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TREKKING OR PICNIC, WHICH ONE WOULD YOU LIKE? : YUVACIK

You can have a cup of tea in the coffe shop which is placed in the square. Yuvacık and the villages around Yuvacık was used to be a host for Armenians, however during the last years of Ottoman Empires, the immigrations from Black Sea and Caucasus have made the village to meet with the Turkish population. Most of the people of 22.000 living in the village have the roots from Rize. The village is surrounded by mountains, rivers, forests and highlands. There are lots to see in Yuvacık where the nature has become generous. If you like go for a trekking to Menekşe Highlands or have a cup of tea across the Yuvacık Dam. You can also eat fish which are located in the stream beds listening to the voices of the river at the same time.  To have a look to the dam and view from far away, you’d better go to the highlands of Ercuva and Servetiye. 

The place which is preferred mostly for daily trips due to the location and easy transportation is also amongst the favorite routes of trekkers. Trekking tracks takes place around the village of Aytepe which is one hour distance from Yuvacık. Visitors who are mainly coming from Istanbul for sports walking through the valleys where Soğukdere and Sıcakdere meets each other and they can reach to Menekşe Highland and Beşkayalar Saklıcennet Park. There are two caves in the park one of them has a waterfall and the other has a lake inside. It is possible to reach the trekking areas also by vehicles.

Don’t mind the weather forecast, wear thick… 

In the warm and humid forests, summers are mostly warm and slightly rainy. You should take some thick clothes with you even though. Don’t forget to taste strawberries which are grown in the region. In the facilities which are located by the end of Yuvacık Dam, trout is grown four seasons. In the tables which are placed in stream bed, the trouts are served in tile. It is also possible the traditional food of Black Sea, mıhlama.

If you prefer to go higher for a picnic, we recommend Çamlıktepe where you can have a look at Yuvacık and İzmit from a bird’s eyes. 

Without any doubt, one of the most important points of Yuvacık is Yuvacık Dam. Before the construction of the dam there used to be fish farms and they used to take attraction. Even after the construction of the Dam, it still has a view which worths to see.

 KAZANDERE

Kazandere, as it can be understood from its name, is a river which was formed as a result of the waterfalls. The trekking track mostly consists of passing through water and by swimming small lakes, by climbing the rock and by sliding from waterfalls. It is a perfect activity for a hot day. You should have a swimming suit with you and also water repellent Tshirt and in case it gets cooler a thin jacket or raincoat. (Don’t bring any cotton clothes with you!). Also it is recommended that you have a water repellent boot and top socks. For the ones who can’ swim, life vest is a must. If possible also take a helmet, breeches and armrest. You can have a basic bagpack to carry water, snacks and raincoat. Bagpacks with thick fabric may cause you trouble, you should avoid having such a bagpack. You can’t carry anything in your hands, so be prepared. Bring some snacks with you to have them during your breaks and place them in waterproof storagebox or bags. And you had better bring an extra cloth that you can leave in your car.

 

MENEKŞE HIGHLAND

Menekşe Highland which is located in Kocaeli’s Yuvacık area, takes the attraction of visitor with its nature full of green. The visitors who come to espace from the crowd of cities are witnessing the beauty of Menekşe highland. Menekşe Highland is favorable for nature sports. So that it is mostly visited by nature lovers.  You can go for a trekking or you can explore the area by a bicycle. You can also join the trekkings which are organized by the nature clubs taking place in Yuvacık. The amazing nature will offer you different views.

The highland is 135 km away from Istanbul. Başiskele is 15 km and 30 km from İzmit.

BEŞKAYALAR NATURAL PARK

Beşkayalar Natural Park, which takes place in Kocaeli Yuvacık, is one of the richest natural parks in Turkey in terms of fauna and flora.

Beşkayalar Natural Park which spreads in an area of 1600 hectare is 26 kms away from İzmit. There are tracks available for trekking. At the same time there are two caves here, one of them with a waterfall and the other with a lake inside. 

You can enjoy the beauty of the nature in Beşkayalar Natural Park and you can eternalize the moments of beauties. You can visit Beşkayalar Natural Park daily or you can camp and stay a few days. Don’t forget to visit Kuzu Highland and Tahtalı Lake in Kocaeli.

AYTEPE

Aytepe, which is found to be in within the borders of Kocaeli is a hill which could also be understood from its name. Aytepe could be reach through Izmit-Kullar. The way of Kullar takes you to Yuvacık village. Before starting your trekking you can do your shopping in this village which lays out the skirts of Yuvacık Dam. You can also visit the bazaar and buy fresh fruits and vegetables for a fair price. After passing the village you can see signs that directs you to the Yuvacık Dam. After a drive of 20 minutes through the narrow paths, you will have reached Yuvacık Dam.  While on your way to Servetiye village which takes approximately half an hour, you can watch the lake view throughout the journey. You will also see highland houses in Servetiye which is special for Black Sea.

İNÖNÜ HIGHLAND

İnönü Highland is the most beautiful and wide highlands of our area. Even though it is within the borders of PAmukova, it is just next to the Kocaeli province border. From Yuvacık village to Tepecik village and from there it is possible to reach İnönü Highland. It is such a long way however you will see that it definitely worths it.  The highland takes its name from a cave which is on the western edge. The highland is being used by Katırözü and Hüseyinli villages and it is surrounded by abies forests. Even in summer, its water is cool and nice.  One branch of Serindere comes from this highland. The finish point of trekking track is Tepecik village. If desired, the route could be extended in this nature trekking. It is joyful to go for a trekking in spring and summer. However, due to the high volume of snow to the region in winter, it is quite hard and risky It has the best nature and plains for the ones who would like to do camping.

HOW TO GET ?

You should take the way to Bursa Gölcük direction taking the east exit of TEM highway which is called Kandıra.  After a 5 km drive, you will reach the roundabout of Yuvacık. After another drive of 5 km you will reach Yuvacık. If you like to come from Bursa, it is possible to reach the same roundabout 16 km after Gölcük. The ones coming from Istanbul can take the old E5 highway. You will take the direction of Gölcük and after 5 km of drive you will reach the same roundabout.  For those who wouldn’t prefer automobile can come to Izmit by bus and getting of the bus either at Halkevi or Vilayet stop and they can take the shuttles of Yuvacık.

Taken from www.dogumarmaraturizm.com web site’s article dated 2nd April 2014 …