Butterfly Valley is one of the most worth seeing places in Turkey. This unique valley on the Southwest Mediterranean Coast of Turkey opens onto a cove near Fethiye. The valley lies in the foothills of the 2000 metre high Mount Babadağ and runs between soaring rock walls.
HOW TO GO TO THERE: Most people make day trips to the valley by boat from the ÖLÜDENIZ LAGOON (Dead Sea lagoon), On such a trip of 30 minutes, the boats usually stop off on the way at the Blue Cave, and if the captain of the boat chooses to stay here long enough for a swim, the unparalleled opportunity of swimming into the cave should not be missed. An alternative way to arrive is by hang-glider off Babadağ.: The deep steep-sided valley has an area of approximately ten hectares where one can find almost all butterfly and moth species of the Mediterranean coastal region. That is exactly the reason why this paradise is considered to be an open-air natural history museum.
OVERNIGHT STAYING: Thanks to the legal authorities, building development is prohibited in the valley, but it is possible to stay overnight in shelters covered by branches and leaves, platforms in the trees as well as in tents brought along. A most spectacular view of shining stars is very rewarding for those sitting by a camp fire, in the evenings.
OPEN-AIR NATURAL MUSEUM: Over recent years many people have come to Butterfly Valley not just as day trippers from the lagoon, but to stay and enjoy its scenery and wildlife. Among them are naturalists doing research and young visitors and students who come here for alternative holidays.The name of the valley originates from the name of the leopard butterfly (Euplagia quadripunctaria), one of the most beautiful members of the Arctiidae family. One can see hundreds of those butterflies between June and October in this part of the world due to the humid microclimate created by waterfalls in the valley.
Butterfly Valleys is a good proof that tourism can survive and grow without any modern conveniences such as electricity, telephones, television, buildings or roads. After having experienced this valley most people do think unspoiled nature alone is what it takes to be drawn to this magnificient spot.
Detailed Info About the Valley
For nine or ten months from late winter onwards it is possible to follow the full life cycle of the butterflies of the valley. Here naturalists have identified around 35 butterfly and 40 moth species, the latter including some of the Mediterranean regions most strikingly patterned species, Sphingidae.
There are two paths through the valley, one leading to the waterfalls and the other to the village of Faralya. The first path leads you past many different plants, flowers and trees, and the fragrance of thyme and other aromatic plants saturates the air. As you walk deeper into the valley the rock walls close in. If you are lucky you will come across flocks of butterflies which scatter at your approach. The valley comes to a dead-end at high sheer cliffs, down which two waterfalls cascade to the ground. You can shower under the falls. The second path leading to the village is so extremely steep that as a safety measure ropes have been left at a couple of critical points.