The former fishing village of Kalkan is today a lively upmarket resort, villas cleverly perched on the mountainside ensuring every villa has a sea view. A ninety-minute drive from Dalaman airport, discerning holidaymakers can't get enough of this quaint town. The pretty cobbled streets come alive at night, with rooftop restaurants enjoying the romantic coastal views.
Beaches in Kalkan
For one, it’s the perfect haven for those who want to get away from it all and enjoy the beautiful azure blue sea and breath-taking beaches. Just a few miles west of Kalkan sits Patara Beach, boasting twelve kilometres of silky sand; not to mention the stunning Lycian ruins siting just behind the beach. Then there's pebbly Kalkan Beach which suits families with young children to a tee. The much photographed Kaputas Beach is formed by a gorge that opens to the sea. Kaputas is incredibly popular with the locals, and often you’ll see the Gulet’s and yachts making the most of turquoise waters.
And if you don’t like brushing sand off of your skin, or if you want a little more luxury, Kalkan has several beach clubs, cut into the rocks of the coast. Each one offers sunbeds, watersports, a restaurant and drinks service.
History and architecture
Its appeal doesn't end there, famous for its whitewashed houses with bougainvillaea draping the walls, holidaymakers will step back in time to the 1920s where Greek influences reigned supreme in both history and majestic architecture.
The town also has the regal Taurus Mountains as a backdrop (which you can explore by walking the historic Lycian Way walking track), alongside an exquisite harbour full of Turkish wooden gulets (boats), and a beautiful and historic old town which extends back from the sea.
Towns and villages
Between the soaring landscapes lies the land of the Lycians (a mysterious civilisation with ruins scattered along this coast). The architecture is mesmerising and can be experienced at many sites within a short drive of Kalkan. Sites such as Xanthos, Patara, Tlos and Letoon are just a few to mention.There are places of history which St Nicholas is said to have served as Bishop (Myra) and been born in Patara. If you’re a keen walker the Lycian way is a marked walking route covering over 500km; a word to the wise - the route is rather tricky especially with the uneven surfaces. The route is best tackled in cooler months.
Kalkan undoubtedly ticks off a lot of boxes. The cobbled streets perfectly align with the towns laid-back atmosphere. So, if there was ever a time to visit Kalkan it would be now – while it’s still relatively undiscovered.
Kalkan for foodies
Kalkan's topography has given restaurateurs ample space to start some of the most remarkable eateries. Many located on roof terraces are the most sought-after simply because of the unrivalled Mediterranean views.
Mezes remain the core of Turkish cookery and an excellent option for vegetarian holidaymakers - and that's all before the main course arrives. The Turks are passionate about their food; they celebrate breakfast with a spread that puts the continental breakfast to shame and have perfected the gözleme – a thin pancake usually with a savoury filling.
When in Turkey, you'll never be far away from tea. Served in a tulip tea glass, most leaf tea is home produced. The regular kind is served black and most locals will drink it with a cube of sugar. If that’s not to your taste ask to try the sage, apple or rosehip varieties. Another drink you may be offered is a salty yoghurt drink, called Ayran, said to help rehydrate you in the summer heat.
If you’d prefer something alcoholic, try a refreshing locally produced Efes, Turkey’s most popular beer. If you’re eating fish, Raki is the traditional accompaniment. This aniseed liquor magically turns white on the addition of water, giving it the apt nickname of ‘Lion’s Milk’. In recent years the local wines have become quite palatable, and well worth trying.
With a diverse range of Kalkan holiday villas on offer, you can enjoy the region in a totally authentic manner.
If you want more information, check the Kalkan Travel Guide in our blog.