Our top five walks around Kalkan
Overseas Manager Vicki Eğriboyun shares her top five walks near Kalkan.
"If your idea of a walking holiday comes packaged with an easy pace, swim stops and atmospheric rooftop restaurants to sustain you, head for the sophisticated little resort of Kalkan in Turkey. It’s on the route of the Lycian Way, a track that meanders along the coast from Fethiye to Antalya – over 500 km. But you don’t need to do it all. Book yourself into one of our villas or hotels in Kalkan, pack your walking boots and prepare to be wowed by the authentic, the dramatic and the historic without ever being far from your creature comforts."
The Islamlar Heights (1.5 hours)
Your starting point: You’ll need a car to get you there as the walk starts high above Islamlar village. Your local representative will be able to give you details of the exact spot.
Your walk begins with the ruins of an ancient settlement with fabulous views of the mountains inland and across the Patara plains. Your half-way point, before you turn back and retrace your steps, is a rocky ledge. It overlooks Bezirgan village, resting on a flat plateau below. Before you get back into the car, you can also enjoy a leisurely lunch in one of Islamlar’s trout restaurants.
The Bezirgan Village Walk (1.5 hours)
Your starting point: The village itself. This is a leisurely circular stroll.
A traditional working village, Bezirgan is truly a place where time has stood still. As they’ve done for centuries, residents of Kalkan retreat here for the summer for quiet and to escape the heat of the coast. The land is good for farming and, in early season, you’ll see horse-drawn ploughs at work in the fields. Look out for the cedar-wood storage houses (ambars) once used to store grain over the winter months, and enjoy a Turkish brew in the teahouse under the walnut tree in the centre of the village. If you visit in May, the valley is covered in scarlet poppies.
Kaş to Limanağizi Bay (2 hours)
Your starting point: Drive to Kaş centre and set off from the harbour.
Follow the road along the coast from the harbour, passing Big Pebble Beach before heading inland and into the countryside. Keep an eye open for tortoises and sunbathing lizards before you drop back down to the coast and cafés on Limanağizi Beach. Enjoy a cooling dip or hop on a boat for an invigorating 15 minutes at sea on the way back to Kaş.
Patara Sand Dunes (3 hours)
Your starting point: The little village of Gelemiş, near Patara Beach.
Head up through the pine forests and you’ll reach the magnificent dunes, a recent film location. Walk across the sand to the shoreline, heading left along the water’s edge towards the café. There, you can grab a cold drink before you follow the road inland back to Gelemiş, passing the ancient ruins of Patara, the area’s best archaeological site.
The Aquaduct Trail (4.5 hours)
Your starting point: The village of Akbel, 2km above Kalkan.
This route follows the ruins of Delikkemer, the ancient aqueduct that once took spring water from Islamlar village to the ancient city of Patara. From Akbel, follow signs for the Lycian Way and pick up the red and white route markers. Half-way between your starting point and Patara, you will stumble upon an enormous stone wall with a carved pipe line running along the top. It’s now hidden in an olive grove and would be easy to miss. Follow the contours of the hill until the trail drops down to the Patara ruins where you can enjoy a beer and a swim before getting the bus back to Kalkan.
Vicki’s tip: "Turkish spring weather is ideal for walking – sunny and mild – but it's best to wear long trousers and good hiking boots even on a warm day, and you should always carry suncream and water."