Çetin Altan’s Köyceğiz

Writer and journalist Çetin Altan compares his beloved Köyceğiz in Muğla province to a pastoral symphony, a land he dubs ‘a paradise where the Aegean and the Mediterranean meet’.

“Köyceğiz is a really great place!” you say. Why?
Köyceğiz has a lot to say to those who know not only how to look but how to see. In the endlessly reflecting mirrors of its quiet, unperturbed nature, and in its own mysterious depths where man’s physical existence dissolves away.

How do you picture Köyceğiz in your mind’s eye?
Köyceğiz boasts patches of civilization going back three thousand years from the Mediterranean to the Aegean, and the shores of one of the most beautiful lakes in the world with a connection to the sea. Not to mention its serene forests, and its bright-eyed lemon orchards... Köyceğiz is like a Swiss town untouched by a hairdresser’s hand. You will lose yourself in contemplation of the royal tombs as you navigate through the fishing weirs.

What does winter in Köyceğiz mean to you?
Köyceğiz in winter is a rare treat with its citrus groves, its deserted roads, its solitary lakes and coves. With the misty peaks on its horizon, its eucalyptuses and its large stands of frankincense and myrrh trees (Liquidambar orientalis), Lake Köyceğiz is like a winter symphony deep in sleep.

What would you recommend to people going to Köyceğiz?
Go to Köyceğiz not just to have a quick look around and leave, but with a concern to preserve its beauty for future generations. Everyone needs to know and understand the devastation that will be caused by the hydroelectric plant to be built on the Yuvarlakçay, a rushing stream that feeds Lake Köyceğiz and boasts dozens of species of plants that grow only here in the whole world.