Tıme For Fun: Kocaeli’s Ormanya Nature Park
Imagine a magical place where people of all ages can have fun at the same time. Located in the Kartepe district of Kocaeli (not too far from Istanbul) Ormanya Nature Park is the world's third and Europe's largest natural habitat and is on its way to becoming one of Türkiye's most important natural tourism destinations.
A product of a 10-year project, Ormanya Nature Park stands out as an exemplary project around the world with its visions. Ormanya Nature Park is entirely made of natural materials like wood. One of its goals is to create an environment for plants and animals that is as close to their natural habitat as possible. Doing that successfully, especially with the Wildlife Area and Children’s Zoo. There is also a Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation Center in Ormanya where animals are rehabilitated and released back into their natural habitat.
The park also offers participatory implementations for children, such as Nature School. With a total of over 800 animals from 67 different species, Ormanya welcomes visitors from all around the world. Nature Park offers a wide range of outdoor activities, from camping to horseback riding. The Nature Museum in Ormanya houses fossils of various extinct animal species as well as an herbarium. Inside the park, you will find two lakes, Hobbit houses, bicycling and hiking trails, an adventure park, sport angling, a library and a lot more. To get the most out of this park, spring and summer are the best seasons to visit. Remember to schedule a visit on a day other than Monday as it is closed to visitors on Mondays. Here is how you can make the most out of your visit and have fun in Ormanya.
Silence, please! In the birdwatching area, there are bird food stations located on trees and the ground. While the birds are munching, you can observe or photograph them. Many bird species including robins, nuthatches, finches and woodpeckers may come out to give you a glimpse into their world. Every Saturday, you may also join an expert-led birdwatching event where you can discover more about rare bird species and birdwatching.
Caravan Camping and Tent Camping Opportunities
If you can't get enough of Ormanya, you can stay at the park's camping for longer. A total of 40 caravans and 100 tents can be accommodated in the camping area. Here you can enjoy a comfortable camping experience while connecting with Kartepe's breathtaking nature.
The Botanical Road
The Botanical Road, one of the forest's most important parts, gives visitors extensive information about aromatic plants as they stroll along a 200-meter path. You can meet with the diverse flora of the Anatolian geography and immerse yourself in their aromatic scents.
OrmanKöy and its Hobbit Houses
You must see the wonderful OrmanKöy before you leave because from 7 to 70, children and adults alike will love this place. Among the oak trees of this small village, there are colourful hobbit houses and a watermill. These houses can make you feel as if you are on a fantastic movie set. The pond that flows between them provides a very pleasant view as well. Bring a cup of coffee or sandwich to have yourself a little picnic and don’t forget to take plenty of photos in the hobbit world!