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Uludag

Uludag Ski Resort Guide

Uludag, Turkey

Rated: 3/5 (from 5 ratings)

Ski Area Highlights
Recommended ForIntermediates, Beginners, Snowboarders, Snowfall and Apres-Ski!
Highest Lift2,322m
Resort Height1,767m
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Uludag

Pronounced oo-la-dar, the biggest resort in Turkey is close to the sea and historic sites and is surrounded by a 600-year-old national forest. High-value skiing with the option of heli-skiing on the Zivre Peak (2543 M ).

Summary

The Turkish ski resort of Uludag is at an altitude of 1,767m.

Uludag has direct access to 25 marked pistes, served by a total of 15 ski lifts.

The ski resort itself is at 1,767m, so skiing or boarding back to the resort is usually possible. With ski lifts as high as 2,322m, snow cover is generally reliable.

Snow and Weather

When will it snow in Uludag?

The next notable snow forecast is 2cm, expected on 1 November.

See our long-range Snow Forecast for the latest update, or   Join our Snow Mail Here

Snow this week

Snow Forecast by day for Uludag
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
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Ski Area Stats

Uludag Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
 1 
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
 6 
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
 8 
Green Pistes
Beginner Runs
10
Cross Country
Total Length
20km
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts
15

Altitudes

Uludag Ski Area Heights

Lift Heights and Resort Altitude
Highest Lift2,322m
Lowest Piste1,767m
Resort Altitude (Uludag)1,767m
Max Vertical555m

Ratings & Suitability

Ratings for Uludag
Beginners
Snowboarding
Snow
Apres-Ski

Uludag Overview

Uludag (pronounced oo-la-dar and meaning 'Great Mountain') has been Turkey's leading ski resort since the sport began in this country and although it's leading status is now under threat in some respects, it is likely to remain the country's most cosmopolitan winter destination for the forseeable future. Dubbed the Aspen or St Moritz of Turkey it's a picturesque resort of lightly coloured Alpine chalet style buildings, surrounded by the pretty, woodland slopes of a National Park. The woodland has a better mix of trees than in most ski areas - chestnuts, pines, oaks and beech rub branches with one another at Uludag. The national park location has meant strict planning and development controls, which has generally been for the good of the resort over the years. The dozen or so hotels that make up Uludag are either slopeside or just over the road from the lifts.

The resort began in the 1950s with a couple of hotels after previously being used as a winter training area for the Turkish armed forces as long ago as the 1930s. The first lift opened in 1959. There are (long standing) plans to add at least half a dozen more new hotels and a similar number of lifts. It's proximity to Istanbul to the North West and Turkish capital Ankara to the west helped to ensure its rapid success.

Many well-heeled Turks arrive in their droves at the weekend, but the resort is usually quiet midweek, outside holiday periods. The busiest time is mid-February, with Easter week quieter than most Northern Hemisphere ski areas, thanks to the fact that Islam and not Christianity is the dominant religion here. Men apparently outnumber female visitors even more heavily than at most ski areas too. Prices are high by Turkish standards but for many international guests the value factor remains very good overall. Service standards are extremely high, the locals are genuinely friendly and English is more widely spoken here than at any other Turkish ski centre.

Uludag is arguably more famous for its celebrity-spotting than for its skiing. As with Aspen, Italy's Cortina and St Moritz, more visitors come for the shopping, the nightlife or just to 'see and be seen' than for the snow sports. The resort doesn't do itself any favours with its mountain experience either, with the 13 lifts owned by nine separate companies who neither operate a joint lift ticket nor, apparently, do much to ensure they work in cooperation with one another.

So it is that two other Turkish resorts, nearby Kartalkaya and over in the East of Turkey, Palandoken, have managed to challenge Uludag's status - by offering consolidated, modern and well organised lift networks.

Some Brits do return however, and Dutch, Germans and increasingly Russians make up the normal international clientele here, although that remains less than 5% of the total. Uludag is reportedly fighting back against its new competitors with new lifts planned as well as, equally importantly, a real multi-lift ticket to enjoy the existing ones as well as the new ones. Besides, the resort's popularity isn't suffering with long time Uludag fans reporting that it gets ever more crowded.

Uludag stands at around 1800m (aprox 6000 ft) above sea level, with the ancient city of Bursa below. Bursa, about 5000 years old, was once capital f the Ottoman Empire and has been ruled by Alexander The Great. Today the city has a population of around a million and is linked to the resort by road or cable car. Its presence gives an added dimension to a destination resort holiday in Uludag, with the shopping, sightseeing, dining and other leisure experiences it brings. Bursa has been famed for its thermal springs and resulting curative baths since pre-Roman times.

Skiing

Uludag's ski slopes fan out in a horseshoe around the resort, with most of the hotels either slopeside or very close to the slopes and most owning their own lifts. Whilst this is convenient initially for an individual hotel's guest, who'll generally find use of that hotel's lift is included in their holiday price; it rapidly becomes less so once they try to move around and find they have to stop and buy a ticket with their millions of Turkish lira at virtually every lift. Collective lift tickets have existed in the past apparently, and may do again - a new computerised system ticketing system for the whole resort had reportedly been purchased at the time of writing, but agreement had not been reached on its installation and use.

Most of the lifts are T bars, the remainder elderly single or double chairs. If you're prepared to put up with the lifts (Most of which close for lunch at 1pm sharp, in the case of the T Bars regardless of whether people are riding up at the time, reportedly) and the ticket system then you are in for a good skiing experience, probably! Although largely promoted as a place for beginners and intermediates, more advanced skiers have raved about the 'huge safe bowls' of powder snow off piste between the runs which can be enjoyed 'in peace' during the quiet midweek period.

The off piste terrain, especially good in the Kusaklikaya sector, is little used by the natives but relatively safe from avalanches, there being no Alpine style steeps or overhangs above the slopes. Apart from the lift served runs there's the chance to take a budget priced helicopter to the summit of Mount Olympus/Zivre (2543m/about 8400 feet) to ski one of the most challenging runs; or a bus to the Volfram mine from which you can ski back to the resort. It's possible to take a long hike to the summit of Zivre if the helicopter service is unavailable.

The highest point of the lifts is reached by a single chair at 2235m. From here on a good day there are views over the rolling hills down to the sea of Murmara. For intermediate skiers the Ulukardesler, Ergun and Fatin lifts give access to some of the main wide sunny blue and reds slopes leading back down to the villase. The Fatin run often sports a mogul/bumps field.

Beginners will find wide nursery slopes carved through the trees above the resort, and above every hotel. To the right of the main snowbowl the Fahri, Beceren and Kervansary lifts all access the best of the nursery terrain. Some of the lifts have music playing add to the party atmsphere.

The ski school is particularly good midweek when clients are few and teachers especially keen and there are numerous mountain huts and restaurants. Night skiing is also available and in any case the lifts tend to stay open until around 8pm from February on. Snow cover is generally good with largely north facing, if sunny, slopes.

There are half a dozen cross country trails around the resort but there is apparently a serious danger of bear or wolf attack to those who venture too far away into the untouched national forest!

Uludag offers good sking, particularly, for Intermediate and Beginner skiers.

Snowboarding

Boarding is not a major sport at Uludag. The extensive areas of off-piste powder and the good selection of chairs are an asset, against the fact that the surface lifts are all drags. Low cost heli-boarding and abundant night life are also plus points.

Location and Map

Where is Uludag?

This ski resort is in Ereğli, Zonguldak, Turkey.

Map

Tap Show Map in Full Screen for Full-Screen, or see J2Ski's Resort map, showing Hotels and Ski Shops.

How to get there

Infrastructure

Ski Lift Capacity

The 15 ski lifts are able to uplift 8,470 skiers and snowboarders every hour.

Season Dates

When is Uludag open?

We don't currently have confirmed season dates, but hope to soon.

Usual opening is mid December, and usual closing is Mid April.

NOTE:- Ski area, lift and piste opening is subject to Current Snow Conditions.

COVID-19 / Coronavirus

We don't yet have specific details of the COVID-19 precautions being taken in Uludag, but they are likely to include most of the following :-

  • Face masks required on lifts, and in shops.
  • Social distancing in public areas.
  • Reduced lift capacity.
  • Extensive disinfection / sanitization.

French Ski Resort COVID-19 Measures describes further measures that may also be applied.

Visit the Tourist Office Website for the latest.

Aprés Ski

Aprés-ski is where Turkey, and Uludag in particular, excel. The limited winter population have a choice of dozens or bars and seven night clubs, albeit hotel based. The latter tend to 'come to life' around midnight and stay busy until 4 or 5 am. The Beceren café at the base of the slopes is a favourite haunt for party animals, who although too concerned with saving their energies for the evening activities to venture on to the slopes, may still expend some effort in changing outfits several times a day. There is also a casino for those tempted to gamble.

Mulled wine (Sharap in Turkish) is popular, as is 'Efes' beer, or you might want to embrace the national Turkish spirit, it is aniseed based and called Raki.

Uludag