Altınbeşik Cave breaks tourist record with 60,000 in six months
The Altınbeşik Cave, hosting Turkey’s biggest and the world’s third largest underwater lake, has welcomed some 60,000 local and international tourists in just six months, breaking its own tourism record.
The cave was opened in July to tourism after two years of postponement due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“The cave, located in the national park in the İbradı district, amazes everyone touring it with boats, especially photography aficionados,” said Yılmaz Özdoğan, a municipality worker in charge of the cave, told the İhlas News Agency on Dec. 22.
Due to its alkaline solution, “the turquoise colored lake offers a visual treat,” he added.
Calling as “a water paradise,” Özdoğan highlighted that the cave will be open to tourism all year. “Unless there will be heavy precipitation, we will keep the cave open for alternative tourism lovers.”
Apart from locals, German and Russian tourists showed great interest to the cave, he noted.
Located some 13 kilometers away from the İbradi center, the cave of Altınbeşik, which means “golden cradle,” hosts a 250-meter-long cruising path between the cave walls.
The deepest point is 16-meters, and the cave has a warmth of 15 degrees Celsius all year.
“This is a wonder of the world. I am so happy to be here,” Muhammet Ali Şimşek, a local tourist from Istanbul, said.
The cave also has a mascot, a cat named “Tekir,” raised by the national park’s workers after being found abandoned.
Tekir joins the boat rides, watches the surroundings and accompanies the tourists.
The highest number of tourists the cave has hosted was an annual number of 69,000 in 2019.