Ski resort attracts visitors with artificial ice mountain, zipline
An ice wall and a zip line installed in Palandöken, one of Turkey’s favorite winter wonderlands in the eastern province of Erzurum, have become the new address of thrill-seekers.
The “artificial ice mountain,” built on the southern runway at an altitude of 2,300 meters, and the 700-meter-long zipline in the same region are the first of its kind to be seen in ski resorts in the country.
Adventure enthusiasts who complete their climb on the ice ride the zipline to pass the opposite mountain.
Those who come to Palandöken can also indulge in activities such as sledding, paragliding, night skiing, ice climbing, giant swing, human slingshot and zipline apart from skiing and snowboarding.
Ski center with 24 trails
Palandöken Ski Center, which welcomes a countless number of local and foreign tourists every year, stands out among other ski centers with its unique trails.
With enough capacity for 12,000 skiers, the center has 24 trails that are among the longest and steepest in the world.
While beginners can enjoy eight easy and mid-level tracks, for enthusiasts who want to further push the limits, there are three advanced-level tracks as well.
Holding the title for having the longest ski track in Turkey, Palandöken, which hosted the University Winter Games in 2011 and the European Youth Olympic Winter Festival in 2017, offers local and foreign visitors a true skiing experience.
The summit of the 3,000-meter mountain is called “Büyük Ejder” (The Great Dragon).
Easily accessible transport
Appealing to skiers of all skill levels, Palandöken provides some advantages as it is very close to the city center and airport, unlike other resorts.
Palandöken Ski Center is only 20 kilometers from the airport and 4 kilometers from the city center, making transportation easy.
Calling those who visit Palandöken as “very lucky,” Erzurum Metropolitan Mayor Mehmet Sekmen said that hotels and the municipality guarantee snow at all times with the artificial snow system installed at the facility.
“Currently, skiing is possible only in Palandöken in the country. Those who come here can see the natural beauties outside of skiing and taste the rich flavors such as regional kebab and stuffed kadayif,” Sekmen said.
For foodies who want to fuel up before hitting Palandöken’s slopes, Erzurum also offers a nice variation in rich Anatolian cuisine.
Curd and sheep cheese are the most famous ingredients of Erzurum’s cuisine, which is eaten at every course of a meal.
Ayran meal, yayla soup, herle meal, kesme soup and paça soup are some of the famous foods specific to central Erzurum and villages. Cağ kebab, which has become one of the symbols of the city, is another popular dish.