The Tale of Agva Sightseeing Between Two Streams

We are in Agva, which originated from Latin as our origin and means “the town between the two rivers”. As it is very close to Istanbul, it is an escape route preferred by young and old people. Agva is the place for those who are overwhelmed by the busy and crowded environment of Istanbul.

The Tale of Agva Sightseeing Between Two Streams
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Agva Travel Guide

Agva excursion route is one of the frequented routes of many of us because it is close to Istanbul. Even though my personal preference is the Beykoz-Riva-Şile route, I will make a nice closing with Agva in the final. So much so that I use this route several times a year. It is the starting point of the Western Black Sea, located in the northeast of Istanbul. In a sense, Agva is the escape route of Istanbulites.

Agva History

Agva, which has hosted many civilizations from the Hittites to the Phrygians and from the Roman Empire to the Ottoman Empire in the past, has been the most strategic region of Istanbul on the Black Sea side throughout the ages. When the history of Agva is mentioned, one should not forget the famous Naval Empires of History, Genoese and Venice.

Today, more than its historical importance, the mega-city has become a harbor for those fleeing from Istanbul. Ağva is a frequent destination for those who want to breathe away from the traffic, chaos and crowd. It offers us a peaceful environment alone with its nature that we have not polluted yet.

Agva Public Beach
Agva Public Beach

We Relieve Stress

Agva, which embraces visitors of all ages with its nature integrated with the Black Sea, is located between Göksu and Yesilcay (Kocadere) streams. This natural wonder seaside town, where calm streams flow into the Black Sea, will be like a medicine for you to get rid of troubles and stresses. We hope you read our Agva travel guide notes in one breath and visit this place as soon as possible.

Where is Agva? Transportation Information

How to get to Agva, which is approximately 100 kilometers from Istanbul? I definitely recommend you to go to Agva with your own car or a rental car. But even if you can’t go by car, it’s not the end of the world, of course. There are daily Agva Tours. Moreover, they tour the places to visit in Ağva in order and accompanied by a guide.

Agva Maps
Agva Map

Apart from these transportation methods, for those who do not have private vehicles, they can be reached by using public transportation. It can be reached in approximately 3 hours by buses with line number Iett 139A from Üsküdar and by vehicles belonging to Üsküdar Tourism via Şile, departing from Harem. Üsküdar-Şile-Ağva Bus Schedules departure times:

https://www.iett.istanbul/tr/main/hatlar/139A/ to fallow.

You can go to Agva by following the Sile Signs as soon as you exit the bridges on both the D-100 (E5) and TEM (Q3) highways, without even needing directions.

Very soon, the highway built between Şile and Agva will be put into service and the road will be shorter. When the new Agva road, which consists of many tunnels and viaducts, is put into service, it will be possible to arrive in a much shorter time.

However, it is worth remembering this. We may not be able to find the fascinating view on both the coastal road and the forest road on the new road.

Places to Visit in Agva

Agva district, a boutique town on the Black Sea coast, is within the provincial borders of Istanbul. It is located in a location that you can easily reach via the Şile road. If we list the memorable ones in our travel guide;

  1. Agva district center (Agva Bazaar)
  2. Agva Beach (Mercan Kosk)
  3. Lighthouse
  4. Beach and Coastal Road
  5. Safari Tour in Goksu River and Yesilcay Creek
  6. Kilimli Hill and Kilimli Bay
  7. Kurfalli and Hacilli trekking tracks
  8. Hacilli Hill and Waterfall Tour
  9. Weeping Rocks (Aglayan Kayalar)

1. Agva District Center

It has the characteristic of painted with white paint on the exterior of the buildings in the town center of Agva. In addition, although it is not as obvious as the lime-painted white Bodrum houses, there is a similar but relatively smaller bazaar in the nearby area.

The most you will see in the bazaar will be shops and shops selling clothes made of Şile Cloth. In addition, there are boutique shops selling souvenirs such as handmade wind chimes, cabinet ornaments and key chains made of shiny seashells.

2. Agva Beach (Mercan Kosk and Public Beach)

When you come to Agva by the coastal road, you can enter from the parking lot on the left side of the district entrance. Visitors who wish can reach this beach from the town center. It starts from the Lighthouse and extends to the village of Suayipli. Agva Beach, which has a length of 3 km with an appearance that does not look like Antalya beaches, consists of two separate parts.

The entrance to the beach is free and if you want to rent sunbeds and umbrellas, you can rent them from the Mercan Köşk business of Şile Municipality.

– If you are one of those who say that my beach towel is enough for me, you can use the beach for free.

I would like to talk about two negative features of the beach. First, stray dogs can be quite annoying.

The second is the chaos created by those who want to swim outside the allowed area despite all the warnings of the lifeguard. Apart from these, you will feel as if you are on the Mediterranean beaches.

Those who come to Agva Beach with their vehicles can use the parking lot at the entrance of the beach. The parking fees of Şile Municipality are as follows;

Usage PeriodParking Fee
0-30 minutesFree
0-2 Hours10 ₺ (1 €)
2-4 Hours15 ₺ (1.5 €)
4-8 Hours20 ₺ (2 €)
8-12 Hours25 ₺ (2.5 €)
12-24 Hours50 ₺ (5 €)
24-48 Hours100 ₺ (10 €)
Agva Beach (Mercan Kosk) Parking Fee
Agva Mercan Kosk Beach
Agva Mercan Kosk Beach

3. Lighthouse

The Lighthouse, located on the coastline in the town center, is one of the oldest structures. The drawing of the lighthouse, which was built by Sultan Abdulaziz during the Ottoman period, was undertaken by Parisian architects, but Turkish engineers undertook the construction.

Although it was built recently with the lighthouse in Şile, the Agva lighthouse is rather small and short compared to the Şile Lighthouse.

Lighthouse
Lighthouse

To take a brief look at the history of the lighthouse, it was built to guide the Ottoman Navy against possible Russian attacks during the Crimean War that broke out at the end of the 1800s. The Agva Lighthouse, which is still operational even after 120 years, is the background for the selfie photos of the visitors rather than guiding the ships.

4. Promenade and Beaches

You can use two different routes from Istanbul to Agva. If you use the coastal road when you come from Şile, you follow a more scenic route, accompanied by the Black Sea and forest, compared to the other road. When you come from the Agva coastline and the coastal road, you reach Agva beaches. Kurfalli beach, Suayiplli beach are some of the beaches on the road.

There is another beach nearby in Kilimli Bay, where you can go with your private car. Moreover, Kilimli Beach is also suitable for camping. However, the best beach I can recommend in terms of beach transportation and facilities would be Ağva Beach, located in the town centre.

5. Goksu and Yesilcay Safari Tour

You can visit most of the places to visit in Agva, which is located between the two branches of the Göksu river, with a safari tour. Safari tours, where nature addicts discover Agva with motorized and non-motorized water vehicles, have been very popular in recent years.

Even though I took a short river cruise, I haven’t had the opportunity to join the safari tour yet. But I am thinking of joining soon and it will be an interesting experience for me no doubt.

Agva Kocadere River Activities
Agva Kocadere River Activities

6. Kilimli Hill and Kilimli Bay (Beach)

This natural wonder region, where you can see every shade of green, is like a piece of heaven. However, this area has recently been made for a fee.

Beach entrance fees are as follows:

Sile Municipality Kilimli Facilities Camping and Picnic Area Daily Fees

VehicleEntrance fee
Motorcycle15 ₺ (1.5€)
Car25 ₺ (2.5€)
Minibus40 ₺ (4.0€)
Truck-Bus50 ₺ (5.0€)
Picnic Area Entrance50 ₺(5.0€)
Tent Camping Area (Per Night)50 ₺(5.0€)
Car Accommodation (Per Night)50 ₺(5.0€)
Kilimli Bay Entrance and Accommodation Fees

There is also a paid camping area. However, this place is also very idle and a mediocre place. I say don’t expect too much. Not to mention the hygiene and cleanliness after seeing the uncollected garbage.

You do not pay a fee to swim at the Kilimli beach. Because, according to the Coastal Law, the seas and coasts are open to all citizens. You may be charged a fee if you only use sunbeds, umbrellas and parking.

Kilimli Koyu ve Falezleri arasında denizde yüzen insanlar.
Kilimli Bay

Since the other side of Kilimli Bay is rocky, it is not possible to swim in the sea, but you can enjoy the nature-sea-sun trio to the fullest on the Kilimli Hill Trekking Trail. Although the garbage that is not collected in this beautiful natural area is annoying, try to enjoy nature.

The magnificent view of the Black Sea from its Kilimli hill and the sound of the waves crashing on the cliffs on the shore will leave a therapeutic effect on your soul.

Kilimli Bay Maps: https://goo.gl/maps/2J2MtsKKuWR9f3Wf9

6. Kurfalli Village Natural Forest Trail

Agva Kurfalli village, which is located further inland from the sea and within the forest, offers natural trekking trails as well as camping activities with nature and accommodation in bungalow tree houses.

  • A
  • Agva Forest Lodge
  • River Fairy Village House
  • Aria Hotel
  • Forest House

Kurfalli Village map: https://goo.gl/maps/uWP1deJWDyaLh7Ax9

7. Hacilli Village and Waterfall Campground

Although it is one of the villages close to Agva, Hacilli Village is a village closer to Istanbul. The privilege of Hacilli village, which is 29 km from Agva and 110 km from Istanbul, is a waterfall located on Goksu (Koca creek).

Hacilli Waterfall, the closest waterfall to Istanbul, is one of the places worth seeing. Reaching the soothing sounds of waterfalls from the noise of Istanbul awaits us in Hacilli Village, which is only 1.5 hours away.

In the camping area around the waterfall, you can find a wonderful camping opportunity in touch with nature. It’s a good idea to take a look at this map that will help you reach the Hacilli Waterfall, one of the waterfalls of Istanbul: https://goo.gl/maps/fSeRVHHrrQhTpjiTA

Agva in Spring and Autumn

Although I am always in a dilemma about this issue, it seems more attractive to go to Agva in the spring. You witness the rebirth of nature with spring, with its sea, forest, butterfly, flower and birds after winter. Fragrant flowers, even the waves, hit the Agva beach again. It is as if he is massaging the deepest part of the human soul.

Although it is mostly preferred by nature lovers in the spring, it is the choice of lovers, spouses and those looking for romance in the autumn months after summer. Ağva opens its doors to camping lovers who seek adventure as well as lovers in the autumn season.

Agva, which is a bridge in the transition from the Black Sea to the Marmara, has the characteristic features of both the Black Sea region and the Marmara region. It fascinates those who come to it with its natural riches and unique sea view.

I can spend hours watching the natural vegetation of every color, but mostly almost every shade of green, and the beach beaten by the unruly waves of the Black Sea.

Hotel Recommendation and Accommodation Opportunities in Agva

In fact, this is a place that can be visited every season without limiting it to the season. Even if it does not offer a long vacation, I can recommend it for a few days’ short vacations to breathe. You can learn the current price information of Agva for hotels and hostels from the hotel reservation line.

There are many different possibilities for accommodation in Agva. You were able to pack your suitcases and get yourself out of Istanbul somehow. There are alternatives such as hotels, pensions, caravans and tent camps where you can stay. Besides the local visitors, mostly from Istanbul, a significant number of foreign tourists (mainly northern European and Arab countries) visit Agva.

Hotels to Stay in Agva
Hotels to Stay in Agva

The majority of touristic visits are those who come for a day trip. However, if you want to stay in Agva, there are accommodation opportunities that appeal to almost every taste.

Recommended Agva Hotels

  • Ağva Mi Norte Boutique & Exclusive Hotel
  • Ağva Masal Evi Butik Hotel (Ağva, Yakuplu St.. No:260)
  • Assorite La Villa Hotel (3 Yıldız – Fındık St, NO: 3)
  • Ağva Orman Evleri – Forest Lodge (3 yıldız)
  • Ağva Sahil Yıldızı Pansiyon (Ağva Merkez, Akin St, No:3)
  • Antik River House
  • Şelale Hotel
  • Piazza Hotel
  • Aria Hotel
  • Deniz Yıldızı Hotel
  • Tartaruga Hotel
  • Agva Rex Hotel
  • Sapphire Hotel
  • Elrio Motel
  • Treetops Park Hotel
  • The Swan Park Hotel
  • Güneş Hotel
  • Mad Sea Beach Hotel
  • Agva Daily Apart Hotel
  • Beyaz Ev Ağva Butik Otel (Agva, Yakuplu St. No:256)
  • Piccolo Mondo Hotel
  • Hotel Mandalin
  • Club Pedalisa
  • Other Agva Hotels: https://goo.gl/maps/DxPKBW9HEwh1nrwZ6

These are a few of the Agva hotels where you can stay. Since I live in Istanbul, I haven’t had the opportunity to stay in any of them yet. For this reason, I do not want to make a positive or negative comment about Agva hotels. In addition to bungalows, apartments, pensions and 3-star hotels, there are also places that provide special camping services for camping activities.

Camping and Nature Activities in Agva

You can carry out camping activities where you can integrate with nature by setting up your camping equipment and tent. There are areas suitable for Tent or Caravan camps in Agva. Some campsites;

  • Agva Green Camping (http://agvagreenparkcamping.com for reservation)
  • Seferogulları Camping (For reservation http://seferogullaricamping.com)
  • Gelesun Campland (https://facebook.com/agvakamp for reservation)
  • Woodwille Tree House and Covboy City
İstanbul Agva
Green Camping, Agva

Hiking Trails

There are nature trails called Hacilli, Kilimli and Kurfalli on 3 different routes close to Ağva, where we can do hiking and trekking as nature activities. I especially recommend you to walk on the Kurfallı hiking trail. The Kurfalli track, which is a candidate for Istanbul’s important trekking tracks, will give you a taste of nature and the sea.

Recently, orienteering, or direction-finding tracks, has started to attract a lot of attention. The mapped Kurfalli track where you can do this activity awaits you in Agva.

Canoe and Water Bike on the Stream in Ağva

There is not yet such a professional activity as water sports. Who can say no to an adventurous fun activity with motorized or non-motorized watercraft in the calm waters of Yesilcay and Goksu (Kocadere) creeks?

These activities organized with boats, sea bikes or canoes that you can rent will be enough to rest your soul. Remember, your body needs rest and renewal with natural therapies. Of course, carrying out these activities, which will contribute positively to the quality of life, in Agva, right next to Istanbul, adds a different color.

Beach Run

In addition to swimming and sunbathing on the beach of Agva, which is a Black Sea coast, there are areas reserved for playing Beach Run , Beach Volley and other beach games, which are played with great effort.

Places to swim in Agva - Agva Beach
Places to swim in Agva Beach

The sea, sand, sun and forest quartet will permeate you so much that you will never want to leave here. The chirping of the birds in the forest in your ears while your eyes are immersed in the water, and the scent of spring coming from flowers of thousands of colors in your nose.

Mushroom Expeditions

How would you like to discover world-famous mushroom species, especially in autumn, in the company of mushroom experts? In this activity, every minute of which is full of adventure and fun, we explore mushroom species. It was an interesting activity that I experienced for the first time.

Other Activities

Other activities that can be done during the Agva sightseeing tour are bird watching, fishing, Agva beach nights (moonlight dance party), sunset at the beach and safari tour in Göksu river.

Discover Agva Platform

While nature offers us all its blessings unconditionally, on the other hand, it is necessary to know and protect the value of these beauties. For this purpose, tourism-oriented companies and nature lovers operating in Agva about 10 years ago launched the “Sustainable Environment Platform” (http://exploreagva.com/en). We wholeheartedly support this struggle.

What to Eat in Agva?

What to eat and drink when you come to Agva, which has the characteristics of a Black Sea coastal town? For those who are wondering, this part of the article appeals to you.

It is possible to find very friendly and decent places by the beach or by the creek. Restaurants and cafes in accordance with the spirit of Ağva have menus specific to this region. This is entirely up to your preference.

While cafes and restaurants on the side of Kocadere are preferred more for breakfast, places close to the beach and overlooking the sea are preferred for lunch and dinner.

There will be a few suggestions for places in Agva that I can recommend both in terms of taste and scenery.

When it comes to the answer to the question of what to eat and drink in Agva, there are too many varieties to fit in one sentence. I have prepared a menu for you according to the meals.

Breakfast

Scattered Village Breakfast: Local jams, honey, tahini, butter, fried eggs, scrambled eggs, sausage, salami, cheese set, cheddar cheese, knitted cheese, chickpea cheese, feta cheese, cream cheese, green olives, black olives, tomato, cucumber, pepper, french fries, village bread, toast and unlimited brewed TEA.

Open Buffet Breakfast: Jam and marmalade varieties, cheese types, fries, tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, olives, scrambled eggs, boiled eggs and coffee, tea and fruit juices as drinks.

Lunch

In the restaurants on the beach side, there are mostly fish and grilled meat menus. On the other hand, ravioli, black sea pide, lahmacun and fast food restaurants are dominant in the food places in the center of Ağva.

Dinner

Dinner in Agva is more special than other meals. Because the most romantic meal, where the emotions come to the fore, and the filling of our stomach remains in the background, is undoubtedly dinner. You can choose to have your dinner at the venues on the Agva coast, or you can think of restaurants and cafes by the creek with a warm and friendly atmosphere.

There are fish restaurants for those who love seafood, where mainly Alacarte menus are served for dinner, as well as a few places that are assertive for Grilled Steak meat dishes. My suggestions for places to eat in Agva are as follows;

Agva Beach Restaurants

  • Ağva Liman Restaurant (reservation: agvalimanrestaurant.com)
  • Club Grand Becassier (reservation: clubgrandbecassier.com)
  • Günay Restaurant (reservation: agvagunayhotel.com)
  • Fener Fish Restaurant
  • Tokatlı’nin Yeri – Turkish Ravioli and Pancake (Manti) House
Fish Grill menus and seafood menu.
Agva Fish Restaurant

Agva Dere Side Cafe, Restaurant and Recreation Places

  • Aşıklar Cafe&Restaurant
  • Yakamoz Yalı Kafe & Restorant 
  • Meleksima Cafe
  • Ağva Gezi Kafe & Mola
  • Nehir Restaurant
  • Sardunya Restaurant
  • Antik River House Cafe&Restro
  • Ağva Küçük Ev (Small House) Restaurant
  • Gizli Bahçe (Secret Garden Resturant)
  • Ağva My Dream Cafe ve Restoran
  • Piccolo Mondo Ağva Otel & Restaurant

Barbecue Enjoyment in Agva

Recently, it has been forbidden to light barbecues in Istanbul randomly, wherever they want. This ban is also valid in Ağva. But that doesn’t stop you from barbecuing. Because the district municipality and private cafes and restaurants have grill and barbecue burning areas.

It is not difficult to find self-catering places by the creek. You can even prepare and bring your butcher’s ingredients yourself, or buy them from the venue.

..and Time to Leave 🙁

Whatever your purpose of escape from Istanbul at the end of the day, resting your head, seeing a few beautiful landscapes and spending time alone with nature for a few hours will have a relaxing effect on you, which will make your soul and body free of all negativities. When you return to Istanbul, you can be sure that you will make plans to visit Agva again as soon as possible.

The Tale of Agva Sightseeing Between Two Streams” adlı bu yazı en son 30.09.2021 tarihinde güncellenmiştir.

Tufan İNAN
Tufan İNAN
I've traveled to dozens of destinations in Turkey and the world, I'm traveling and I love to share the trip with my accounts via social media blogs with different trips continued to roam. Since I am working on tourism, I have the opportunity to visit and see many local and especially abroad locations. I write with pleasure on "Travel Site Bizyineyollarda" blog where I share my road adventures and travel experiences.
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