This study addresses Beysehir Lake Basin, which is the largest freshwater lake in Turkey. The aim of the study was to explore the knowledge, perceptions and behaviors of local communities regarding; the critical problems of the basin; technical and political situation of the water management in the basin; possible strategies ensuring positive change towards the sustainability of the basin; and the watershed management strategies which could contribute to success in This case. The participatory level of the local water users of the basin was also examined. The results revealed that local communities were aware of the basin's problems and contribution of the participatory approaches to watershed management. Also, collaboration between the public and public institutions was accepted as key to successful watershed management. The stakeholders, who considered that current water policies to solve the problems of the basin were ineffectual, relied on the local environmental groups more than central government and local authorities regarding their water policies.