In the late eighties, June Haimoff and TV naturalist and world famous environmentalist Professor Sir David Bellamy who, in the 80's supported June in her fight to keep this beach free of development and preserve the nesting grounds. Kaptan June and David Bellamy led a world-wide campaign to halt proposed development on Dalyan's pristine İztuzu Beach, effectively protecting the loggerhead turtles, who come to nest there each year. The whole Dalyan delta was then turned into a wildlife sanctuary to preserve its unique flora, fauna and natural beauty. Dalyan has it all; an outstanding beach, fascinating wildlife, strong local traditions, the inspiring remains of an ancient city, fantastic outdoor activities and a bustling town with plenty of bars, restaurants and nightlife.
A new Turtle Centre has been established on Iztuzu Beach, for the rescue, monitoring and research of the endangered sea turtles. The main part consists of an open sided but roofed area with large, round, moulded fibreglass holding tanks big enough to contain and medically treat, a fully grown injured turtle. The project is under the management of Pamukkele University with funding from various sources including Dalyan municipality.
June Haimoff’s Barak (beach hut), after languishing in her Dalyan garden for many years, has been returned to the beach and reconstructed adjacent to the new site and will act as a turtle visitor information centre and museum.
June has lived in Dalyan since 1984, and has devoted those years to the conservation of Iztuzu beach and the sea turtles and nesting sites. Her long held ambition to create a ‘Foundation’ for the future welfare of beach & turltles is well under way. To Turkish Gov require a guarantee equvilant to £30.000. We are pleased to say thanks to the generous benifactors half of this sum has already been donated.
A Gala Evening in aid of the Dalyan Sea Turtle Foundation (Iztuzu Beach winner of the European Open Green Space Award 2008) was held on Saturday 10th April to raise funds towards the establishment of the June Haimoff Sea Turtle Foundation. The Foundation will be an enduring facility for raising revenue to enable educational opportunities for Turkish young people to attend University and study Environmental Sciences as well as raising funds for other environmental purposes. It will be overseen by the Pamukkale University with June being the Patron.
If you would like to be involved or contribute by way a Donations towards this worthwhile projectbe this can bedone by either clicking on the secure link on each page or by contacting Susan Taylor at: [email protected]
Traveling by boat is the best way to the reach many attractions around Dalyan, including the world famous local Sultaniye Mudbaths, where you can enjoy being caked in sulphurous mud, which locals claim leaves you looking ten years younger! Drifting downstream towards the Mediterranean, you pass the amazing Lycian rock tombs which loom high above the river right opposite the town. Marsh frogs croak in the rushes, stripe-necked terrapins and little freshwater turtles dart in and out of the water and, if you are quick, you may catch the dazzling turquoise and gold arc of a kingfisher in flight or spot a golden eagle high in the mountains.
Further down river towards the “dalyans” which are fish hatcheries in Turkish – you can be dropped off at the ruins of the ancient city port of KAUNOS, which has some of the most impressively fortified walls still standing in western Turkey, along with a well-preserved Greek style theatre, Roman baths and a Byzantine basilica. Recent work has resulted in greater restoration of partial buildings with local marble, a true fusion of old and new, allowing you to enjoy the buildings in all their former glory.
Down at the delta, where the river joins the sea, you rarely will be lucky enough to find one of the rare loggerhead turtles, Caretta Caretta, but you can if you are lucky - see them swimming right under the boatin Candir Lagoon. You can also disembark at the end of İztuzu beach, a 40 minutes cruise from the centre of town. Alternatively, you can opt to visit the beach by local bus or dolmus, a 20 minute journey through local scenery to the opposite end of the beach. The beach has sunbeds, parasols and snack serving local snacks, ice-creams and drinks. Swimming in the sea is excellent anywhere along this 6 km stretch of white sand.
Iztuzu Beach has to be one of the most unique beaches in the world, surrounded on one side by the sea and on the other by the Dalyan river. Located about 8km from Dalyan by road and a 30 minute journey on the river boats. A parking lot is located at the beach and this is where the Mini-bus stop is. The beach is about 6km long and has facilities at each end, the end where the road leads to is the quieter part and has toilets, changing rooms, showers and a cafe selling hot and cold food and drinks, sunbeds and parasols are also available for rent.
Dalyan has developed from a small village into a thriving little town. There is now a good choice of restaurants - with fresh river fish a speciality. Carpets, jewellery, spice shops and small grocers. Every Saturday there is a busy market/pazar where bartering for bargains is half the fun of going.
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