Isparta lavender harvest tour in August
The production of essential oil from lavender is a significant source of revenue in Turkey, where lavender gardens boast lively purple colors, creating a distinctive opportunity in eco-tourism. For around 50 years, lavender production has been available in the Kuyucak Village of the Keçiborlu district of Isparta province, making up more than half of lavender production in Turkey.
Lying 47 kilometers from Isparta, Kuyucak is a charming village situated on a high hill at the edge of the Taurus Mountains, surrounded by lavender-covered slopes and plains. Today, the village has a population of 250 residents.
Kuyucak Köyü is still quite unknown to visitors who have yet to discover this idyllic village. Kuyucak, as well as the nearby Kuşçular, Çukurören, and Yeşilyurt villages, are some of the prime cultivators and producers of lavender in Turkey. Lavender has changed the course of life in Kuyucak as many people have left the area because of its barren land and extremely dry climate. With only around 90 households, the villagers of Kuyucak make a living through lavender cultivation and fishing as well as picking and drying the area’s naturally growing flowers and herbs such as hollyhock, daisies, and thyme for the country’s herbalist shops. With its natural cobblestone streets, mudbrick houses, and wild lavender bushes just sprouting out of the sidewalks, Kuyucak is truly a beautiful fairytale place to discover.
At the beginning of June, the lavender fields fully blossom in July, when the whole area is overcome with a beautiful purple hue. Of course, the scent of lavender also permeates the entire area and by August the harvest begins. During harvesting, the flowers are carefully cut from the middle of the stem to encourage further growth for the next season. Due to the fact that lavender can survive without much water and because one root can produce flowers for around 20 years, the lavender fields of Kuyucak have been quite a prolific undertaking.
After harvest, some of the lavender is processed into oil to be used for cosmetics, while some are dried to be sold to various firms around the country. Of course, for visitors, there’s also plenty of lavender-based shopping to be done including delicious lavender honey, lavender tea, dried lavender, lavender oil, lavender tonic, and lavender soap. One of the best times to visit Kuycak is during the second week of July when the lavender fields are in full bloom.
According to data from the Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat) in 2013, the village produces 93 percent of all lavender produced in Turkey on about 3,000 decades of land. With its lavender fields, Kuyucak has begun to draw the attention of tourists. Those who see the clusters of lavenders that have sprung up on the streets, the mudbrick houses and the sides of the sidewalk, are literally enthralled by the sight and smell of the flower.
This floral paradise owes its natural beauty and even a substantial portion of its economy to the purple plant. Production began as a leisure activity in the gardens of local residents but spread from the streets and local rose gardens to become major commercial production. So the lavender production turned into a significant source of commercial production despite starting as a hobby in small private gardens, on streets edges of and on the sides of rose gardens.
As stated by the city's culture and tourism directorate, lavender begins to bloom in June and germinates in a 45- to 50-day period. During the flowering period, the village is nearly entirely painted in purple, in a feast for the eyes which attracts shutterbugs from all across Turkey. The lavender harvest begins in August.
Tourists to the Kuyucak village can take a tour of these lush gardens, participate in the photo safari, participate in tours around the designated bicycle and hiking trails and learn how to extract lavender oil from these beautiful plants.
Courtesy to Daily Sabah
Published January 5,2017