Blue Flag beach
Tekirova comes complete with a six-kilometre beach bordering the Mediterranean Sea. It’s a Blue Flag award-winning stunner, made up of sand and pebbles. Many of the coastal resorts claim exclusive patches of shore all to themselves, but you’ll still be able to stretch out along the waves if you’ve picked Turkey holiday packages inland.
Restaurants and bars are scattered along the coast for prime waterfront lounging, as are sunbeds and umbrellas. You can rent jet skis, banana boats and surfboards, while local diving centres will hook you up with scuba or snorkelling gear.
This little resort resides in the foothills of Mount Olympos, so the Tekirova landscape is a patchwork of dazzling blues and greens. Sportier types can set off for hikes through the mountainside while more laid-back types can take a cable car to the top, though this is certainly not for the faint of heart – it’ll whisk you up to the 2,365 metre summit.
Only a 10-minute drive away, you’ll also find the old city of Phaselis. Built on a peninsula, it’s now in ruins – ancient Roman ruins, to be exact. Standing amid a thick forest are an amphitheatre, Roman arches and baths, all of which can be toured. They’re tucked alongside the waterfront, too, so even refreshing dips are steeped in history.
Many of the dining options in Tekirova can be found within the super-sized resorts dotted around the coastline, but if you’re looking for a more classic Tekirova feel, there are a handful of Turkish restaurants hidden away in some pretty unique settings. Built above a waterfall, nestled along the waterfront or in town, you’ll find cuisine that’s heavy in seafood, thanks to the town’s waterfront location.
Nights in Tekirova tend to end early, unless you settle into one of the hotel bars. For evenings that stretch into mornings, the nearby town of Kemer has your back. It’s a 10-minute drive north to its popular street Daniz Caddesi, where you’ll find a tantalising array of bars and nightclubs.
Tekirova is something of a metropolis for luxury hotels. Whitewashed spires and palace-like buildings dominate the waterfront, peppering their private stretches of beach with colonies of sunbeds. Because Tekirova is on the smaller side, these mountainous hotels tend to be one-stop shops for visiting holidaymakers. Stocked with bars – and rarely just one – restaurants, swimming pools, spas and evening entertainment, you won’t find yourself wanting for anything.
Some of the hotels within Tekirova even feature their own shops, where you can pick up stylish bits like jewellery and gifts. Beach goods and souvenirs can be found in shops sprinkled throughout town, but for more unique, local finds, Tekirova hosts a weekly market every Saturday. Its stalls carry everything from handmade pottery to ceramics, spices and local produce – bartering is always encouraged.
Kemer is Tekirova’s livelier counterpart, with all the amenities of a big-time resort but the scenic, mountainside atmosphere of a more secluded gem. The two towns are within easy reach of one another, especially if you hop in a cab.
It adds another face to the southern coast’s beautiful beach category, with two bays split by a marina topped with the town’s most elegant restaurants. There’s a dolphinarium and selection of museums, a Turkish marketplace and some of the best partying opportunities this part of Turkey has to offer.