Ortaca is one of the southern most towns of the district of Muðla, which is surrounded by Dalaman from the East, Akdeniz from the South and Köyceğiz from the North – Northwest.

 

The area is nestled within the mountainous region known as the Gökbel- Dereköy and Sarıgerme triangle, providing the area with a 360 degree mountain panorama.

Dalyan and its Iztuzu Beach, Sarıgerme beach, Aşı Bay and Bakardi Bay located to the right of Sarıgerme are some of the most frequented areas by tourists. The region not only boasts eight months of glorious sunshine, but its history, nature and panoramic views are breathtaking, fundamentally –  Iztuzu and Sarigerme beaches are two of the most valuable beaches in the world, historic towns, ancient ruins, the 3000 year old rock tombs of the kings, the Dalaman River, the natural border of Mediterranean and Aegean regions, Dalyan’s peerless delta with its reed beds home to many rare bird species some indigenous to the area, the mud bath and hot springs once often frequented by Cleopatra, and some of the holiday villages in Sarıgerme offering very good value.

 

The main economy in this region is produced through farming and agriculture with Ortaca and the surrounding villages providing vast quantities of cotton, wheat, oranges, lemons, mandarins and watermelon to name just a few.

Fishing in Dalyan and its surroundings is another important factor for this areas economy, but is also a lifestyle and an important part of the Turkish culture. In addition, beekeeping and the production of local honey provides a large boost to the Turkish economy as the honey is exported worldwide. The growing of vegetables, such as tomatoes in the greenhouses also add to the Turkish economy.

 

For those that love nature and wildlife, Köyceğiz Lake to the northwest of Ortaca and Dalyan’s Delta with its reed beds home to many bird species, along with the rare and endangered Caretta Caretta Turtles is worth a visit. Caretta Caretta turtles are protected by Dalyan’s people, and International wildlife preservation agencies. Ortaca, located in between two popular tourist centers Marmaris and Fethiye, is more of a commercial town rather than a typical tourist attraction.

 

Ortaca’s convenient location is ideal for exploring the surrounding areas, with so much to see and do – outdoor sports have increased in popularity through recent years. The Dalaman River offers a host of water sports such as: canoeing, rafting and parasailing. Where as, the mountainous regions of the Gökbel- Dereköy-Sarıgerme triangle is great for trekking, bike tours and jeep safari. The breathtaking views from Radar hill on Gökbel Mountain, is definitely worth a visit. For those that wish to escape the ‘rat race’ and pollution of big cities, Ortaca and its surrounding areas offers a calm relaxing atmosphere, in the heart of nature with many tourists returning year after year.

Akıncı Village

Just 5km from Ortaca, and with a population of just 650 is the village of Akinci. To reach the village turn down the old Sarıgerme road and cross over the Ortaca- Dalaman highway, the first village you come across is Akıncı. Dalaman River located at the East of the village is the border between Ortaca and Dalaman. Nestled in two hectares of land is the Şadırvan restaurant, where you can experience cuisine from all the regions.

Akıncı’s main economical activity is agriculture. Villagers have provided the cotton for textile industries for many years, however during the course of time, citrus fruits, water melon and pomegranate production have increased.

Dereköy

Located just 6km from Ortaca and with a population of just 413 you will find the old village of Dereköy, settlement is mostly in the west of the village, in the foot of Pıynarcık and Boynuzcuk mountains. Village people have maintained century old traditions, such as the wedding ceremony. The family of the bride, pass to her an elaborately carved wooden chest, known as the ‘bride’s chest’, inside will contain her dowry. Red bridal veils are also given to those brides who are virgins, which is a huge status symbol for the family. Horse racing is also a popular tradition in the village. Each home have open fires where food is cooked, they also burn “Buhur” on the fires, a form of incense obtained from the bark of certain trees that fill the rooms with a wonderful aroma. Corn is the most sown product. However, sesame, cotton and wheat, are also produced. Beekeeping is one of the village’s oldest traditions.

Ekşiliyurt

Eksiliyurt located 5km from Ortaca is the first village on the Ortaca-Dalyan highway, with a Population of 2109.  It is one of the largest citrus producing villages in the vicinity. The citrus gardens can be viewed on either side of the road, and when in flower the air is filled with a wonderful perfumed aroma. Ekşiliyurt’s name was created by the first settlers in the village “ekşi” meaning ‘bitter-orange’. In addition are vast amounts of greenhouses where vegetables and other fruits are grown for export.

 

Eskiköy

Eskikoy located 13km from Ortaca with a population of 1400. When you come towards Dalyan from Ortaca, turn right before entering Dalyan – signposted for Köyceğiz. The first village you approach is Eskiköy. Sığla trees indigenous to the area can be seen on either side of the road. Eskikoy, being just a few kilometers from Dalyan, (one of the world’s most famous tourist spots) is often chosen by tourists for their vacation.  This is becoming increasingly popular for German and English families who live in Eskiköy throughout the year. The main economical activities are agriculture, livestock breeding and greenhouses.

Fevziye

Fevziye is located 12km form Ortaca, with a population of 793 and is the third village you will come across when you turn left on the old Sarıgerme road from the Dalaman- Ortaca highway. Almost all the mountains surrounding the village are laden with olive trees, Fevziye’s most important economical activity is not just the growing of olives but the process of pressing and making olive oil. Many neighbouring villages will bring their olive crops to Fevziye for pressing. Fevziye is a very close knit, family orientated community keen to protect their culture and values in the hope those future generations will maintain the old traditions.  To protect the old culture the villagers produce many musical and theatre activities.

Gökbel

Gokbel located 18km from Ortaca, and with a population of 497 is nestled on a mountainside with spectacular views of the famous Iztuzu beach. The road to the village is tree lined with Oleanders, their abundance of pink and white flowers is a spectacular sight. On the right side of the road is Sülüngür Lake, where many people stop to watch the sunset. As you ascend the mountain, you capture the natural beauty of thriving forest land; it is also worthwhile making a stop at one of the ‘Gozleme’ and take time to experience the delicious Turkish pancakes en-route. The village’s main economy is derived from tourism, agriculture and livestock breeding. In addition, garden sage, thyme and bay-leaf found growing wild is picked by the locals and sold.

Gölbaşı

Gölbaşı village is located 3 km from Ortaca, with a population of 260. According to local sayings Gölbaşı took its name from the lake at Kocabel. This lake dried up during the course of time and in the memory of this ‘Golbasi’ meaning ‘dry lake’ was named. The village’s main economy is derived from citrus fruit, greenhouses, cotton and sesame production. In addition, livestock breeding was developed due to most of the land being forestry and not enough land for sowing. Gölbaşı Social Solidarity and Protecting Environment Society is interested in the arts, with there own theatre group.

 

 

Güzelyurt

Güzelyurt is located 12km from Ortaca, with a population of 1561 and is one of the biggest villages in the Ortaca district. The village’s old name was Kizilyurt but was changed to Güzelyurt in 1980 for reasons unknown. You can reach the village buy minibus from Ortaca. Güzelyurt village is located over the old Sarigerme road before Fevziye and after Akincilar. Güzelyurt is a large agricultural village where citrus fruits, cotton and a host of other fruit and vegetables are produced either in the open air or in one of the numerous greenhouses. Beekeeping is also an old tradition.

Karadonlar

Karadonlar village is one of the important historical places of the Ortaca district. Where Rock tombs similar to those in Dalyan border the village. It is possible to see the Kayra ruins in Topan Mountain and Deliklitaş. With a Population of just 350 the Villagers main incomes are derived from agriculture. Forest products, thyme and garden sage also contribute to the economy.

 

Kemaliye

Kemaliye located 6km from Ortaca and with a population of 857 is the next village after Ekşiliyurt on the Dalyan-Ortaca road. The village was named Kemaliye after its attachments to Mustafa Kemal Atatürk at Independent War. When you enter the village you’ll notice that people produce their own vegetables and fruit in their gardens.

Mergenli

Mergenli located 17 km from Ortaca with a population of 737 became popular due to its border with Aşı Bay. Mergenli is one of the oldest villages of the region. As you enter the village there is a mosque that was built in 1702. The village also has a wealth of history. In a region called old Mergenli there are rock tombs, which have unfortunately been destroyed by treasure seekers.

 

Okçular

The last village over the Ortaca-Dalyan road, located 8 km from Ortaca with a population of 1900. As you enter the village fields of citrus fruits, orange, lemon and mandarin greet you on either side of the road. Within the village sits an old mansion, the date of construction is unknown, but is said to have been built by a person named Çakırcalı Mehmet Efe. Tourists choose to vacate in this village as it is so close to Dalyan. Many luxury villas have been constructed in this area over recent years, and will continue to be a popular place for foreigners to purchase. Storks are other frequent visitors to the village where they will build their nests in the eucalyptus and pine trees.