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Lake Salda – Turkish Maldives

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The calling card of the Maldives is snow-white beaches and turquoise water. But not only the Maldives can boast of such splendor. In the Turkish province of Burdur, at the foot of Mount Esler, lies the stunning beauty of Lake Salda. The whitest sand and water of an unusual bright blue color have caused this lake to be called the Turkish Maldives. And although on closer inspection the sand turns out to be not sand at all, but mineral deposits, the water continues to amaze with its bright fascinating colors.

If you get to the lake in cloudy weather, it may seem gloomy and gray, but on a sunny day it will demonstrate all its splendor.

Located at an altitude of 1,193 meters above sea level, the Turkish Lake Salda stretches over an area of 45 square kilometers. It is the deepest freshwater reservoir in Turkey, and its depth reaches 185 meters. Visiting tourists can enjoy the unique beauty of wildlife here. The lake was formed on the site of a former volcanic crater. This pond with the purest clear water is considered one of the most beautiful in the world.

Salda Lake Birdhead View

On all sides, the lake is surrounded by mountain slopes and many pine trees. The coniferous aroma takes your breath away, and you want to inhale it.Along the shores of the reservoir there are reeds and other varieties of aquatic plants. The turquoise color of the water is due to a special chemical composition, there is a component in it that gives the water not only an unusual color, but also a sweet taste.

Swimming on the lake until 2020 was possible only in specially designated areas on equipped beaches. At the moment, the authorities have imposed a ban on swimming in the lake.

What to see and what to do?

On Lake Salda in Turkey, both outdoor enthusiasts and those who prefer to silently observe the beauty of wildlife will find entertainment to their taste. A bird’s-eye view of the reservoir and its surroundings opens up. And you can admire it by paragliding. 15 kilometers from the lake is the Salda Ski Center, whose staff will provide guests with a half-hour flight. Salda Ski Center offers both single and pair paragliding flights. You can explore the area by riding around the lake on a rented bicycle. Two-wheeled transport rental points are located on the shore. On the shores of the lake there are places rich in healing mud. Salda clay contains many minerals, including hydromagnesite, which have a positive effect on the skin. Once here, do not be afraid to smear yourself from head to toe with medicinal clay, let the skin be saturated with useful substances. Due to the high content of minerals, even in the heat, clay is cold enough, so for someone the process of applying it to the body may seem uncomfortable. Also interesting is the fact that this type of clay, unlike hydrogen sulfide, has no smell.

Interesting facts

In 2011, the recreation area on the banks of the Salda, which occupies about 12 hectares, was turned into a nature park. Part of the park is provided for camping, in which national camps are also located. The turquoise water of the lake is inhabited by water snakes, whose length ranges from 10 to 40 centimeters. They do not pose a threat to swimmers, but no one has managed to catch any of them yet.In fact, the shores are not covered with sand, but with mineral deposits that have a pleasant smell. If you rub the sand between your fingers, it will leave a light fragrance on the skin. Even in the heat, the sand remains cool. Not far from the lake there is a factory producing washing powder, which includes sand from the shores of Salda. The powder is able to wash off any stains due to the unique component present in it. Mineral deposits recover quickly, so the factory does not deplete the resources of the lake. The mud that covers the shores of the lake helps with joint diseases. There are 4 species of fish in the lake, and there are 110 species of birds and 301 species of plants in the forests.

What is interesting for children?

You can find a lot of interesting activities on the lake. For example, you can ride a bike around the lake, have picnics, spend the night in tents, roast marshmallows on a campfire and study a map of the starry sky. Older children can admire the lake by paragliding over its surroundings. Children will be interested to know that the water of Lake Salda contains minerals similar to those found in the Martian mountains.

While vacationing in Turkey, it is worth allocating at least one day to visit the Turkish Maldives – Lake Salda. Abandoning lazy lying on the beach, you can swim in turquoise water, smear yourself with medicinal clay, sunbathe on snow-white sand, which is chemically similar to the miners of the distant red planet Mars, live in a tent on the lake shore, inhaling the indescribable aroma of coniferous forests. Turkish residents call this place one of the most picturesque in the country, so if you get a chance, be sure to visit it with the whole family.

You can read this article in Russian language: Озеро Салда – Турецкие Мальдивы

Anna Yablochkina

Hello, I'm Anna, I live in Istanbul. I love traveling and discovering new places. I share my trips on Expat Guide Turkey.

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