Kalkan - paradise in the Turkish Mediterranean
Kalkan is a beautiful resort on the Turkish Mediterranean Sea. It is surrounded by the Taurus mountains and has impressive Ottoman Greek architecture. Approximately 1 hour 20 minutes drive from the nearest airport - Dalaman - there’s no need to hire a car as there are plenty of comfortable airport transfers and excursion companies once you are in town. A foodies heaven, this small pebbly town beach has many cafes and restaurants to eat in or take away.
Kalkan Beach on the entrance to Kalkan harbour is a beautiful white pebble beach with safe swimming for children and pristine water. There are a number of beach clubs - a couple with swimming platforms and slides and then a couple of quieter ones with comfy day beds and restaurants. A 10 minute drive away is Kaputas Beach which has plenty of sun beds for hire with beautiful views and calm surroundings.
If you can venture a little out of town, about 15 minutes away by taxi is Patara Beach. Within a national park, Patara Beach is a must visit, especially if you want to see the nesting endangered turtles that breed on the beach.
Make sure you leave time to visit the ancient ruins of Patara where you can see the old parliament of Patara where the Lycean League was rumoured to have met. There’s a cafe on the beach so make a day of it!
Saklikent gorge - a 45 minute drive away from Kalkan - is one of the deepest gorges in the world. Walk along the gorge with a guide (who will carry your children across the water!), sit on eating platforms along the river, dangling your feet in the water, or try out tubing down the river where there's an option to have your child’s tube attached to a guide.
Back in Kalkan, there is an amazing Watersports company called Aristos. They come highly recommended by a regular Kalkan holidaymaker from our community who says that they taught her not only how to waterski, but how to waterski one handed with a champagne glass in her hand on her 50th last August! We’re totally in!
Boat trips are a big thing in Kalkan and amazingly good value. There are boats that do private hire but you can also join a larger group. Private hire works out at £25-£30 per person for a whole day (10am-6pm) and includes a fantastic freshly cooked lunch of about 10 dishes. A larger boat can be as little as £15 per person.
A write up about Kalkan would not be complete without telling you about birthdays. If anyone happens to have a birthday over your trip, the Turkish make a massive effort to make you feel so special. It usually includes (probably dangerous) hand held fireworks and cake. So if you can time your trip around someone’s birthday, then all the better!
And last but not least - the shopping! There’s a weekly market with a great balance between nice stuff, spices, Turkish delight and little things for children to spend their money on.
I don’t know about you but we’re searching for accommodation in Kalkan right now! Thanks to Caroline Stewart for her input to this blog post.