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The dead village of Kayakoy, Turkey

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#1
So last year as I headed from Eastern Europe towards Asia, I spent a couple months in Turkey. The hottest months, naturally (I hate the heat yet I headed almost as South as possible without hitting a war zone... Stupid Steve). I like my military history, and found that there was a dead village on my way down the West Coast.

Kayakoy is in a central location as far as ancient history in the Mediterranean is concerned. It was Greek up until the post-WW1 war between Greece and Turkey. Just before its abandonement by the Greeks during the war it had around 2,000 inhabitants. The post-war agreement to resettle Turks living in Greece back to Turkey, and vice versa, saw everyone gone. This happened on the entire Western Coast of Turkey, where villages were suddenly left to crumble. Some strange red tape in Turkish law made it impossible for Turks to settle into these villages, so they were left to die.

I have a fascination with abandoned places, just standing in a spot and wondering how many footsteps hit this same patch of ground. What were these people of the past like, how did they live and die? Especially in a part of the world like this, where literally thousands of years of important world history took place. Even before the Crusaders marched on through, before the Romans, before the Lycians. And now this place is a crumbling hill of forgotten history, where wealthy British tourists stop by for a few pictures and a coffee on the main road before heading down the road to the next (extremely touristy) village.

Even if this place was crowded with tourists, which thankfully it wasn't at the time (Thank the recent coup attempt and terrorist attacks...), you could easily wander through any number of little alleyways and be lost in it all.

So enough talking. Here's some pictures:

The first few are old Lycian tombs cut into the cliffs above the closest city of Fethiye. Later adopted and slightly modified by AT LEAST the Romans. So fucking cool. And I mean that literally. On a 40C day with humidity, those tombs were so nice to cool off in.

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And now Kayakoy starting from the main road:

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Above is a cistern. The vertical bit being a drain from the roof, with the lower part being a dome-shaped container.

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Where you see the little flag is their fortification of sorts. The walls are bigger there, more fortified. To the right is the biggest church in the village which is being restored. I think it was used in a movie or two...

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I would have liked to sleepover in the area but I was on a bit of a time limit to hitchhike to Georgia, which was a large distance to go and I still had to see a lot of place on the way. Cappadocia, especially.

There is a trail called the Lycian way which begins near to Fethiye, with the path running right through Kayakoy... So one day i'll walk the trail and spend a night with the ghosts there.
 
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Tude

Sometimes traveler is traveling.
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#2
Dude -it's these kinds of opportunities and awesome visuals that I found STP in the first place - great pics and info Thank you!!!
 

todd

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#3
awesome pics thanks for sharing
 

Matt Derrick

StP Founder, Admin, and travel addict
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#4
Nice photo essay my friend, I've added this to our featured threads page!