I liked the Phrygian Valley and Emre Lake, which I had the opportunity to visit a short time ago, that I wanted to share these beautiful places with you, my dear readers.
The Phrygian Valley was declared as a Nature Park by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry in 2017 . This place is like a secret paradise that not many people know about for now.
As you pass through the winding roads of the Phrygian Valley, you feel as if you have gone back thousands of years.
The fairy chimney-like formations and untouched nature all over the valley give you no clue as to when you are. In this way, you feel as if you have entered a time machine and embarked on a journey back to the old years. Emre Lake, which you will reach at the end of this magical road, welcomes you with its calm waters surrounded by greenery.
Cem Yılmaz also shot the film Arog in the Phrygian Valley to create the feeling of the Stone Age. In front of the part where the caves are, you can take a memory photo with the sign that says “AROG – Population: 100” .
Where is the Phrygian Valley and Emre Lake?
The Phrygian Valley, whose history dates back to 3000 years ago, is located in the mountainous region in the triangle of Afyonkarahisar , Kütahya and Eskişehir .
The Phrygian Valley is also known as the “City of Philosophers” because it is thought that the Greek philosopher Epictetus was born in this region.
Emre Lake, on the other hand, is located between Döğer Town and Bayramaliler Village of İhsaniye district , 50 kilometers from Afyon city center . The area of the lake narrows or expands depending on the precipitation periods.
When and How to Go to Phrygian Valley and Emre Lake?
I think the best time to visit Phrygian Valley and Emre Lake is in spring and autumn . You can see the birds that come to visit the lake during these seasons, and you can have a pleasant time without being too hot or cold.
The lake, which has a surface area of 5 square kilometers and a depth of 3 meters , is 290 kilometers from Ankara, 352 kilometers from Izmir and 388 kilometers from Istanbul .
The best way to reach here is to come with your own vehicle. I reached this natural wonder place with a car journey that took about 3 hours from Ankara. It was a very nice day trip for me.
While driving through the valley, you feel like you are in one of the famous director Nuri Bilge Ceylan ‘s movies.
Not only the history, but also the natural life in the villages affects people a lot. Herds of cows , goats and geese accompany you along the way . There was also a colt that was sweet or sweet.
Places to Visit in Phrygian Valley and Emre Lake
Phrygian Valley has many historical rock monuments and settlements. Apart from these, there are burial chambers and churches belonging to the Roman and Byzantine periods in the region .
Be sure to watch the magnificent view of Emre Lake, one of the Phrygian Rock Monuments .
You can also visit the Yunus Emre Lodge next to these monuments . The lodge, which is an Ottoman work from the end of the 18th century, has a rectangular prism structure covered with cut stone.
B.C. 8-7. There are majestic lions standing up on both sides of the doorway on the front face of the Aslantaş Rock Tomb , which dates back to the 16th century , with a baby lion under their feet .
A relief resembling the tree of life , which looks like a winged sunbird, is made on the door .
The burial chamber, on the other hand, has a light vaulted ceiling and a small cell on the left side with a sofa (kline) to lay the dead .
Yılantaş, located to the west of Aslantaş, is unfortunately in a fragmented state. Only the head and a foot relief of the triangular ceiling beams of the monument and the lion relief on the outside can be seen. The Medusa-headed snake relief on the door and the two warriors attacking the snake with their spears on both sides cannot be seen today because they are under the inverted rock. The palm-leaved column capital found in the kline inside Yılantaş dates back to BC. It is thought to have been built in the 7th century .
The King’s Road (Ancient Road) , located on the left side of the road on the way to Emre Lake, is one of the most important trade routes of the Phrygians. The ruts of the horse carriages on the road take people back thousands of years.
Make sure to take a photo with the Fairy Chimneys , which you can see at any time as you wander around and look like they came out of the land of fairy tales . Üçlerkayası , Ayazin Church , Ayazin Metropolis , Göynüş Valley , Memeç Rocks , Kapıkaya 1 and 2 are other historical ruins you can see in the Phrygian Valley.
AROG Filming Area is also a nice place to stop by while visiting the valley and remind you of the scenes of the movie.
What Can We Do in Phrygian Valley and Emre Lake?
My favorite activity is to take a nice stroll on Emre Lake with the Phrygian boat named “King Midas” . This impressive boat is based on Phrygian artifacts and motifs. This time , you feel like you are traveling in time with a boat . While you are boating around the lake, you have the chance to take a closer look at the historical ruins in the Phrygian Valley.
Since the Phrygian Valley covers a large area, you can rent a bicycle or ATV motorcycle if you want to tour all around. You can visit fairy chimneys , carved rock tombs and monumental monuments formed by the effect of rain and wind in this beautiful place, which has a history of 3 thousand years .
Phrygian Valley is preferred by many people for trekking . The Phrygian Way, which stretches to four cities, is the 3rd longest hiking trail in our country with a length of 506 kilometers. Don’t be intimidated by the length of the road, of course you don’t have to walk it all.
If you like fishing, Lake Emre is a very suitable place for you. The grassy bottom of the lake, which is visited by freshwater fish hunters, has made this place suitable for fish to live. You can catch your fishing rod and hunt by breathing this historical atmosphere.
What to Eat in Phrygian Valley and Emre Lake?
The Phrygian Valley is a very well preserved place, as I have told you before. For this reason, there are not many eating and drinking options.
Your first alternative is to bring your food and drinks with you, as I did. The other option is to take advantage of the small restaurants or grocery stores in the surrounding area . If you dare to go a little further , I suggest you try the delicacies in Afyon .
Can We Stay in Phrygian Valley and Emre Lake?
Although I made a day trip, I researched accommodation opportunities for you.
If you are interested in camping, you can stay with your tent at Şefika Teyze’s Place in İhsaniye . For those who prefer a more comfortable accommodation , I can recommend Midas Han on Çukurca Village Road . If you want to stay in a spa hotel while you are here, you can take a look at the thermal hotels in Gazlıgöl.