Saturday, 02 December 2023
Konya’s Marvelous Natural Wonders to Visit

Konya’s Marvelous Natural Wonders to Visit

  • Salt Lake

Located at the intersection of Ankara, Konya, and Aksaray provinces in Turkey’s Central Anatolia Region, Salt Lake is a salty lake. It provides 40% of Turkey’s salt needs. The formation of salt in Salt Lake occurs through the infiltration of meteorological waters into the underground, dissolving pre-existing salt domes and bringing them to the surface along tectonic faults.

Being the second largest lake in Turkey in terms of surface area, Salt Lake is situated in a vast tectonic basin buried among the surrounding plateaus. This basin was formed through Neogene tectonic movements. The depression where Salt Lake lies is surrounded by faults from the east, west, and south. During the Quaternary period, the lake’s surface area decreased due to less rainfall. Over time, the lake further shrank to its current state.

  • Karapınar Desert

Located in Konya, the Karapınar Çölü (Karapınar Desert) attracts a lot of attention as a natural wonder. It has a red appearance and a soft texture, creating a true desert landscape. The formation of this desert is believed to be the result of volcanic formations. It serves as a popular area for activities like camel riding, attracting visitors regularly.

Karapınar Desert is located within the borders of Konya’s Karapınar district. Its name comes from the fact that it is found in this district. The area is covered with red dunes, covering hectares of land. It is known as the only desert within Turkey’s borders and is of volcanic origin.

  • Akşehir Lake

Located in a depression between the Sultan and Emir mountains, Akşehir Lake is a lake in the Akşehir district. Administratively, it is within the boundaries of Konya and Afyonkarahisar provinces.

Since it is in a closed basin, it does not have an outflow to the outside. However, its waters are not very salty due to the abundance of freshwater sources mixing with the lake’s shores. The salinity becomes more pronounced in the middle and northeastern parts.

  • Obruk Plateau

Located along the Ereğli line in Konya, the Obruk Plateau stretches all the way to Salt Lake. The sinkholes are divided into dry and wet types. The altitude of Obruk Plateau is around 1000-1050 meters, and it contains the Obruk Lake. During your Konya vacation, Obruk Plateau is a fascinating region to explore, and you can also discover nearby plateaus and witness the beauty of this city up close. Meram Vineyards, Fasıllar Monument, İnce Minare Madrasah, Mevlana Tomb, Meke Lake, and Karapınar Desert are among the most beautiful places worth seeing in the city.

  • Suğla Lake

Located in the southwestern part of Konya province in Turkey, Suğla Lake is a karstic lake. During rainy years, its area expands significantly, while in dry years, the lake dries up, revealing an alluvial lakebed that becomes a good agricultural area. Its water is freshwater.

  • Meke Lake

Located in Karapınar district of Konya, Meke Lake is a lake formed by the filling of a volcanic cave with water. It is known for its small islands in the middle. Meke Lake is situated 2 km inland from the junction on the Karapınar-Ereğli road in the Karapınar Plain. The total length of the lake and the primary maar is 800 meters, and its width is 500 meters. The lake is 12 meters deep and is named after the migratory meke birds living in the area.

This maar, formed by a volcanic explosion about 4-5 million years ago during the Pleistocene era, gradually filled with water and later, around 9,000 years ago, a second volcanic explosion gave rise to a volcanic cone in the middle of the lake.

  • Beyşehir Lake

Located in the Lakes Region, within the borders of Konya and Isparta provinces, Beyşehir Lake is Turkey’s third-largest and the largest freshwater lake. It is surrounded by the Toros Mountains to the west and south, the volcanic Erenler Mountain to the east, and the Sultan Mountains and Mount Anamas to the northwest and southeast.

  • Meyil Lake

A karstic structure in Konya, Meyil Sinkhole Lake turns pink due to the decrease in water levels and the presence of artemia salina bacteria in the water. The Meyil Sinkhole is located within the boundaries of Karapınar province in Konya.

  • Kilistra Ancient City

Located 45 kilometers southwest of Konya, within the Hatunsaray (Lystra) district of the Meram province, Kilistra Ancient City stands out as an archaeological site. It had intense settlements during the Hellenistic and Roman periods and quickly grew during the Early Christian period, acquiring a Cappadocia-like architectural character.

Kilistra, situated on the historical King’s Road (Via Sebaste), holds strategic importance and is one of the five centers where the Roman Empire established military colonies on the southern frontiers.

  • İvriz Rock Monument

Located 12 km from Ereğli district of Konya, at the source of İvriz Water, İvriz Rock Monument is a work of the Late Hittite period. It is the world’s first written agricultural monument and the world’s first relief rock monument. Its significance arises from this feature. It is considered one of the most important art works of the Late Hittite period with Aramean influences.

  • Tınaztepe Caves

Located in Seydişehir, Konya, Tınaztepe Mağaraları (Tınaztepe Caves) is the third-largest cave in the world and the largest one in Turkey. It has a total length of 22 km, and 1580 meters of it are open for exploration. Except for a 64-meter descent at the end, the cave is mostly horizontal. It has been serving as Cave Rest Facilities since 2004.

Especially during the spring months, the waters fed by snow and rain create fascinating sights of waterfalls and plunge pools before reaching the lowermost part of the cave. Tınaztepe Caves, one of the places to visit in Konya, is estimated to have formed over an extended period of approximately 230 million years. Inside the cave, there are also areas where the height difference between the floor and the ceiling reaches 65 meters. It is Turkey’s longest cave.

  • Güvercinlik Cave

Situated in Güneysınır district, Güvercinlik Cave is easily accessible and constantly visited by tourists due to its interesting sections and convenient location. The cave is located 130 meters below ground and consists of two parts: vertical and salon. The salon part is 346 meters long. The cave features stalactites, stalagmites, cave milk formations, and curtains. After visiting Güvercinlik Cave, you can explore Nasreddin Hodja Mausoleum, the Karatay Madrasah with Seljuk architectural features, and the Beyşehir Lake National Park filled with natural beauty.

  • Sille District

Many regions of Turkey draw attention with their historical beauties. Among the places to be visited in every season and region, Sille District in Konya boasts a history of 5,000 years. Sille, once an important neighborhood where different cultures coexisted in Konya’s Selçuklu district, captivates tourists with its historical texture.

Having been inhabited since the Phrygian period and serving as a significant settlement area since the Byzantine era, Sille has been one of the early centers of Early Christianity and an important stop on the pilgrimage route between Istanbul and Jerusalem.

Today, it is a neighborhood affiliated with the Selçuklu district and has been declared an “urban conservation area” by the Konya Cultural Assets Protection Board.