North-east of Harput, 11 km from Elazığ.
From Elazığ follow Ahmet Kabaki Blv/Elazığ Yolu road northeast through Alayaprak to Göllübağ, turn left 1.3 km to the cave.
|Classification:||Karst cave Ice cave|
|Light:||Incandescent Electric Light System|
|Address:||Buzluk Mağarası, Unnamed Rd, Harput Mahallesi, 23350 Obuz/Elâzığ Merkez/Elazığ Tel: +90-, Fax: +90-|
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
|1990||cave renovated, trails and electric light refurbished.|
Buzluk Mağarası (Ice Cave) is a cave of the cold trap type. As Ice Cave is not really a good name and quite common it is often called Elâzığ Buzluk Mağarası. Cold air enters the cave during the winter because it is heavy. Once inside the cave it is trapped, and the cave stays cold all year. The locals tell that the ice forms during the summer, not during the winter. This is rather characteristic, as during winter all cracks and the water on the surface are frozen. Water enters the cave during spring, when the snow melts and the ice begins to accumulate. The cave is a single huge chamber with a length of 110 m and a width of 50 m.
The cave was and is of great economic importance to the locals. In ancient times, locals earned money by digging ice in June, July and August and selling it in Harput. They transported the ice on the back of animals. Later a road to the ice cave was built and trails constructed for easier access. This is obviously not relevant any more with the existence of refrigerators.
Today the cave is a popular tourist site, mostly for local tourists. The cave is located inside a hill which offers a great view of the deep blue beauty of Keban Dam Lake. The Pertek District is also exceptionally green for the semi-arid east of Turkey. And of course there is a funny legend about the cave:
Once a woman fell into the cave and then her body was recovered from the Murat River, which is also within the borders of Elazığ. It is also said that Turkey's finest marble was found in the cave.
But the funniest legend is found on modern days websites.
...ice naturally forms in the cave in hot summer months. Ice cannot form in the winter months. Therefore, the cave is hot in winters and cold in summers as a result of underground air flow. There are very few such caves in the world.
That's obvious nonsense, to get the temperature take a thermometer, do not derive it from things you do not understand. Also they tell about a doline which is 110 m long and 50 m wide, which is actually not there. This doline is a feature of a different Ice Cave.