Key information: Taurus Mountains
- The Taurus Mountains are dramatic and remote, characterised by sheer rock walls and barren peaks deeply cut by valleys and canyons.
- Rugged landscapes, wild, craggy canyons and gorgeous lakes, streams and pastures, some spectacular views from on high.
- A mountain range within a mountain range, make sure you venture into Ala Daglar's vast expanse in the central Taurus. Easy access from Cappadocia.
- ANYONE GOT ANY GOOD PHOTOS? WE WOULD BE DELIGHTED TO POST THEM!
- Walkopedia rating85
- Natural interest16
- Human interest5
- Negative points0
- Total rating85
- Length: Variable
- Level of Difficulty: Variable
THIS PAGE IS AT AN EARLY STAGE OF DEVELOPMENT. PLEASE HELP US BY MAKING SUGGESTIONS AND SENDING PHOTOS! THANK YOU!
The Toros Mountains (traditionally spelled Taurus) form a 500km barrier between Turkey's southern coast and the plains of Anatolia.
Much of the Taurus Mountains seems impenetrable, but you can traverse it on old caravan routes (including the St Paul Trail), hike its canyons and get up into the remote, craggy high country which shelters magical pastures and lakes.
Other accounts: share your experiences
Your comments on this walk, your experiences and suggestions, and your photos are very welcome. Where appropriate, you will be credited for your contribution.
Books and Maps
Books on this walk
The Mountains of Turkey - Cicerone
Turkey Country Guide - Lonely Planet
Turkey Travel Guide - DK Eyewitness
The Rough Guide to Turkey - Rough Guides
South from Ephesus: Travels through Aegean Turkey - Brian Sewell
Your best bet may be to look for maps locally, although there are no guarantees you'll find what you need.
Best times to walk/weather
Best times to walk
Generally fine in season, but come prepared for unpredictable mountain weather and cold nights.
Those on organised expeditions are likely to be transported from/to arranged start and departure points which could be arranged to be (e.g.) Goreme in Cappadocia.
Possible problems, health, other warnings
- Altitude: Likely to affect you a bit in the higher areas: expect to puff and perhaps a mild headache, try to acclimatize steadily.
- Mountain weather: snow, rain, severe cold and wind are possible at any time of year and the weather can change rapidly. Come prepared.
- Heat and strong sun. Carry enough water and protect yourself.
- Heights: can be dangerous; not for those who have difficulties with heights.
- Harmful animals of all shapes and sizes, including snakes, stinging/biting insects and plants. (There are even a few leopards left in remoter areas!)
- Canyon dangers: canyons can be lethal, particularly as a result of flash floods. Assess and prepare for all risks on those walks involving canyons. In particular, check the weather carefully and don’t go after rain or if it is possible.
- This is remote country: you will have to carry all your food and other supplies and help will be hard to get if things go wrong.
- Health risks: you will not get prompt medical help of a standard available elsewhere if you become ill. Come prepared, including getting all appropriate inoculations/medications.
- Beware of dogs: throw stones if they threaten, keep well clear if possibly rabid.
See also the websites in our useful links page for more detailed, and up-to-date, information.
Safety and problems: All walks have inherent risks and problems can arise on any walk. Many of the walks featured on this website involve significant risks and possible problems. This website cannot, does not purport to, identify all actual or potential risks, dangers and problems that may relate to a walk or a country. Any person who is considering undertaking this walk should do careful research and make their own assessment of the risks, dangers and possible problems involved. They should also go to "Important information" for further important information.
Make sure you have appropriate insurance.
Guided or independent?
You can do these walks independently, but you will need to be self-sufficient, so come fully prepared.
Most people form or join organised expeditions. Given the remoteness of the country and difficulty of getting supplies, many will prefer to do it this way, and travelling here with a knowledgeable guide has real advantages.
If hiring a guide locally, meet him/her and get comfortable before committing. Make sure all requirements are understood and agreed - including how you will eat as well as overnighting and, of course, remuneration!
Expedition organisers include:
- Explore! - www.explore.co.uk - reputable and experienced organisers. They do an excellent expedition that includes time in Cappadocia plus the Seven Lakes and Cimbar Canyon in the "Ala Daglar".
- Exodus - www.exodus.co.uk - well-known travel company. Do a standalone Taurus Mountains expedition.
TripAdvisor - www.tripadvisor.co.uk - as well as tens of millions of reviews, you can book your flights, accommodation and misc. travel arrangements through them.
Once you have left the villages of the foothills, camping is the only realistic option.
The guidebooks have accommodation ideas for before/after your trek.
Hostelbookers usually has a good selection of cheaper-end accommodation.
Other information and tips
Useful websites and information
There are many websites with relevant information. Here are some that we think are useful or have been recommended to us.
Other things to do in the area
Turkey has a huge variety of great walks. There is likely to be a good walk within range wherever you may be.
Visit the extraordinary churches, troglodyte cities and natural wonders of Cappadocia.
share your experiences
Add your experiences, suggestions and photos. We would be delighted to receive your writing and ideas (which will be attributed appropriately where published).
Anyone planning an expedition to this place should see further important information about this walk.
Responsible travel matters, a lot. How you travel will make a real difference - for better or worse. PLEASE consider this when making plans. Read more