Situated 7 kilometers from Cape Gelidonya, one of the most treacherous and dangerous points in southern Turkey’s Antalya, Suluada is proving to be the perfect location for adrenaline-seeking deepwater soloists.
Located off the coast of the Teke Peninsula in the Taurus Mountains, by the clear waters of the Mediterranean, Suluada offers a great travel experience with its aquamarine waters, verdant nature landscape, and mountainous rocks. This combination of natural assets also makes it a great place to practice deepwater soloing (DWS).
But what sort of extreme sport is deepwater soloing or psicobloc, as it is sometimes called?
This unique pursuit entails you climbing on rocks rising high above the sea with only your trusty climbing shoes and no other equipment whatsoever. Your reward or only safety net for the challenging and dangerous climb is the cool waters of the sea underneath, waiting for you to jump in or catch you if you happen to fall. The underwater photos that come out are nothing short of breathtaking. To reach this spot, you’ll just need to travel via boat and hop off onto the rocks to get climbing.
Instructor Metin Yılmaz is one of the select few locals who has been in the business for a lifetime, providing guidance to divers, climbers and waterskiers in the region for 20 years.
Yılmaz says he can see why Suluada has risen in popularity, especially in the last decade or so. He attributes it to its natural topography and crystal clear waters in Adrasan village.
“We are planning to do some free climbing and free-falling here, we call it ‘deep-water soloing.’ It’s very difficult to translate it into Turkish in a complete sense, hence the English is widely accepted. It’s a sport without equipment, just with climbing shoes. On occasion, we may also bring a towel or some material to dry our hands,” he told Anadolu Agency (AA).
If you are just getting into the sport or want to give a go, Suluada may be the perfect spot. Yılmaz says it is a great place for more experienced deepwater soloists as well but that all over Suluada there are rocks of different heights and characters that also make it suitable for beginners.
“There are local and foreign tourists who come to Antalya just for deepwater soloing. The world-famous climbers of Northface and Redbull teams have also come to Suluada,” he said.
However, Yılmaz cautioned that not everyone would be able to climb the rocks and enter the caves as these famous athletes do. “That’s why we have discovered new places. We find places where beginners and intermediate levels will be able to climb. Suluada is one of these spots.”