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15 Best Things to do in Fethiye Turkey

Located in the Mugla province of the famous Aegean region, Fethiye is one of the major tourist attractions in the entire country of the Republic of Turkey. Since it is located in the Turkish Riviera region, it attracts most tourists from all across the world compared to other hotspots in the country.

Not only it's geographically ethereal, but also Fethiye is the gateway to Telmessos ancient city. On one side, you can explore the ancient ruins and learn more about Turkish history. On the other hand, the urban part of Fethiye has many cultural attractions, including a front seat view of the sea and the sandy beach. All in all, Fethiye is a place that will give you innumerable chances to make some unforgettable memories and have the best fun of your life.

If you are planning a visit to Turkey and are confused about whether to include Fethiye in the itinerary, we would recommend you not to decide in haste. In the following article, we will provide you with a consolidated list of the things you can do in Fethiye with the hope of convincing you for a must-visit.

Visiting the ancient city of Kaunos

As we have previously said, Fethiye is full of histories, starting the itinerary with a historical visit wouldn’t be a bad idea. We have kept the tour to the ancient city of Kaunos at first because this is one of the best places in the entire city. It’s known for the majestic ruins of temples and a theatre. Along with these structures, you will find several grey stone tombs in ruins. These tombs have been carved in temples at the exterior front, making it nothing less than picturesque. Just a little lower, you can hear the rustling sound of the flowing Dalyanriver.

Relaxing in the Iztuzu Beach

Fethiye has several beaches where you can spend your leisure time. But, the Iztuzubeach is more of exploration and relaxation at the same time. Located in the Dalyan village, Iztuzu is famous for the paramount view it offers of the waterfront. On one side, you will find a freshwater lake which is quite huge, while on the other side, the TurquoiseSea is bordering the beach. Besides walking on the white sandy beach and taking a dip in the shallow seawater, you can explore the turtle rehabilitation centre located close by. As Iztuzu beach is the nesting ground of the Loggerhead turtles, high chances are there to encounter some of them roaming around the beach.

Take a swim in the Õlüdeniz Blue Lagoon.

Located at a distance of twenty minutes from the main city of Fethiye, the Õlüdeniz or the Turkish Blue Lagoon is said to a nothing less than a land of paradise. Overlooking the clear turquoise blue seawater is a long stretch of white sand that heightens the ethereal beauty of the place. Huge, dense pine forest stands tall, guarding the shoreline and creating a marvellous picturesque. Swimming and sunbathing are the two most popular water activities in the BlueLagoon area. Apart from these, one can also enjoy paragliding while having a panoramic view of the Lagoon waters and the surrounding vegetation cover.

Explore the Butterfly Valley

One of the hidden secrets of the Fethiye city is the Butterfly Valley, despite the place being located on the outskirt. As there are no road transports available, you will have to either take a boat from Õlüdeniz or hike along the stiff mountain slopes from the FaralyaVillage. The butterflyvalley has received its name after the Jersey Tiger Butterfly- a native species found in abundance here.

Tour the Tomb of Amyntas

If you want to unravel the untold stories about Turkish history, you better start with the TombofAmyntas. It’s a rock carving tomb present on a stiff mountain in the Southern Hills of Fethiye. For reaching the main rock tomb, you will need to climb up the stairs from the foothill of the mountains. Historians believe that it was formed around the 4th Century BCE from the carvings and the architecture style. At the front face, you will see the Lonian columns acting as a foothold. These columns have been carved from solid rocks, which is why it's still in an intact position. Inside the burial house, you will find several flat-surfaced rock tombs dedicated to Amyntas.

Learn history from Fethiye Museum

Archaeologically, Fethiye is one of the richest cities in Turkey, all thanks to the historic ruins, age-old buildings and tombs. Since Turkey has witnessed the rise and fall of several empires, no other place will be as knowledgeable as the Fethiye Museum. From the outsides, it looks like an old building with faded red bricks forming the outer walls. Here, you can go through innumerable artefacts to know more about different historical eras like the Bronze Age, Romans, and the Byzantine empire. Starting from minted coins from different empires to figurines, amulets, and potteries, many things will leave you completely spell bounded and mesmerized.

Experience chills from the Kayaköy ghost town

During the early years, the town of Kayaköy was a bustling area, thanks to the Greek population that inhabited this town. Houses and buildings were built along the slopes of the mountain, which further escalated the beauty and pristine nature of the town. After all the Greeks were relocated to their native country, Kayaköy hasn’t seen any more settlements. Now, it's similar to a ghost town, with deserted house ruins, broken roads, and dying architecture. Despite the eeriness that prevails in the air, exploring the deserted town is nothing less than a thrilling experience.

Visit the Saklikent National Park

If you are willing to venture into the rockylandofFethiye, no other place will be as tempting as the Saklikent National Park. It is situated in the SaklikentCanyon, which is the most serene place in Turkey. With a depth of 300 meters, the canyon stretches up to a length of eighteen kilometres and has a narrow width of two meters. Flowing through the canyon is the Karaçaydistributary of the famous Esen river. You can walk along the mountainsides on the wooden pathways while experiencing the serenity of several waterfalls and the caves present.

Roam around the Tlos Ruins

If you have included the Saklikent Canyon in your itinerary list, a visit to the TlosRuins is a must. Even though it's considered a part of the Lycian empire, historians have traced its roots back to about 4000 years back. Several ruins are there in Tlos, scattered across the entire town. The most thrilling fact about Tlos ruins is that all of them don’t belong to the same era. Rather, you will see ruins from different eras placed together. Hence, you will have some fun in identifying which ruin is from what era. Here, you can find the TombofBellerophon- the largest and the most magnificent ruin in the entire Tlos.

Explore the Old Town

The FethiyeOldTown or the Paspaturis one of the most amazing places to visit. Here, you can experience both the cultural vitality and the historic enigma like nowhere else. The alleys are quite narrow, resembling the old architecture of Fethiye. You will see several shops in the town's main market and small mills placed there for energy production. Almost half of the wide streets have shades in the form of vine mantles covering the pergolas and the colour awnings, which create a remarkable sight. Pay a visit to EskiCami, or the Old Mosque dated back to the 18th century. To the west of the Old Town is the HellenisticTheater that belongs to the Telmessos period.

Unravel the tales of Lycian history

Fethiye is known for the rich tales of Lycian history, which will keep you on your toes throughout your stay in the city. Several spots are there that once belonged to the Lycian empire, and hence, discovering these places is mandatory. You can start with Kadyanda- perched on the hilltop and was once a populous town now, though you will find the ruins dating back to 5000 years ago. For unearthing the historical treasures of Fethiye, you can embark on a trekking journey along the LyciaWay.

Pay tribute to the deities in Letoön.

Another amazing place to visit in Fethiye is the Letoön- the house of Goddess Leto. According to Greek mythology, it is said that Leto was once banished from Olympus by Hera, wife of Zeus. After she was banished, it is believed she came here to live in this area and hence the name Letoön. Three temple ruins are there, one belonging to Leto herself. The other two are for her children from Zeus- Artemis and Apollo.

Revel in the glory of Xanthos

Even though Xanthos is now in ruins, the picturesque view of the terraced mountain slope with houses and buildings scattered around the greenery is eye-catching and quite refreshing also. Xanthos is mainly famous for the top three buildings from the ancient Lycian time- the Theater, the Acropolis, and the Agora. A little left to the humongous Roman Theater is the remnants of the NereidMonument. On the right side, you will find the HellenisticCityGate.

Spend some leisure time at Patara

If you want to spend some leisure time, Patarais the most suitable choice in the entire city of Fethiye. It is the longest beach in the entire country, ad that's why you will always find the place crowded with flocks of tourists. Be it swimming or sunbathing, Patara will offer myriad exciting activities that will make your day. A little away from the beach is the old town of Patara which now is in ruins. There is a triple-arched humongous gate hailing from the Roman era, followed by the collonaded street, a colossal bathing complex, and numerous tombs.

Explore the Fethiye markets

Lastly, to have an exciting end to your tour, visiting the Fethiyemarkets will be the best option. The open market is the home to several shops selling souvenirs, artefacts, purses, bags, apparels, etc. Walking down the awning covered lanes and listening to the hawkers urging people to buy is a unique experience.

Wrapping up!

Fethiye might be a small city as compared to other establishments in Turkey. But it houses some of the best sites for exploration and discovery that you shouldn't miss. Since the town was the main centre of the Lycian empire, several places will speak about the historic and courageous Lycian tales. So, make sure you plan the itinerary carefully because Fethiye is a place of enigma and exhilaration.