Uludağ National Park

Uludağ National Park is a nature preserve covering an area around Uludag Mountain (also known as Mysian Olympus or Bithynian Olympus) that reaches an elevation of 2543 meters of 8,343 feet above sea level.


Location: 22 km (14 mi) South of Bursa Map

Tel. (0224) 283 21 97

Open: daily


Uludağ , within the borders of Bursa province, is the largest winter and nature sports center in Turkey with an altitude of 2,543 m . Uludag; It is the highest mountain in the Marmara Region . Uludağ, which extends in the northwest-southeast direction, is 40 km long. Its width is 15–24 km. The slopes of this mountain, which has a massive and majestic appearance, facing Bursa are gradual, while the sides facing Orhaneli to the south are flat and steeper. The highest point is Uludağ Tepe (2,543 m), located in the lakes region . When approaching Bursa from afar and in the hotel area, the high hill seen is generally perceived as the summit. However, the name of the hill that looks like the Summit is Keşiş Hill and its height is 2,486 m. Uludağ hill (2,543 m) is located 5 km southeast of Keşiş Hill. On the north side of the mountain there are Sarıalan, Kirazlı, Kadı and Sobra plateaus.



In his book Herodotus History, written by Herodotus (490-420 BC), one of the first historians of the ancient age , Uludağ is referred to as "Olympos" and he describes the tragedy of Atys, the son of Croesus, king of Lydia , in Olympos. 400 years after Herodotus, the Amasya-born geographer Strabon (64 BC-AD 21) wrote Uludağ, Olympos and Mysia as Olympos in his book Geography, which consists of 17 books. Strabo; He states that the original name "Mysia" means hornbeam tree in Lydians. After Christianity became the official religion in the Roman Empire , the first monasteries where monks lived began to be established in Uludağ after the 3rd century, and the monasteries reached their highest level in number in the 8th century. 28 monasteries were established in the valleys and hills between Nilüfer stream and Deliçay in Uludağ . Orhan Gazi captured Bursa after a long siege, and while some of the monasteries on the mountain where the monks lived were abandoned, some of them became hermitages for Muslim dervishes such as Doğu Baba, Geyikli Baba, Abdal Murat. After the conquest of Bursa , the Turks named the mountain "Monk Mountain". German traveler Reinhold Lubenau, who came to Bursa in the 16th century, states that after Uludağ was taken over by the Turks, the monks went up to the mountain only to worship during the day and the monasteries were built with stone walls without the use of mortar. "Olympos Mysios" or "Keşiş Mountain" was named "Uludağ" in 1925, with the initiatives of the Bursa Provincial Geographical Society and the suggestion of Osman Şevki Bey .



In 1933, a hotel and a regular road were built on Uludağ, so from that date onwards, Uludağ became a center for winter ski sports. The start of regular bus services has further increased the interest here. This road, which was later covered with asphalt, directly connects all settlements of Uludağ, except Kadıyayla, to Bursa . Uludağ modern mountain facilities, Turkey's first cable car , Bursa Teleferik , which was put into service in 1963, has become the center of mountain and winter tourism as it is right next to Bursa, the fourth largest city. Uludağ is Turkey 's largest ski resort. The suitability of the road conditions, the presence of snow in the long winter season (between October and April) and the unique views attract tourists here. The view of Istanbul , the Marmara Sea and the surrounding areas in clear weather from the peak of the mountain gives this place a special feature. Thermal springs were formed here due to the presence of hot water springs in the eastern and northern foothills close to the Bursa Plain . These hot springs in the Çekirge district of Bursa cure many diseases. The cable car was completely renewed in 2014 and extended to the Kurbağakaya (Hotels) area. In addition, there are summer camps organized by the Red Crescent Association every summer in Sarıalan, which is the intermediate station of the cable car, and in Çobankaya, which is reached by chairlift from Sarıalan. The old senatorium building located in Kirazlıyayla is currently used as a hotel. There are 15 private and 12 public accommodation facilities in Uludağ. There are many chair lifts and teleski lines.


Climate and vegetation (flora)

Traces of old glaciers can be found in the high places of Uludağ. Aynalıgöl, Karagöl and Kilimligöl glacial lakes in the north of Karatepe are the most important of these traces. The white snowdrifts of these lakes add to the beauty of these places. There are permanent snow layers in the northern bowl below Uludağ Hill (2543 m), the summit of Uludağ. It is the lowest mountain in Turkey with permanent snow.

Uludağ is one of the rare places in terms of herbal richness. The awakening, which begins in the lower levels in March, continues at its peak throughout the summer. Especially on the mountain, which is located above the forest belt and known as barren by many people, there are very rich and rare plant species unique to this region.

From 350 m: laurel , olive , tar juniper , hazelnut , labdanum , heather , red pine , maquis and shrub areas,
Between 350–700 m: chestnut , maple , judas tree , berry, mountain strawberry , olive , gooseberry , Cretan arborvitae , arborvitae , hornbeam , dogwood , hawthorn , stag thistle , ivy , wild laurel , elm , beech , aspen , larch ,
Between 700–1000 m: chestnut, beech , sessile oak , aspen , larch , or dogwood, hawthorn, stag thistle, medlar ,
From 1000-1050 meters: beech forests reach up to 1500 meters.
Between 1500–2100 m: Uludağ fir , dwarf juniper, blueberry , bearberry , wild rose, deer thistle, shepherd's grape , willow , larch , beech, hornbeam, aspen, sweet potato, yoghurt , thyme, bitter gourd , musk onion, chicory , spring star, many-flowered poppy , wild apple.

Among the larch forests, alpine plants are dominant, represented by Scots pine, dwarf junipers after 2100 m, and herbaceous species up to 2300 m. Oak , chestnut , plane and walnut trees can be found in the foothills of the mountain , Mediterranean plants in the 300-400 m section, and moist forest plants higher up.

The climate of the mountain shows gradual changes from the lower levels to the top. A transitional type of Mediterranean climate and Black Sea climate in the lower levels is observed. In summer, it does not have as dry a climate as the Mediterranean. While it turns into a humid micro-thermal climate type towards the summit, very harsh weather conditions are observed at higher altitudes in winter. It is located in the first family of the Eastern Mediterranean climate group. Annual average temperature decreases towards the peak and precipitation increases. The annual average temperature in Bursa (100 m) is 14.6 °C and the annual total precipitation is 696.3 mm, in Sarıalan meteorological station (1620 m) located on the northern slope of Uludağ, it is 5.5 °C and 1252.1 mm, It reaches 4.6 °C and 1483.6 mm at the Uludağ Zirve (hotels) meteorological station (1877 m). Especially on the north-facing side, a climate similar to the Black Sea climate is observed. Orographic precipitation (slope precipitation) is observed in Sarıalan, Bakacak, Çobankaya locations in summer. While 14.3% of the annual precipitation in Sarıalan falls in summer, this rate drops to 10.9% in Uludağ hotels and 10.4% in Bursa. The number of snowy days also increases towards the peak. While the number of snowy days in Bursa is 7.5 days and the number of snow-covered days is 9.4 days, the number of snowy days in Sarıalanda (1620 m) increases to 48.9 days and the number of snow-covered days increases to 109.9 days, and in Uludağ hotels (1877 m). ) the number of days with snowfall reaches 67.5 days and the number of days covered with snow reaches 179.3 days. The highest snow depth observed in Uludağ is 430 cm. The highest snow depths are generally reached in March. Snowfall can be observed in the hotels area between September and June. But mostly snowfalls start in October and continue intermittently until May. The thickness suitable for skiing is generally reached between 25 November and 15 December and lasts until 15 April and 1 May, depending on the rainfall. Considering the average statistical data for skiing, the average number of frosty days is 144.7 days, and the number of days with the highest daytime temperature below 0 is 54.9 days. The most suitable temperatures for skiing are observed between December and the end of March.


Lake district

Uludağ is an altitude where glaciers were first found in Asia Minor. In fact, traces of the ice age in our country were first found in Uludağ in 1904. The Pleistocene glacial traces found on Uludağ are 200 - 300 m extending from northwest to southeast between the summits surface and the high plateaus plain. It consists of circuses carved into a relatively high steep wall. The circuses are the most visible element of the morphology in the northern part of the summit township of Uludağ, arranged from northwest to southeast. We examine them in three teams according to their positions: a) Western group, b) Middle group, c) Eastern group.

a) Circus group in the West
There are two cirque lakes included in this group. There are Koğukdere Lake and Çaylıdere Lake. These two lakes are also called "Twin Circus Lake". These circuses are located just north of 2500 meters high Sığaktepe. The dimensions of both circuses are almost the same, approximately 300 - 400 meters, and their base elevation is 2200 meters.

b) The group of circuses in the middle
This group includes Heybeli Lake and Buzlu Lake. It is located in the middle part of the steep northern wall of the summit township of Uludağ. Among the cirques included in this group, the slightly higher and flatter ridges consist entirely of marble, while small karst pits and humped rock-like shapes attract attention.

c) Circus group in the east
Three circuses make up this group, which constitutes the most magnificent and beautiful circuses of Uludağ. These cirques, whose highest point is eroded on the northern slopes of Karatepe (2550 m.), are formed by a lake named Aynalı, Karagöl and Kilimli from west to east.

Aynalıgöl circus, located in the westernmost part of these, has the shape of a large horseshoe facing northeast. The diameter of the circus is about 500 meters; In other words, it is larger than all the circuses in the central and western groups. Three sides of the circus rise as very high walls. The southern half of these walls consists of marble, and the northern half consists of granite, gneiss and hornblende schists. Thus, Aynalı Circus, like all Uludağ circuses, is located in the granite-marble contact. The second of the circuses in the Eastern group is Karagöl Circus. It is almost circular in shape. Just south of Karagöl Circus, Uludağ Hill (2543 m), the highest point of Uludağ, rises. Thus, the height of the steep cirque walls surrounding the lake is approaching 300 meters. Karagöl Circus, like its neighboring circuses, faces north-east and has a moraine wall of approximately 10 meters in front of it. The third of the circuses in the eastern group and also the last of the Uludağ circuses is the Kilimli Lake Circus, the eastern neighbor of Karagöl. The base of this cirque, through which the granite-marble contact line passes, is occupied by the relatively smaller and less deep Kilimligöl. The level of this lake is 2330 meters. The excess water of the lake leaks from under a 20-meter-high moraine wall that covers the cirque and reappears a little further down. The feet of these three lakes merge in the future to form Aksu, which goes down to the eastern end of the Bursa Plain.

Fauna of the lakes region
As a result of zooplankton sampling in the lakes, 36 taxa were identified, including 7 taxa from 11 families of Rotifers (wheel animals), and 5 taxa from 3 families of copepods. When we look at the distribution of rotifers according to stations, it is seen that Kilimligöl is the richest station with 13 taxa. This is followed by Aynalıgöl, Karagöl and Buzlu Lake with 9 and 8 taxa. The poorest station in terms of rotifers was Heybeligöl with 4 taxa. Varying numbers of Oligochaete (ringworm) species were detected at all stations. Although the Naididae (mudworm) family is dominant in terms of species diversity, no Naidid species were found in Kilimligöl, Karagöl and Aynagöl. As a result, a total of 82 taxa were identified, 36 in the zooplankton, 38 in the zoobenthos, and 8 in the vertebrate fauna of the glacial lakes in Uludağ.


Animal community (fauna)

Various animals such as bear, wolf, fox, squirrel, rabbit, weasel, snake, wild boar, lizard, vulture, mountain eagle, woodpecker, owl, dove, mountain nightingale and sparrow survive in Uludağ National Park . The red forest ant also provides great benefit to Uludağ forests. A deer breeding farm was also established in Yeşiltarla in 1966. The deer on the farm, which operated for a long time, were released into the wild in 2006. Bearded Vulture (Grpaetus barbatus) is an endemic species living in Uludağ. There are 46 species of butterflies and the Apollo butterfly is endemic to Uludağ. This butterfly, which is the largest butterfly in Turkey, sometimes finds the opportunity to live even at an altitude of 3,000 m. Their bodies are covered with black fur-like feathers. The dark color of the trunk helps it absorb heat from the sun. These wings enable the butterfly to soar tremendously.