Once known as Antiphellos, the beautiful harbour town of Kas lies in the province of Antalya, with its winding, cobblestone streets tumbling down to the warm waters of the Mediterranean. Its atmospheric coastal setting, combined with crumbling ancient ruins and lush surrounding countryside, have made it an idyllic Turkish holiday destination.
Initially founded by the Lycians, with its ancient necropolis known as Habesos, it was under Greek rule that it was later named Antiphellos. During the 4th century it became part of the Byzantine Empire, before being annexed by the Seljuk Turks and later coming under Ottoman power. Although Kas had a large Greek population at one stage, many left in 1923 under a Turkish-Greek agreement, and their distinctive houses can still be seen today.
Kas has managed to retain its laid-back seaside atmosphere, with fisherman seen unloading their catch in the harbour while tourists wile away the hours in its quaint cafes and shop in its small boutiques and galleries. A Lycian-style sarcophagus can still be seen in the centre of town, or head to its outskirts where a crumbling theatre and necropolis lie. The hills surrounding Kas are also scattered with ancient tombs that have been magnificently carved into the rock faces.
Kas makes an ideal base for exploring the surrounding region and its ancient Lycian remains, including the partially submerged town of Simena and the scattered underwater ruins of Kekova Island. The waters within this protected marine area are so clear that you can snorkel over the remnants of ancient buildings, staircases and columns.
For adventure seekers, there is beautiful coastal trekking available along the famed Lycian Way and in the surrounding mountains of Kas, as well as thrilling white water rafting and canyoning adventures. Kas also has a reputation as one of the best places to go paragliding in Turkey, offering bird’s eye views across the old town and its harbour, as well as the offshore Greek island of Kastellorizo.
For a taste of traditional Turkish rural living, head into the surrounding towns and villages. Here groves of oranges and lemons intersperse with pine forests, and local produce, such as honey and almonds, are sold on the roadside.
The diving surrounding Kas is also second to none, with ancient wrecks and ruins, as well as spectacular reefs, canyons and caves to explore. Its fascinating underwater sites combine with crystal clear, warm waters, as well as unique marine life that includes Mediterranean monk seals.
You can take to the waters surrounding Kas by sea kayak to explore its secluded bays and pristine beaches at a lazy pace, or hop on board a traditional gulet yacht to take in the natural beauty and historic intrigue of Kas’ surrounding coastline.
There is no doubt that Kas is one of Turkey’s most atmospheric and alluring destinations, and our shore excursions offer a variety of ways to explore this spectacular corner of the Mediterranean.