few small hotels and cafes), but it is an ideal starting point for many nature based activities, including a starting point for the famous Lycian Trail.
Faralya can be easily reached by dolmus (public minibus) from Olu Deniz, or by taxi. Those who like a bit more of a challenge can reach Faralya by way of an uphill hike from Butterfly valley, which can itself only be reached by boat (or down hill from Faralya!). Be warned, this is by no means easy ground, and it is not recommended for the faint hearted. The breathtaking views and warm hospitality of the people of Faralya however, can be appreciated by everyone.