Uncovering Bolu's hidden delights
Known for its dense forests, enchanting hot springs and beautiful surroundings, untouristed Bolu in Turkey's northwest is one of Turkey’s most promising provinces for those seeking a getaway in beautiful surroundings. This area of natural beauty is currently attracting attention in the world of luxury homes as wealthy buyers seek the privacy and natural surroundings that more built-up areas simply can't provide.
A one-of-a-kind villa, designed by Property Turkey, has recently been completed in a private location in this beautiful region. Our clients, seeking something out-of-the-ordinary in an area of spectacular beauty, fell in love with Bolu and decided it was the ideal spot for their extraordinary custom build.
Read on to discover more about the delights of this untouched region, and how you can go about building your own dream home there.
Bolu then and now
Like the rest of the country, Bolu’s history can be traced back thousands of years, in this case to the Phrygians in 1200 BC. The province was ruled variously by the Persians, Romans, Seljuks and the Ottomans, and traces of ruins from each era can be seen around the province.
Today, the centre of the Bolu province is Bolu, a small, busy centre with a population of 130,000. Dwarfed by mountains and surrounded by thick forests, it's a prosperous university town with a well-attended Monday market. An important midpoint between capital Ankara and Turkey's largest city Istanbul, it takes around three hours to drive to each location.
There are a number of venerable old buildings in Bolu City. The chief mosque in the city, Yildirim Beyazit, has existed on its site since 1382. There’s also a 19th century hammam and several inns dating back to the 18th century, which visitors can still stay in. A museum in the city centre has some great exhibits showcasing the area’s history with items dating back to Neolithic times.
There are also a number of surrounding villages famous for their Ottoman homes.
You might be surprised to discover the province of Bolu is a renowned culinary destination. Foodies will love Mengen, famous in the province for its excellent cooks and its innovative cooking school. There’s an annual Chef’s Festival, where chefs gather to showcase their best versions of Turkish specialities.
Local specialties include wood-fired dough (most village houses have an earth or brick oven), corn dough, halva, gomec kebabs, pastries, rice dishes, walnut muffins, yogurt and bean soup, zucchini pancakes and many more intriguing dishes foodies will enjoy exploring.
Bolu’s natural wonders
The beautiful Lake Abant is a popular tourist destination. Around half an hour’s drive from the city, the 45-metre deep tectonic lake sits at 1300 metres above sea level and is fed by underground springs. The lake is much photographed thanks to its pretty water lilies and striking location deep within the forest. During winter months the lake freezes over completely and people can walk across it.
The artificial Golcuk Lake is also within easy reach of the city and surrounded by dense forest on the slopes of the Aladaglar mountains. It’s a favourite for day trippers from the city, who come to picnic or hike around the lake.
Yedigoller National Park is an area of simply stunning natural beauty. Meaning “seven lakes,” Yedigoller is a 40km drive from the city centre and is the perfect spot to escape the world. The seven small lakes here are interconnected by underground and overground streams. Unless you have a powerful 4x4, it’s difficult to visit Yedigoller in the winter due to the snows. In summer months the national park is packed with picnickers, campers and hikers.
For ski enthusiasts, Kartalkaya is the ideal daytrip. The resort, located in the Koroglu Mountains, has a reputation of being one of the best winter sports centres in the country. However, despite its reputation it’s very peaceful, and skiiers will be able to enjoy its 30 kilometres of alpine and cross country trails in relative peace.
Designing and building your dream home in Bolu
Turkey is one of the few countries where it’s possible to design and construct your dream home at a favourable price. There are many options for anyone who wants that individual design in a location of their choice.
In a location like Bolu, low land prices and construction costs make custom design extremely attractive. Bolu is a low density area so prices are much lower than other parts of Turkey, for example Antalya, Kalkan and Bodrum. Bolu is perfect for nature lovers and silence seekers, looking for something away from the norm. Please see the video above which showcases the home we have designed for our client. Nestled in dense forest a short drive from Bolu City, this superb contemporary villa has everything you could possibly desire for modern living - but well away from the hustle and bustle of the modern world.
Exclusive, stylish homes are very much a new trend in Turkey, which means unique homes are few - and therefore in high demand. Some of our clients have designed and built homes in order to sell them on straightaway, or others have chosen to reside in the properties, confident that they will easily be sold to one of the increasing numbers of buyers looking for something different.
Read here to discover how - and why - the MA family decided to build their dream home in Bolu.
Property Turkey custom build
We started Property Turkey Custom Build in 2006 to cater to the growing numbers of clients seeking unique properties in amazing parts of Turkey. We focus on one-off projects, and produce designs with respected architects and interior designers who specialise in contemporary luxury homes, as well as an established construction company who we’ve worked with for more than a decade.
We also work closely with the local municipality to ensure all bureaucratic boxes are ticked, and we work with you every step of the way.