Denitrification of drinking water was studied using various natural organic solid substrates (NOSS) such as poplar, hornbeam, pine shavings and wheat straw as a carbon source in a batch unit. The highest nitrate removal efficiency was observed with the wheat straw, so it was chosen as the carbon source for biodenitrification in an upflow laboratory reactor. In order to remove solid particles from the effluent water, a sand filter unit was placed after the denitrification reactor. The soluble DOC contents in the reactor affected the efficiency of nitrate elimination and nitrate concentration of the effluent water remained below acceptable values (50 mg/l NO3-). In order to remove colour, DOC and nitrate from the water, powdered activated carbon adsorption studies were performed in the batch unit.