A mix of old and new is what you get on holidays to Kaleici. On one hand, there are Ottoman buildings and historical sights round every corner. On the other, you’ve got bars, restaurants and a chic harbour.
Kaleici is the beautiful old quarter of Antalya city. Its narrow lanes are lined with old Ottoman houses and shady stone courtyards, while the restored Roman harbour is edged with cafés and restaurants serving fresh seafood. It’s split up into three districts – Selcuk Mahallesi, Tuzcula Mahallesi and Barbaros Mahallesi – but is small enough that you can get everywhere on foot.
Historical sights are scattered throughout the town. The Broken Minaret stands among the ruins of an old temple-come-church-come-mosque. There’s a Roman triumphal arch marking the entrance to the town. And, wherever you are, you can usually see the spire of Antalya’s famous Grooved Minaret poking above the rooftops.
Konyaalti Beach is a 20-minute walk from Kaleici. It’s a huge runway of sand and shingle that’s popular with locals. Edging it is a boardwalk, along which you’ll find plenty in the way of restaurants and cafés.
Half an hour’s drive from Kaleici is the classical city of Perge. It was founded back in 1300 BC, and you can still walk down its column-fringed main street and potter past ruined temples, fountains and marketplaces. A little further on is Aspendos, home to a mammoth 15,000-seater Roman amphitheatre.
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