With a spectacular setting on the Turkish Riviera, it's no wonder the port city of Fethiye has emerged as one of Turkey’s most popular tourist centres. It is located on the site of the ancient city of Telmessos and his home to a fascinating collection of ruins, combined with undeniable natural beauty.
Although historians know that Alexander the Great captured the acropolis here in around 333BC, the city remains largely undocumented throughout the Byzantine period. It wasn’t until the Arab-Byzantine Wars of the 7th and 8th centuries that the city was fortified and emerged as Telmessos around 800AD. The settlement fell to the Turks in the late 12th century before becoming part of the Ottoman Empire in 1424 and named Fethiye in 1934 in honour of the pilot, Fethi Bey.
Today Fethiye is renowned for the huge number of rock-cut tombs that have been carved into the surrounding cliffs and exhibit fine stonemasonry, as well as the Byzantine fortress that overlooks the city. In addition to its Hellenistic theatre, Tomb of Amyntas and sarcophagi scattered through the streets, the city’s tumultuous history is also evident at nearby Kayakoy where a Greek Orthodox church still stands despite the region’s greek population being “exchanged” during the Greek-Turk War.
Don’t miss a visit to the Museum of Fethiye, which offers a fascinating glimpse into what was once the most important city in Lycia through a fascinating selection of ancient artefacts that span the city’s successive civilizations. Then visit the nearby ancient ruins of Tios and Gemiler Island, each with their own stories to tell.
Fethiye is also a great base for exploring Europe’s second largest gorge, the Saklikent Gorge, as well as the Dalyan mud baths and spectacular Turtle Beach where loggerhead turtles come to lay their eggs. Or take to the skies on a thrilling paragliding adventure over the stunning landscape of Oludeniz’ Blue Lagoon.
Situated at the meeting point of the Mediterranean and Aegean Seas, Fethiye is a dream destination, and the range of activities available are endless. So join us for one of our exciting Fethiye shore excursions to explore the natural beauty and intoxicating history of this beautiful city.