Ölüdeniz is THE place to be for paragliding! It is one of the world's very best locations for paragliding, and heaps of paragliders gather here from spring to autumn to fly from Babadag mountain behind Ölüdeniz, and land directly to the beach on the carpet on the promenade! :)
You can also jump if you don't have your own parachute, just pay 70-100 euros and you can fly in tandem with a "pilot".
There are MANY agencies that organize it, the best being German run Reaction (www.reactionparagliding.com)
Another useful site to visit is www.flybabadag.com
The feeling is AMAZING!!! If you do it once, you'll end up hopelessly in love and madly desiring to do it on and on and on...
(BTW, the socks with Australian flag I'm wearing are a gift of one of my best friends, also a VTer, Helen from Sydney - hailun on VT)
Reaching Babadag take-off places is organized in sort of jeeps, they load paragliders in the back, the parachutes on the top, and often there is no space so the pilots go up on the top as well!
Then you drive for about 45 minutes approximately, through the thick pine forest and macadam road to the top. The drive is a real adventure because it's shaking and the abyss are deep, the road narrov, the drivers go real FAST, and there is dust everywhere, like in indiana Jones movies! :) But eventually you are at the top and the view is AMAZING!
As you fly, you'll be in awe, not only for the spectacular landscape and views, but for the very feeling itself, especially if your pilot (or yourself, if you fly solo!) perform spirals or any other fligh exibitions, it's better than a rollercoaster!
There are 3 take-off places at babadag mountain, the best and most advanced is 1960m, and it requires an experienced pilot because the "runaway" (take off slope) is quite short. But nonetheless, there are heaps of pilots easily taking off from there. Some people do experience problems and take off only after 2nd or 3rd attempt, but most of the time it's instant.
There is a small bar, toilette and ambulance at the top.
If you fly in tandem, most probably you'll land on the beach, but solo pilots land exactly on the carpet on the pedestrian area. Landing is just a soft touch, like ballerina :)), only a few steps! You'll be asked to either lift your feet and then the pilot does all the job, or you'll touch the ground together. It's a very light touchdown!
Maybe it's not the Red Sea, but there are still wonderful spots for scuba diving. Old ship wrecks (especially in the Blue Lagoon), there is plenty of fish and underwater creatures and plants... Above all, the water is crystal clear, and thus snorkeling is fantastic as well!
There are several places to do the rafting in the area, all within 50km. Easy, kid's game is Saklikent - you go down with a rubber "wheel" for about 20 min after which they pick you up with a jeep and return you to Saklikent.
Then, there is Dalyan river, and the most advanced and serious - Dalaman river rafting, for experienced rafters.
This is the view of the place where rafting begins at Saklikent.
The seaside village of Olu Deniz near Fethiye is surrounded on three sides by impressive mountains and is fast becoming the place to be in Turkey for serious Para-gliders.
Baba Dag(Mountain) at Oludeniz offers three takeoff sites at 1700, 1800 and 1900 meters, facing SW , E and NE / SE respectively, which enable takeoffs with any wind direction. Imagine launching off majestic Babadag , flying with a bird's eye view of the most picturesque bay in Turkey -the Oludeniz Beach and Blue Lagoon.
Currently there are many private companies who are arranging guided flights and giving lessons. You only need to choose to fly..
Equipment: Paraglider is a large canopy 35/40 feet wide, which is made up of cell segments, open at the leading edge to allow air to inflate the canopy.
The best place for paragliding in Turkey, so if you have enough courage, you have to try at least once.You are taking of top of Babadag ( app. 2000m ) and you are facing up with an amazing scene as attached
Many of tour companies in Oludeniz beach are organizing this amazing event, the prices are 80-100 €.
Equipment: Tour operators on Oludeniz beach are organizing everything, just you need a good sport shoe.
Well, it's the thing that everybody who comes to Olu Deniz does. Everybody who wants to run off a mountain and fly through the air, that is. There are many companies to chose from - I flew with Focus, based mainly on watching pilots coming in to land. It was a very enjoyable experience, though I think my flight was a wee bit shorter than some peoples. I went up on the 1100 trip: this time and 1330 are recommended for the best thermals. Trips are generally available from around 0830 to 1700. This slot was actually full on the day I went (around 10 people) - I got the last reservation two days ahead, so booking at least a bit in advance is recommended.
Cost was 110 YTL (around £45) in June 2008, which I think is around the lower end of the price range. The truck ride up is an experience in itself. As this was the busy time and there were several companies flying, there was a bit of waiting around for set up and take off. All in, the trip, from the truck setting off to desuiting after landing took around 1hr 50 mins. The pilot videoed parts of the flight and some pre/post flight stuff. The video is played back to you after landing - it was good to see, but for me not worth the £20 asked. (Actually, I liked the video of the person next to me at playback better - though maybe as it did have a cute Polish girl in it ;-)).
Pictures in this set are all related to the actual paragliding, I will post aerial views in another tip.
I should point out this is tandem paragliding - safety is paramount. Olu Deniz is of course a fantastic spot for experienced solo pilots, and in fact a couple took a lift up in our truck.
Equipment: Sensible clothing for hot weather is required (a flightsuit and helmet are supplied, and decent trainers for the take off run.
Some views from during my paragliding flight.
As a passenger, you only really need to hold on to anything during take off or landing. You are securely strapped in to a harness, which in turn is secured onto the pilots harness. So in flight, there is plenty of opportunity to take pictures and videos. Whilst I only had a little digital point-and-shoot, some other fliers had big SLRs with large telephoto lenses on.
In fact, another agency suggested you could drink a beer, or eat a burger, in flight. I passed on that.
I took my PADI Rescue diver course here and had great fun during it and at night.
Catch the boat from near the Blue/green culture centre along the quayside.
I dived with these guys for 5 years and always enjoyed it,although the staff i was diving with are now gone to other companies.
Scuba diving,Gungor was my first ever diving instructor and gave me a great start in my diving life.
Sorry map doesn't come up too great so if you would like the full version,e-mail me and i'll send the full 1.