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On a broad bay dotted with pretty islands, Fethiye has one of the most beautiful natural harbours on the Turkish Mediterranean coast. It's also within a short drive of two of Turkey's most beautiful beaches, Çalış Beach and Ölüdeniz, and the best places to stay in Fethiye offer easy access to all these.
Considering its natural assets, Fethiye is relatively small - due to its precarious position as far as earthquakes are concerned. But these dramatic, destructive moments in the town's history only make it a fascinating as well as beautiful place to visit.
The last big earthquake happened in 1958, levelling the town, apart from the ruins of the ancient city of Telmessos, which have survived numerous earthquakes now. So the neat, low rise buildings are all new.
But Fethiye is probably the only town in the world where you'll find sarcophagus in the streets, beautifully lit up at night. These Lycian relics, like the wonderful tombs cut into the cliffs above the town, give Fethiye a totally unique look and feel.
Swim, lounge, parasail, paraglide, sea kayak, sail, jet ski, Fethiye is a wonderful place to be out on the water. And one of the best places in the world to try paragliding, because you get a spectacular view of Ölüdeniz's perfect lagoon on descent.
This is also a great spot for island hopping, and an armada of small vessels leaves port every morning to explore the charming islands dotted around the bay.
The Lycian Way extends over 500kms along the coastal area of the ancient land of Lycia, between Fethiye and Antalya, and is recognised as one of the world's best long-distance walks - for more information visit Walkopedia. The route is along old village paths and tracks used to link rural settlements in the days before motorised transport - and the views are just a daily joy! Spectacular and remote, you pass through beautiful countryside scattered with the reminders of past civilisations. And even if you're not planning to do the whole thing there are plenty of small sections you can do around Fethiye.
Saklikent Gorge is another great hiking spot close to Fethiye, as is Kayakoy, the ghost village, which is the ruins of a Greek village abandoned in 1923 when Greece and Turkey had mandatory population swaps. Fethiye is also a good place to stay if you want to explore some of the great ruins of the Lycian Coast.
As well as the beautiful beaches and wonderful scenery, Fethiye has plenty of free attractions. Including a great Tuesday farmers' market, an impressive Roman Amphitheatre, a fort, the rock tombs - including the huge Tomb of Amyntas - and a museum housing fascinating items from the tombs and the ruined towns.
For the beach
- The Oyster Residences are one of the best places to stay in Fethiye if you're here for the beautiful beaches. Right on its own quiet stretch of beach, the Oyster Residences also has a lovely green garden and an inviting looking lagoon pool.
- The Villa Mandarin, perched on the cliffs with spectacular beach views, is one of the best places to stay in Fethiye for walkers. It's an eight room country house with plenty of charm, sea views from private balconies and gourmet Turkish food. if you want to explore the Lycian Way they have special weeks with guided walks during April, May and October.
For those on a budget
- The 14 rooms of the Yonca Lodge are split between four different houses, set amongst beautiful fruit trees and green lawns, in the spectacularly beautiful Gulf of Fethiye. Sun loungers sit waiting for you along the beach, chickens and ducks mess around in the gardens and there's an open-air bar and great restaurant serving local produce. And all starting from just £85 per night.
Best Hotels in Fethiye
Yonca Lodge 14 rooms from $83Fethiye (Yaniklar Koyu)
It's all in the location at this small hotel set in stunning gardens with a private beach. Traditionally styled rooms feature open fireplaces and terraces. Mediterranean and Aegean cuisine is served by a stream. An abundance of activities within easy access. Ideal for family holidays.Eco break - Great attention is paid to eco processes and sustainability- all natural building materials and the restaurant is organic.Total relaxation - Unwind in the lovely organic fruit orchards, overlooking the beach with comforting home cooked meals served al fresco.Diving - Head to one of the local dive centres and explore the crystal clear fish filled waters.Fishing - Fishing is available from the hotel, without charge. Try your hand at catching dinner!
Hotel Unique 19 rooms from $84Fethiye
Built in line with traditional Turkish custom, this boutique hotel exudes local originality. From its Lycian ruins entrance to stone and wood walls, it's a celebration of Fethiya's culture. Explore the stunning coastline or dive into enthralling market streets. Ideal for a taste of Turkish culture.Romantic Break - A deeply romantic resort with elegant suites overlooking the turquoise waters, Turkish hammam and fantastic food.Beach Life - An incredible cliff-side resort carved into a series of terraces leading down to the sparkling Aegean Sea.Local markets - Check out the local market place, within a short walk of the hotel.Sights nearby - The Telmessos Rock Tombs are within a mile of the hotel.Recommended by - Tablet
Yacht Classic Hotel 35 rooms from $104Fethiye
Luxury hotel overlooking the Gulf of Fethiye. Rooms light, spacious and contemporary with elegant furnishings and french doors that open out to private sit-out balconies. With Turkish baths, glorious outdoor swimming pools, spa, private marina, outdoor restaurant and bar. A place to unwind.Views - To sea, over garden, to mountainsSwimming Pool - Outdoor, with children's areaSights nearby - Rock tombs, ancient citiesSailing - Overlooking the marina
La Boutique Maya 30 rooms from $104Fethiye (Olu Deniz)
Just 750 yards from Oludeniz Beach, with a large swimming pool and many activities this hotel is a family friendly affair. A buffet continental breakfast is served plus the restaurant offers international cuisine. Light, freshly coloured rooms include patterned wallpaper and throws and balconies.Families - Family suites, large pool and plenty of activities this property is great for families.Value chic - Excellent value for money you can bring the entire family and their friends!Diving - Dive reefs, wrecks and caves and spot some giant turtles!Private Hot Tub - Penthouse rooms have a terrace with private jacuzzi
Oyster Residences 25 rooms from $142Fethiye (Olu Deniz)
A romantic beach side property set in pretty gardens overlooking the beach. Light airy rooms with mosquito net draped beds and large modern bathrooms. A terraced restaurant specialises in Mediterranean seafood. Lounge by the pool sipping on cocktails. Ideal for a couples escape.Honeymoons - An elegant and grown up hotel featuring a romantic honeymoon suite with seperate entrance and terrace overlooking the beach.Beach Life - Set on the extensive white stretch of sand of Belcekız Beach, bask in the turquoise waters and enjoy sunset walks.Diving - There are diving opportunities in Ölüdeniz and further away near Kaş.Kayaking - Explore the coves in a sea kayak either on a day or a night tour.
Avalon Hotel 11 rooms from $130Fethiye (Fethiye/Mugla)
A picturesque paradise on the Aegean Sea. Avalon's eleven beautifully simple bungalows are designed to compliment their gorgeous surroundings. Explore a coastline packed with antiquated heritage or simply luxuriate by the pool. A wondrous delight, perfect for an intimate romantic getaway.Romantic Break - A stunningly beautiful adults only resort overlooking Kabak Bay, with fantastic restaurant and indulgent private villas.Back to Nature - Wooden bungalows scattered amongst olive groves and fruit trees with flower filled gardens on this enchanting island.Sailing - Charter a boat to explore the coves and beaches along the coast, or head for a day trip to the island monastery of St Nicholas.Sights nearby - Telmessos Rock Tombs and Kayakoy Ghost Town are both around ten miles away.Recommended by - I Escape
Hillside Beach Club 330 rooms from $191Fethiye (Muğla)
Nestled on Fethiye’s Mediterranean coast this resort boats three private beaches (one adults only) no less than five bars, three restaurants and a nightclub. There are kids clubs, arts and crafts, tennis court and many water and outdoor activities. Modern rooms have private balconies views that wow.Diving - There is a diving school on the beach and you can aquire certification should you not already have it.Sailing - The hotel organises day trips to your choice of the surrounding islands.Secluded setting - For escaping.Kids Club - Fully staffed.
Villa Mandarin 8 rooms from $224Fethiye (Uzunyurt)
Fabulous country house on a cliff top overlooking Turkey's best virgin beaches. Beautiful creamy rooms and suites, stunning gardens and pool, fantastic Turkish food, and lots of sports and beach activities. Romantic, gourmet, active and relaxing. Perfect for honeymoons. Prices quoted for half board.Foodies - Fantastic Turkish food, five-course dinners.Beach Life - Turkey's best beaches.Active Holiday - Fantastic hiking.HoneymoonsRecommended by - I Escape