All about Fethiye: Why Fethiye is more than a small port town

Fethiye is known as a launching point for many group and private gulet cruises headed either east or west along the Mediterranean coast. However, Fethiye is a destination in itself and has much to offer those looking for a spot rich in culture, history, and natural beauty. It is likely that your holiday on the southern coast of Turkey will probably include a stop to the port town of Fethiye. Be sure to spend a few days exploring all that Fethiye has to offer.

Old Town & Local Markets

Full of shaded bars, restaurants, and shops, the old town in Fethiye is the perfect setting for a pleasant stroll to enjoy beverage and purchase local souvenirs. Shops are colorful and stocked with home goods and jewelry known for intricate patterns and beautifully colored designs. There are plenty of places to stop for tea or a cold beer and endless people watching.

Local markets take place on Tuesdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays and are a great way to wander and soak in Turkish culture. The Tuesday market is a great opportunity to find affordable clothing and electronics. Markets on the remaining days are known for brightly colored produce, homemade cheeses and breads, and local nuts and olives brought down from the surrounding villages.

Rock Tombs & Trekking Routes

Modern Fethiye was built at the site of the Ancient City of Telmessos and some of the ruins have survived over the centuries. The rock tomb of Amyntas is located on a mountainside near downtown Fethiye. The tomb was built around 350 BC by the Lycian people and is an impressive sight. Close to the tomb is the beginning of the Lycian Way, a 500 km trekking route that stretches from Fethiye to Antalya, meandering along the coast through forests, small villages, and charming coastal towns. Many different trekking routes of all levels surround Fethiye and nearby villages and provide an ideal way to appreciate the spectacular scenery that is Fethiye.

Boat Trips

Although highly recommended, if you decide not to opt for a Blue Cruise Turkey during your holiday, there are plenty of day trip options to explore the coast and nearby islands. Scheduled Blue Cruises can run anywhere from 3 to 7 nights and private yacht charters can be arranged to suit any travel plans. However, if you are short on time, simply take a stroll along the harbor and choose from a variety of day trip options to Butterfly Valley, Oludeniz Blue Lagoon, the 12 Islands, and so much more. Half day trips, sunset cruises, and private rentals are also available.


The region of Fethiye is known for some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Butterfly Valley and Oludeniz Blue Lagoon are a short ride away from downtown Fethiye and local beaches can also be accessed by public transportation along the Fethiye Peninsula (Aksazlar Bay, Samanlik Bays, Kuleli, and Boncuklu, to name a few).

Food & Accommodation

Fethiye is full of restaurants and markets with delicious and fresh food made from local produce and fish caught daily in the Fethiye harbor. Join locals at the fish market where you can choose your fish and bring it to any of the restaurants in the market where they will then cook your meal and provide side dishes and drinks to compliment your choice.

Before taking off for your Fethiye to Olympos gulet cruise, be sure to reserve a few days for the culturally rich port town of Fethiye.

Discover the Hidden Bays and Beaches of Fethiye

Fethiye is undoubtedly famous for its bays and beaches, and visitors always think that the best way to enjoy this destination is to head to popular spots like Calis and Oludeniz. But there are other bays and beaches of Fethiye that have often been overlooked because they are not as advertised as the ones mentioned.

These local bays and beaches of Fethiye have beauty and charm of their own and they too deserve equal recognition.

Aksazlar Bay
If you want to bask in the sun while watching the mesmerising Fethiye scenery, you should try visiting Aksazlar Bay. This is the ideal location for people who do not like to mingle with the beach crowd, as it is never crowded with tourists. Here, you have the choice to lie on the sunbeds that are positioned on the beach. You can also choose to sit under the trees if you are more nature-inclined. The pine forest offers the unique opportunity of peaceful tranquility as you sit in the shade while you watch the yachts in the distance.

If you are planning on spending your day swimming, this bay may not be the best choice. Aksazlar Kosu does not belong to those bays and beaches of Fethiye that offers crystal blue waters. Even though the water is shallow and calm, it’s a bit murky because the bay is in close proximity to the Fethiye harbor. Some people do take a swim here though, but you must see and decide for yourself first.

Aksazlar Bay
Aksazlar Bay

This less than perfect swimming condition is actually the main reason why not so many tourists come to this bay, which gives some people the chance to just sit back and relax. To make this bay more appealing to tourists, it has taken on a more restaurant-feel.

Kukeli Koyu
Another often ignored beach in Fethiye is the Kukeli Koyu. This bay is set in the pine forests clearing that covers the hillsides in the length of the coastline. The best thing about this bay is that it has managed to remain rustic and simple despite the fact that other bays and beaches of Fethiye had gone more commercial.
There is one wooden café that serves tourists with drinks and snacks on plastic tables and chairs. There are also shaded kosks, and umbrellas and sun beds for rent for guests who wish to lounge all day long. Entertainment comes with guinea fowls, cockerels and chickens running around freely on the beach.

There are many other beautiful bays and beaches of Fethiye that you can visit, explore and enjoy, but the two mentioned above offer different holiday options for people with different vacation needs. Others that may be of interest include Boncuklu Bay, Gemiller Beach and Samanlik.

Most Popular and Exciting Things to Do In Fethiye

If you are planning to visit Turkey and contemplating the things to do in Fethiye, you should prepare yourself to be amazed with what’s in store for you. Fethiye is simply a tourist paradise. It boasts of numerous attractions and breathtaking sights that will surely keep every visitor wanting to coming back. With all the many things to do in Fethiye, the top things have been chosen and listed down to help leisure travellers in planning their Turkey holiday vacations. In no particular order, here are the top  things to do in Fethiye:


Strolling in the Fethiye Old Town

One of the most important things to do in Fethiye – and probably the most natural – is to visit the Fethiye Old Town. Here you will get to enjoy a relaxing stroll around the Old Town as you get mesmerised with the number of shops where you can browse and buy souvenirs. To sum up your Old Town sauntering, you can get comfortable with a few drinks at the Deep Blue Bar.


Fethiye Old Town
Fethiye Old Town

Climbing up to the Fethiye Rock Tombs

If you are a bit of an adventurer, climbing up the Lycian rock tombs could be one of your choices for the things to do in Fethiye. Once you are there, you will enjoy the magnificent views of the Fethiye marina and the entire bay area.


Boating Trips

Going for boat trips is another popular adventure to experience in Fethiye. Among the many things to do in Fethiye, boating is probably one that offers the best value for your money. For six-seven hours, you can enjoy free lunch and five leisurely swim stops. You have the option to go boating with other tourists on board a big boat, or you can also enjoy maximum privacy by hiring a private boat.


Swimming in Fethiye Beaches

Your Fethiye vacation should be included with a swimming escapade in one or two of the best beaches in Fethiye. Your choices include; Samanlik bays, Aksazlar Bays, Boncuklu, Oludeniz and Kuleli.


Shopping at the Fethiye Market

Have you ever tried visiting a new country or location without taking a peek into the local market? That of course, is not a good idea especially if you are the kind of tourist that really wants to feel and experience local life. And visiting the local market is definitely one of the best things to do in Fethiye. Here you can shop at your heart’s content as you get to experience Fethiye’s shopping haven.


A Turkey vacation is never complete if you are not going to set foot in Fethiye. And your Fethiye experience is never going to be fulfilling if you ignore the best things to do in Fethiye. For more activities and things to do in Fethiye email us at

Top things to do in Fethiye

Vibrant Fethiye is a well-known jump off point for the infamous Mediterranean blue cruises in Turkey. From here you can begin to sail around Turkey in luxury exploring all the natural aquatic wonders this beautiful country has to offer. A trip to Olympos, Rhodes, and the 12 Islands are only a few of the magical places that are just a short sail away.

Nevertheless, there are many more attractions that bring people to this charming town throughout the year. From historical sites scattered in the town centrum and surrounds, to the world famous beaches – you will not be sorry you have booked to stay more than one night. Here’s our top things to do in Fethiye:

Kaya Koy & Afkule Monastery
Fethiye has a rich history engrained into every aspect of the town and villages surrounding. For those keen to learn about Fethiye’s interesting history and roots a visit to Kaya Koy should be on your list. A short drive from Fethiye, Kaya Koy is an abandoned Greek settlement that was abandoned after the population swap following World War 1. White concrete houses cover the hillsides, as well as beautiful old Greek churches. Take a walk through the ruins and pop down the hill afterwards for a drink and the famous Turkish pancake, Gozleme.
For those feeling energetic there is a beautiful walk from the top of Kaya Koy, all the way to Oludeniz. This takes 2-3 hours.
A short distance from Kaya Koy is the monastery of Afkule. This is a well hidden gem, sitting atop of the cliffs and impressive views over the Mediterranean. The walk is rough, so take good walking shoes. It takes approximately 15-20 minutes from the main road up to the monastery walking.

Camping at Butterfly Valley
Butterfly Valley is located at the bottom of a large cliff in the Taurus Mountain range nearby the famous Oludeniz beach. Basically untouched, Butterfly Valley is made up of large looming mountains that drop straight into the blue and aqua waters below, a small sandy beach and a few huts for people to stay in overnight. With no road leading into Butterfly Valley, it is only accessible by boat or a difficult trek from Faralya. For those looking for a more exotic experience, pack a tent and catch the small water taxi to Butterfly Valley to spend the night. You will be amazed at how peaceful it is with the beautiful Turkish sky lighting the night.

Stay in Butterfly Valley
Stay in Butterfly Valley

Shop at Fethiye Paspatur
Not only is Fethiye full of rich history, but markets and local shops selling everything from Turkish kilms to Turkish delights. The shops of the old town of Fethiye are owned and ran by locals, often pieces are one of a kind and at a very reasonable price.  The local markets nearby also sell genuine fake watches, clothes and handbags. The only problem with shopping is hoping you have saved enough space in your bag to get home!

Visit Saklikent Gorge
Perfect for a hot summer’s day, Saklikent is a 300 meter deep and 18km long gorge which suggests it is one of the largest on the world. The waters of the gorge come from the melted snow of the Taurus Mountains and are amazing to walk through in the peak of summer. There is also tube rides or many cafes to hang your legs over the rocks into the cool waters. To enter the gorge is 5TL but the rest of the park is free. Buses depart from Fethiye regularly throughout summer and also visit Yaka National Park and Tlos Ancient City.

Paragliding over Oludeniz
Babadag (Father Mountain) towering above the magnificent Oludeniz on the Southwest coast of Turkey is considered one of the best flying points in the world for paragliding. Beginners to the most experienced pilots in the world travel to Turkey to experience this thrill seeking activity with one of the best back drops to the 45 minute glide.. Jumping from 1600 – 2000 feet and flying over Oludeniz beach and the famous Blue Lagoon, it is without a doubt something NOT to be missed.  Alaturka offer both pick up and drop off to your hotel in Fethiye with their paragliding trips.

Jump on a blue cruise
We highly recommend not to miss a Fethiye to Olympos 4 day/3 night blue cruise, it will change your life! However if you are short on time, there are also day boat trips available. Some of the sites you can see on one of the day blue cruises include St Nicholas Island, Butterfly Valley, 12 Islands and the Fethiye Blue Cave. Alaturka offer trips on both double decker boats and sailing gulets.

Day trip to Rhodes
A short boat trip away is the Greek Island of Rhodes. Ferries depart from the Fethiye harbour throughout summer in the morning and return in the afternoon. Rhodes is full of history, cafes, beautiful beaches and shopping delights. A day return ticket to Rhodes from Fethiye on the ferry costs 60 euro and is suggested to be booked at least 1-2 days in advance. For high season it is suggested booking at least one week in advance.

Pamper yourself
Especially for those travelling for a while you may have started to look a bit fatigued – Fethiye has an abundance of hairdressers, barbers and nail bars. Get your hair washed and blow dried for around 15TL or get a close shave for not much more. Why not go the full extent and have a Turkish bath (Hamam). For around 30TL have a steam, sauna, exfoliation and bubble bath massage. You will feel a million bucks afterwards!

This is just the tip of the iceberg, Fethiye is full of fun and activities for those active travellers or close to many private bays for those who would like to relax and enjoy the sunshine. For more tips or more activities in Fethiye email or check the Alaturka Turkey Fethiye Tours page