There’s only so much you can do on one holiday in Fethiye so we’ve tried to keep this list of must-sees short. All recommendations are what we love about this area and what we would like to recommend to you if it’s your first visit to the Fethiye area of Turkey.
Recommendations are in no particular order and we’ve assumed visits to Fethiye will be in summer…otherwise, we would have a lot more trekking suggestions on this list. Should you find yourself here in the colder months, we’ve got a few tips for surviving Fethiye in winter. Also, this isn’t a page of food & drink – for ideas on filling your stomach and quenching your thirst while you are in Fethiye, see our page about Eating & Drinking In Fethiye.
Fethiye Old Town
Fethiye Rock Tombs
A bit of a pull, but climb up to the main Lycian rock tombs in Fethiye – the tomb of Amyntas – and take in the amazing views of Fethiye marina and the whole of the bay. You can always reward yourself with an icy cold Efes Pilsen when you come back down into Fethiye.
Fethiye Boat Trips
There’s not just the 12 Island Boat trip that you might have heard about – although they are certainly amazing value for money (prices change throughout the season but are very reasonable) – 8 hours, about 5 swim stops and your lunch included. If you don’t like the idea of a big boat, loads of other people and music, then book a private boat trip from Fethiye or you can also go with the Çalış Boat Co-op. Those could be around £150 for the boat for the day and they usually visit the quieter bays of Fethiye. For a public boat trip from Fethiye our personal favourite for a great value day out is the Sunday Market boat trip to Göcek. If all day on a boat sounds a bit too much, many of the boats now do half day trips and also sunset trips.
Yes, Fethiye has beaches! Take the Karagözler dolmuş to any of the bays in Fethiye. Aksazlar Bay (near Club Letoonia Fethiye), Samanlık Bays, Kuleli, Boncuklu. If it’s not too hot, you pass all of these bays on the Fethiye Peninsula trek. Sundays will be very busy with Turkish families.
Great if you’re self-catering rather than staying in one of the many hotels in Fethiye. Marvel at the array of fresh fruit and veg on Fethiye Market before strolling around the hundreds of fake designer clothes, shoes, sunglasses stalls. Can’t say we ever buy any of the fake stuff but it’s worth a wander around. Oh, and you should try Gözleme – A Turkish flatbread. (The market is every Tuesday in Fethiye, every Sunday in Çalış and if it’s just the foods you’re after, there’s a pleasant, low key farmers’ Friday market on the site of the Tuesday market. Hisarönü market is every Monday, and Çiftlik Market, every Thursday and if you’re up in Üzümlü, your market day is Friday.)
No holiday to Fethiye, Turkey is complete without a day on the beach at Ölüdeniz; one of the most photographed beaches in the world. Belcekiz Beach has the crashing waves or you can swim in the lagoon. The dolmuş from Fethiye will take you down to the private beaches of the lagoon for free if you ask the driver. We normally go to Sea Horse Beach. (Dolmuşes leave the dolmuş station in Fethiye every few minutes. In high season, the last one back to Fethiye is around 2am. Check with the driver. Journey time from Fethiye – about 45 mins)
Kayaköy has many ruins left from the population exchange between Turkey and Greece in 1923. Beautiful countryside, Turkish village life and a sad reminder of the past. Don’t leave Kaya without going to Cin Bal restaurant where you barbecue your own food. (The dolmuş to Kaya from Fethiye is every hour on the hour from the dolmuş station. Every half an hour in high season. The last dolmuş back to Fethiye is around 8pm in low season and 10pm in high season so check with the driver if you don’t want to end up in a taxi. Journey time from Fethiye – about 40 mins) Or you can walk to Kayaköy from Fethiye if you feel like it!
If you’re in the Fethiye area during football season (Aug/Sept to Apr/May) and Fethiyespor happen to be playing at home, you could always go along to give them your support – it’s very cheap compared to football prices you might be used to in the UK or elsewhere. If you’ve never been before and don’t know what to expect, neither did we before we first went – it’s an experience, and it’s good fun. We have a dedicated page on the blog which is all about Fethiyespor, and has links to upcoming Fethiyespor fixtures and the current Fethiyespor league table too.
If you still need convincing after reading that, try our 15 fantastic reasons to support Fethiyespor. And if you’re already a well-seasoned football fan and you want to keep up to date with all the goings on at Fethiyespor, then give the Fethiye Spor 1933 Facebook page a ‘Like’ too. No worries if you don’t know Turkish; it’s very visual, there are English updates on there, too…and there’s always Google Translate should you get really curious.
Amazing, breathtaking. Yes, lots of tourists go there in high season but places become famous for a reason. We never get bored of Saklıkent Gorge. If you’re here early in the season, go on any day except Sunday and it should be free from crowds. You have the gushing rapids and colossal cliff faces to yourself. Eat at the fabulous Kayıp Cennet Restaurant. (The usual scenario – dolmuşes leave the dolmuş station for Saklıkent on a regular basis. If you’re in a car, take the D400 towards Antalya and it’s signposted from here. Journey time from Fethiye – about 50 mins).
The Fethiye Fountains
Each evening, throughout the summer season and on special occasions throughout the year, too, the fountains of Uğur Mumcu Park (just behind the new town square dance to music and light up the area in flashes of colour. You can see some more of the fountains in our Fethiye fountains photo post. Times for the fountain shows are posted around the park.
Çalış Beach Sunset
Whatever your views on Çalış Beach, there is no denying that this little area of Southwest Turkey has one of the most beautiful sunsets in the world. If beach areas like Çalış are just not your thing, you really ought to make the effort to go down there if only just to watch the sun go down. Our photo archives are packed with Çalış sunset photos. No two are the same. Taking the Fethiye to Çalış water taxi at sunset is also a treat for photographers – and, of course, you can go across in the daytime and evenings, too. (Times vary throughout the season and are posted on the ticket offices.)
Very underrated as far as we are concerned. We’ve seen many ruins in Turkey and the mountainous Tlos near Fethiye is yet to be beaten for us. Amazing views over the Xanthos Valley. Lycian and Roman ruins intermingled with mountain village life. No visit to Tlos is complete without stopping in for a drink or a bite to eat at the Original Yaka Park (Hire a car / moped and you can go to Saklikent and Tlos in one day. Tlos is worth 2 or 3 hours of your time. Journey time from Fethiye – about 50 mins).
And once you’ve explored the fabulous Tlos ruins in their beautiful setting, a visit to Fethiye Museum will show you some of the finds from the Roman statues that were recently unearthed there. The museum is only small but it’s well worth an hour or two of your time – especially if it’s raining.
Stunning scenery and away from the crowds of Ölüdeniz if you’re looking for peace and quiet. Really calm sea, perfect for swimming. A couple of small beach bars and sun loungers on the beach. (The kaya dolmuş goes all the way to Gemiler Bay every couple of hours or so in high season. If not, get off the dolmuş as far as the last stop and walk down the hill to the bay – about 1 hour. Don’t forget, you’ll have to walk back up later on!)
This is the mountain from where you soar should you choose to do the paragliding in Ölüdeniz. If paragliding is not your thing, you can drive up to the top (or take a dolmuş from Ölüdeniz and Hisarönü in summer) and enjoy the views from Zirve Cafe. Click here photos and write up about our drive to the top of Babadağ.
(Most of the suggestions above are outdoor activities. However, sometimes, the heavens do open in Fethiye. If this happens to you whilst you’re in the area, check out our top tips for what to do in Fethiye in the rain.)
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