Day Out In Kalkan – Second Attempt

‘So, dad, what do you think of Kalkan?’
‘I think the taxi drivers must be rich and their cars never get out of second gear!’

My dad used to be a taxi driver and his views of any place always seem to be formed around the taxi-driving experience. When he visited us last month, we’d hired a car and decided to visit Kalkan. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, as they say, and we should have remembered that my dad just doesn’t do hills – and Kalkan is built around a beautiful bay, on a hillside!

The Streets of Kalkan, Turkey

Kalkan is full of narrow, cobbled streets

Before this visit, we’d only ever visited Kalkan in winter and although the little town was in sleep mode and most of the shops and restaurants were closed, it was easy to see why so many people love to visit. Narrow, steep cobbled streets not unlike the alleyways of the Greek island of Meis are evidence of Kalkan’s Greek past and these alleys are now filled with shops, cafes and small pensions.

We were determined to return in season to view Kalkan in full swing as we had no idea what the atmosphere would be like there. Quaint? Quiet? Crowded? Would we even like it in season – we love our winters in this area of Turkey.

Restaurant, Kalkan Harbour, Turkey

One of the restaurants along the harbour

After much maneuvering of the car to inch it into the tiny car park (I impressed myself) we ambled downhill to the waterfront restaurants. People were milling around and we were indeed enjoying the atmosphere. We stopped for a drink at one of the restaurants and then it started to rain. Off my dad went – slowly – uphill, back to the car. He’d had his fill of Kalkan. And so we drove out of Kalkan, in first gear, and then all the way back to Fethiye, changing gears as we went along, of course. We went all the way to Kalkan for a glass of Diet Coke!

And so, what to take away from this? This was our second visit to Kalkan and it was as frustrating as the first because we’re still left with the feeling of needing to go back for more. We think we really like it. We will return again – alone. There’s no getting away from the fact that it’s hilly, but it’s those hills that add to the charm – but hills are not for everyone and my dad doesn’t do hills. He was pleased that the taxis were doing good business, though.

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  1. I can not laugh at your dad because I don’t do hills either. That is why I like someone else to drive when ever we go somewhere because I freak out at the thought of parking on some of these absurd hills in Turkey. Kalkan looks like a great place to visit though!

  2. @ Natalie: Some of the hills here are almost vertical aren’t they? We were in first gear and still did a couple of wheel spins going up the road to leave Kalkan. There were a lot of us in the car though! 🙂

  3. Driving with your dad sounds super fun! Postcard picture perfect.

  4. I am taking note of this beautiful spot for my next visit to Turkey; God I love this country! Too beautiful!

  5. I hate climbing hills as well, but sometimes it’s wonderful to have the views. Hilly places are often very beautiful!

  6. @ Belinda: My dad is a terrible backseat driver! But he did help me out of the space we were stuck in. 🙂

    @ Taste of Beirut: Hope you get to visit soon. Although, we would like to visit Beirut, too.

    @ Andrea: Hills are perfect – for a lot of people. They really add to the beauty of a place.

  7. Wow, what stunning photos, just returned from my second visit to Oludeniz, and was discussing with a girlfriend where we would like to visit next, this could well be the place 🙂

  8. Ha! Dads!
    My Dad is also a taxi driver. And a backseat driver. He does hills though. Probably why he won’t visit us in Singapore, where’s completely flat, although some larger-than-average speed bumps are called mountains!

  9. @ Tania: It’s a really pretty place. Only small but there’s lots to do in that area.

    @ The Dropout: Great aren’t they?! 🙂 I didn’t realise Singapore as so flat.

  10. The picture is fantastic!I’ve heard of Kalkan many times, but haven’t had a chance to visit there yet. Maybe I had better practice driving on hills before going there:)

  11. @ Zerrin: Thank you. It’s a very pretty place but yes, it is very hilly – you need a decent car. 🙂

  12. Been to Kalkan a few times over the years. It is very picturesque around the harbour and the roads leading back up the hill. Lots of good restaurants. But it is VERY hilly. Well worth a visit or an overnight stay. What did you think of the new road?

  13. @ MBS01: I think we could easily do a day or two there and sample some of the restaurants. We’ve used the new road a few times now and it’s so much better. The little road through Yeşilköy was a bit twisty turny for me. 🙂

  14. I’ve also heard from several of the expats here to visit Kalkan during the summer as an alternative to Bodrum and such. Worth adding to my travel list as well! =-)

  15. @ Joy: Worth going to because you can visit loads of other places nearby as well.

  16. The hilly surroundings makes it so beautiful and the views over the bay of course.

  17. Will Mccullough says

    Booked to visit Kalkan July 2016 Sold on trip advisor , so many positive comments Wife’s cousin just purchased an apartment in the old town of Kalkan Was planning on a cruise decided to keep the feet on dry land. Hope it live up to all the great comments

    Will & Pauline (Ireland )

    • Sure you’ll have a great time, Will & Pauline. Kalkan is very pretty. We’ve never stayed there overnight but would imagine the restaurants are lovely in the evening. Kalkan is also really well placed for exploring the surrounding areas and there really is loads to see. Enjoy. 🙂

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