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Introducing Antalya

Situated directly on the Gulf of Antalya (Antalya Körfezi), this quickly growing epi­centre of both ancient history and thoroughly modern Turkish culture has, since the 1960s, become known as a gateway city for the country’s so-called ‘Turkish Riviera’. Over the past decade sun-worshippers heading to nearby Mediterranean resorts have been laying over in Antalya in such great numbers that the guesthouse industry has experienced astounding growth of its own – by more than 200%, according to tourism officials.

It isn’t difficult to discern why: The preserved Roman-Ottoman quarter of Kaleiçi commands a heart-stopping view of the Beydağları (Bey Mountains), as well as the Roman harbour at Kaleiçi’s base and the refreshingly clean body of water in between. And although its populace hasn’t yet reached the level of urban sophistication found in İstanbul or Ankara, life here nonetheless pushes forward at a remarkably modern clip. Antalya lays claim to some of Turkey’s finest restaurants, one of its most impressive archaeological museums, and some of its best-preserved Ottoman architecture.