Savsat Sahara Milli Park

Most of my travel plans go smoothly. On the odd occasion though, I do get it wrong and I end up traveling too fast. This means I miss out on some intriguing destinations of which one was Savsat Sahara Milli Park. Located in the North-east region of Turkey, it is a picture perfect landscape scene and I didn’t even stay the night!

Savsat Sahara Turkey

Savsat Sahara Milli Park – Artvin Turkey

Due to prices of accommodation and a haphazard transport system, independent travel plans to the north-east, were getting expensive.  Prices of  group tours were cheaper, so I met seven strangers in Trabzon and we slowly made our way around the region visiting natural landmarks and historical buildings.

We had left the province of Artvin and after a gruelling walk in Hells gorge started heading towards the city of Kars. At this point, I had never heard of Savsat Sahara Milli Park. It was mentioned briefly on the itinerary but I didn’t expect much because it was listed as a drive through.

Starring out the window as the landscape slowly changed, my interest suddenly peaked. I was stunned. We had arrived in Savsat and the view was unlike anything I had seen in Turkey before.

Savsat Turkey Park

Houses dotted over hills in among perfectly paved roads and lush green fields, made it all seem quite surreal. It was all very neat and manicured, like the set of a blockbuster film. I felt relief that the area is protected by the government because it would be heart-breaking to see it disappear because of overzealous developers.

Savsat National Park Turkey

I wanted to head further down into the valley to explore and met locals but after a photo stop of thirty minutes, we continued on our journey.  I regret that but didn’t have a choice. Leaving the group would mean losing four days traveling costs that I had already paid.

As we headed further out of the park, we come across wooden Yayla houses used by Turks during summer because they are cooler. Farmers were walking in fields with cows and sheep and the landscape changed again from mountains and hills to flat plains. Filled with pink and yellow flowers, my expectations of dusty, barren land had been proved so very wrong.

Driving to Kars

Familiarity with Turkey has slowly grown on me over the last decade but I am now reminded many more unique places exist in Turkey  of which one of them is Savsat Sahara Milli Park.

Even though I have been there, it is still on my bucket list. This place deserves more exploration.

Savsat Sahara National Park

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Hi. My name is Natalie Sayin and I am the author of The Turkish Travel Blog. I am an Internet addict with a passion for history. Read my story here or leave a comment below to join the discussions.
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  1. says

    . . beautiful, beautiful place – we both need to get back there asap as there’s a serious threat from gold mining!

    • Nat says

      I read that comment and was really surprised Alan because it is a protected national park. Did your friend mean the main town instead? Will look into it and try and find out more

  2. says

    Wow, what gorgeous landscapes! Definitely not what I think of when I think of Turkey.

    • Nat says

      Definitely not the typical stereotyped look

  3. Ali says

    Dear Natalie,

    Hi, we are planning to visit Savsat Sahara National Park in first week of Oct. Would you pls. let us know that is it good time to visit and travel route from Istanbul. Thank you.



    • Nat says

      From Istanbul fly into Trabzon or Kars and have a hire car ready because public transport in that area is ad hoc. The time of year is fine, although you will find it cold at night so make sure you wrap up warm.

  4. Haider Ali says

    Dear Natalie,

    Thanks for your reply, am very much interested in visiting/seeing the places of first 3 pics of this post. Would you pls. mention the names of these places, if remember, or do you take these pics while going to some place ?. Would you believe, am going to travel Trabzon only to see the scenic places that are shown in your first 3 pics :), so that’s the reason like to know the exact location/name of these places. Thank you



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