Turkey: relaxing beach holidays with culture, history and nature
Seaside resort:
Turkey
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Turkey in brief

 

Visit Turkey for amazing white sand beaches, tasty meze, loggerhead turtles, beautiful architecture, water sports and all kinds of nightlife.

Location:

South-east Europe/western Asia

Nearest airport:

Istanbul, Milas-Bodrum, Dalaman and Antalya

Key resorts & areas:

Cesme, Alacati, Kusadasi, Bodrum, Marmaris, Icmeler, Olu Deniz, Fethiye, Patara, Antalya, Alanya

Major sights & activities:

Ephesus, Castle of St Peter, Lycian tombs, scuba diving, windsurfing, kitesurfing

Best time to go

Mid-May to September

Did you know?

Turkey has 8,000 km of coastline, including 235 km of beaches. The most highly regarded of these is the 12 km Patara Beach on the Mediterranean coast.

 

Beach holidays in Turkey

 

Straddling south-east Europe and western Asia, Turkey is in a prime position to offer unique beach holidays complete with gorgeous natural scenery, great food, lots of history and a fascinating culture.

Turkey’s beach destinations are largely located on its Aegean and Mediterranean coasts, although there are also a few resorts on the Black Sea to the north of the country.

These are the main destinations to consider for beach breaks to Turkey:

 

Aegean coast

Turkey’s picturesque Aegean coast has some of the country’s most popular beach destinations, including:

  • Cesme - Located near the Greek island of Chios, the Cesme peninsula in western Turkey is home to several towns and beaches that make a great beach holiday setting. The town of Cesme is a bustling resort with a fortress, museum and great weekend markets. The main beaches are located to the south and in Ilica.
  • Alacati - Situated close to Cesme, Alacati is a less busy location complete with traditional architecture, food festivals and some beautiful sand to relax on. 
  • Kusadasi - Kusadasi is a port town located close to the biblical site of Ephesus. There are around 6 beaches in the vicinity, along with some great water sports opportunities.
  • Bodrum - Bodrum is a highly popular holiday destination with whitewashed buildings, a castle, Ottoman mosques, ruins and a laidback atmosphere. The beaches are all a bus ride away at Gumbet and Bitez.
  • Marmaris - This picturesque harbour town is a lively resort perfect for those seeking sunbathing by day and partying by night. Apart from its beaches, Marmaris’s other attractions include diving, gulet cruises and day trips to nearby Rhodes.
  • Icmeler - Located close to Marmaris, Icmeler is a quieter resort with a good beach and lovely views.
  • Datca - Located a little further along the coast from Marmaris, Datca is an unspoilt beach holiday destination ideal for anyone wanting to truly relax. Aktur and Kargi offer some excellent beaches.

 

Mediterranean coast

Turkey’s Mediterranean coast can be roughly defined as the ‘bulge’ that juts out into the sea between Rhodes and Antalya. Top destinations include:

  • Olu Deniz - Olu Deniz is a popular resort perfect for those seeking little more than sun, sand and sea. The nearby mountains offer sporting opportunities away from the beach, however - paragliding is highly popular here. The long distance Lycian Way footpath also begins in Olu Deniz.
  • Fethiye - This is a beautiful resort with a natural harbour and the remains of an ancient city, Telmessos. Beaches include Aksazlar, Samanlik, Kuleli and Boncuklu. 
  • Patara - This is arguably the finest beach in Turkey. Measuring 12 km long and consisting of gorgeous white sand, Patara Beach has long been a hotspot for sun-seekers. The beach is also part of a national park that is home to the loggerhead (caretta caretta) turtle.

 

Turquoise Coast

Also known as the Turkish Riviera, the Turquoise Coast is the southwestern part of the country’s coast running west from Antalya and is a particularly beautiful part of the world. Highlights include:

  • Antalya - Antalya is a historic city perfect for combining sunbathing with culture. The main beach is Konyaalti to the west, with other beaches located further afield. Antalya’s other attractions are the Kaleici old town and its various museums.
  • Alanya - Alanya is a lively resort with a buzzing nightlife. The main beaches here include Cleopatra and Portakal, each of which have a coveted Blue Flag.
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by Explico.biz