Kalkan
Once a small fishing village on Turkey's turquoise Lycian coast Kalkan is now a charming sophisticated resort. Against the backdrop of the Taurus Mountains it spills its way downwards to its beautiful small harbour. Owing to its topography a view of the blue Mediterranean sea can be enjoyed from almost anywhere in Kalkan.

Kalkan is an hospitable place. Shopkeepers will often offer Tea and without obligation to purchase, the Apple Tea is especially tasty. It is a stress free and ‘laid-back’ place. The local Turkish people are friendly and will enjoy chatting to you in English but will be delighted if you attempt a few words in Turkish.

Stopping at one of the many alfresco bars or cafes along the cobbled streets, up the hill from the harbour, is a pleasant way of ending many a wonderful evening before returning to Villa Samanyolu for a nightcap.

nb. If you have an iPad or iPhone why not download the free App which includes interactive mapping of banks, shops etc in Kalkan:

Click to go to Download


Things to Do and Places to See
The information provided below is by no means comprehensive but will provide an idea of what you might expect. There are lots of websites which can provide additional information.

Kalkan is upmarket and especially so compared to some areas of Turkey which many believe to have been spoiled. A friend described Kalkan as being similar to a Cornish fishing village. Kalkan is one of the most pristine enclaves in all of the Mediterranean, and the Kisla area of Kalkan in our view the best place to stay.

Restaurants
There are lots of great restaurants serving very good quality food - in fact too many to list here - places to suit all tastes and price range.

The atmosphere, service, freshness and quality of the food in the multitude of restaurants match expectations. The 'Old Town' and beyond has a wonderful array of rooftop and harbour side restaurants, each one with personal and friendly service. Dining under the night sky looking out on to the harbour and the sea beyond is a memorable experience.

Night Life
One way to end the day is to enjoy the atmospheric blues and jazz bars by the harbour well into the early hours of the morning. There are a few low key discos in the Old Town, but they seem more of a dance floor within a bar that opens on to the street rather than those with the pulsating, laser assisted alcoholic frenzy which are to be found in some of the larger Turkish resorts. Young and old, resident and visitor in Kalkan prefer it this way.

Beaches / Swimming
The sea is a short distance from our villa and it takes about 5 minutes to reach the beach. Kisla has a small pebbly beach near the platforms of Kalkan Beach Club.

The swimming here is easy with shallow water near the shore. It is a great place for snorkeling with crystal clear water (blue flag designation) and interesting fish to be seen. Gulets often anchor in the bay just off-shore during the day which add further interest.

Patara Beach can only be described as stunning with 17 km of unspoiled coast with no hotels or other development other than a bar / restaurant on the beech. It is located in a national park and is a short drive from Kalkan. The swimming is fantastic and the views stunning. The road to the beach has unspoiled Lycian ruins. So if any of your party are interested in the ancient world they will be more than pleased with this. The following web site has information on Patara Beach and Lycian History.

The stunning Kaputas beach is 10 minutes drive away and is often the beach featured in travel brochures for Turkey. Dolmu┼čes (shared minibuses) make frequent runs to this beach daily from the centre of Kalkan. 

Beach Clubs
There are a number of beach clubs around Kalkan. Platforms cut into the rock for swimming and sunbathing in the day. Sun-beds and umbrellas are provided with a small charge of charge about £2 to £3 a day. In some beach clubs such as Villa Mahal tables are placed on the rock platforms where you can enjoy dinner by the sea as the sun goes down.

In the summer water taxis run an efficient shuttle service to and from each beach club to Kalkan harbour from 7am. to 7pm. Dolmus buses also carry visitors to the clubs. There are a variety of water sports available at the beach clubs.

I especially recommend Villa Mahal Beach Club located not far from Villa Samanyolu

Scuba Diving
It is also possible to take a scuba diving course at Kalkan dive centre

Sailing
There are trips on the traditional Turkish sailing vessels called Gulets.

Gulet cruises are extremely popular in Kalkan. There are several competing cruises to choose from, but there is very little difference between them. They all operate from Kalkan harbour, and offer pretty much the same things. You can actually visit the boats in the evenings and the crews will give you a tour before you decide which one to choose.

A typical cruise starts off at about 10.30am and returns by 5.30pm. One cruise is Romantik Cruises which, apparently, Robbie Williams has experienced. A private cruise will cost in the region of £130 for the day, less if shared with others. The cruise starts off from the harbour towards Kisla Bay, then Kaputas Beach 03 and Snake Island 06 (weather permitting), then back round the bay and to Kalkan

For even more independence you can hire a small boat from Kalkan Dive Centre for just £55 for the day (2009 price).

Excursions
Nearby towns of Kas (pronounced Cash) and Fethiye are just 27km and 67km away respectively. There are many places of interest within a 45 minutes drive from Kalkan such as the excellent Saklikent Gorge

See also, Tlos, Xanthos, Pinara, Letoon and Bezirgan and Islamlar villages.

Shopping
Along the steep cobbled streets of the 'old town' in the whitewashed shuttered buildings with their old Ottoman timbered balconies covered in bougainvillea, are boutiques stocked with crafts and antiques, jewellery and rugs, colourful pottery, clothing and bags. Restaurants, estate agents and tour operators are dotted in-between. These shops which spill out onto the cobbled streets stay open until around midnight from May to October. Late at night people of all ages stroll from one street to the other in safety and enjoy the relaxed but lively ambience.

The Thursday market (about 8.30 am to 7 pm) is not to be missed. As well as the usual local produce there are a large number of stalls selling ‘genuine fakes’. The quality does vary but you can buy a ‘Rolex’ watch for £15. The watch might only work for a year but is still good value. I bought some ‘Ralph Lauren’ Polo shirts which are really good quality and at just a few pounds each are fantastic value. Bargaining for a good price is both expected and fun.

Just a few streets behind Villa Samanyolu is ‘Kisla Market and Bob’s Cafe. Especially good for when you run out of milk or other basic essentials. At lunchtime you can phone for a cooked lunch, and it will be delivered right to the door within 30 minutes. A kebab meal (kebab, chips, salad, rice) will cost you about £4

Banks
Kalkan has plenty of banks with cash points. Do not exchange money at the airport - you will not get a good exchange rate.

www.villa-samanyolu.co.uk