One of the first striking features of the Anzac area at Gallipoli is just how little there is of it. From the beach, where the first landings were made, to the heights of Chunuk Bair, which was only reached and briefly held for a few hours, it is less than 2 kilometres. The compact nature of the battlefield belies it complex geography however. Within a few tens of metres of the sea, the land breaks up into tangled slopes and gullies, slowing rising to the north east up to a series of ridges. After just a few weeks, stalemate had been reached, with the Anzacs clinging to a number of outposts on the cliffs, and the Turkish unable, despite flinging thousands of troops against the invaders, to dislodge them. In the summer, the area is almost always busy, with an increasing number of Turkish visitors. To the north of the area, bordering on Suvla, the routes taken by the August assaults are less frequented, but are also harder to access.
Touring this battlefield divides into two sections, a lower beach tour, and an upper heights tour.
The lower road, almost always approached from Gabe Tepe to the south, runs along the sea shore, reaching Hell’s Spit, Ari Burnu and North Beach. Continuing north takes the visitor to Embarkation Pier and number 2 Outpost, but unless you are travelling on to Suvla Bay you will need to turn round and retrace your route to reach the road to the uppper area. From the Anzac memorial area at North Beach there are astonishing views up to the Sphinx and Walker’s Ridge.
The upper road passes Lone Pine, Johnston’s Jolly, the cliff top posts and after the Turkish 75th Division memorial and the Nek, reaches Chunuk Bair. The hill is dominated by the huge statue of Mustapha Kemal, and there are spectacular views down to the sea and and northward to Suvla Bay.
There are various walking options, and these are detailed on the location pages. A few worthy of note are the walk up from the sea via Artillery Road, taking in Shell Green, to Lone Pine, and the descent from Johnston’s Jolly via 4th Battalion Parade Ground cemetery and into Shrapnel Valley.
There are no permanent visitors centres or facilities on the routes, but at Chunuk Bair there are usually booths selling ice cream and drinks. There are also temporary shops in the high season at the 75th Division memorial.
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