Turkish Riviera holiday planned? 10 tips you should know!
The Turkish Riviera is a coastal region in the province of Antalya.
It is the most visited tourist destination on the southern Turkish coast, with shallow sandy beaches, 300 sunny days a year and well rated all inclusive hotels.
Here I have gathered all the useful information for a trip to the Turkish Riviera, including a presentation of beach resorts, good hotels, easy travel, the most beautiful sights and insider tips.
Okay … Then we start with my travel guide.
Red tower and the harbor in Alanya
1. Travel Guide
Introduction to the Turkish Riviera
Tour operators and Turkey differentiate the Turkish Riviera differently. For the Turks this means the entire south coast. The tour operators mainly mean the coast in the east of the province of Antalya.
I border the Turkish Riviera in the west with Kemer and in the east with Alanya. Why? This is a contiguous region with similar beach resorts.
West of Kemer begins the Lycian coast with the eco-tourism village Cirali. Compared to the Turkish Riviera are from Cirali to 200km further away Ölüdeniz on the Turkish Aegean almost no all-inclusive hotels. Some count Cape Anamur in the very east of the province Antalya still to the region.
From the German point of view, the center of the Turkish Riviera is clearly the region between Antalya-Lara and Alanya with Side as its center.
Next I will describe the individual seaside resorts on the Turkish Riviera with their special features.
Apollon Temple in Side, one of the landmarks of the Turkish Riviera
Beach resorts on the Turkish Riviera
The Turkish Riviera can be divided into five regions. The rule roughly follows the counties along the coast. I have also linked my travel guide to the individual seaside resorts. In it you will find a detailed description with recommended hotels, excursion destinations, restaurants, pictures, …
- Antalya-Lara: Long sandy beach in the east of the provincial capital, 5 star hotels with good reviews and a short transfer time from Antalya Airport.
- Belek:Exclusive seaside resort on the Turkish Riviera with high-class luxury hotels, golf resorts and family resorts.
- Side: together with the seaside resorts Kumköy, Colakli, Evrenseki, Titreyengöl and Manavgat you are the stronghold of German package holidaymakers in Turkey. The selection is huge in Side. In the region you will find 5 star high-class hotels as well as budget family hotels.
- Alanya: in the county town of Alanya are rather small hotels in the city center with a good connection to the night and city life. In Konakli, Türkler, Avsallar, Mahmutlar and Okurcalar are large all-inclusive hotels directly on the gently sloping sandy beach of the easternmost Turkish Riviera. Alanya is also the easternmost seaside resort on the Riviera.
- Kemer: To the region belong the beach resorts Beldibi, Göynük, Camyuva and Tekirova. Right in the center of Kemer, the hotels are located on a pebble beach. The hotels in the other seaside resorts are all located on a sandy beach.
Landing on Antalya with the Taurus Mountains in the background
3. Arrivals & Departures
Airports on the Turkish Riviera
- Antalya Airport: is the largest airport on the Turkish south coast with international flights to all major German cities. More than 95% of all tourists arrive at Antalya Airport.
- Alanya-Gazipasa Airport: Regional airport 140km east of Antalya with few international flights. You can reach it with one change in Istanbul or Ankara. Gazipasa is just a great alternative for a trip to Alanya. The price for flights to Alanya is on average the same or a bit more expensive than to Antalya.
Flights to the Turkish Riviera
The Turkish Riviera can be reached directly from all major German cities throughout the year. The airlines also have a large number of flights from small cities in the summer.
Depending on the season, a return ticket costs between 120 and 350 € to Antalya. The flights are most expensive in summer. There is a discount during the early booking campaigns of the airlines in winter. As a result, you will usually find flights under 250 € in the summer.
The Turkish Riviera is also a typical package holiday destination. The common booking of hotel and flight is almost always cheaper.
More on this: So you find a good flight to Turkey!
Harbor in the old town of Antalya
The beach resorts are located on the Turkish Riviera between 10 and 140km from Antalya Airport. The nearest seaside resort is Antalya-Lara. Alanya is farthest from Antalya, but has its own airport in the neighboring town of Gazipasa, 40km away.
- Airport transfer: works on the Turkish Riviera 99% by bus or private transfer from Antalya Airport or Alanya-Gazipasa. In the price of the package holidays, the transfer is usually already there. If you are looking for a transfer, mitmit Urlaubstransfers.de. you will find a bus and a private transfer withGetyourguide.de. For a minimum of three persons in a car, a private transfer costs about the same as a place on a bus.
- Public transport: The airport in Antalya is connected by tram to the city center. With another change you reach the bus station (Otogar) Antalya. From there buses run to all beach resorts and cities of Turkey. The journey to the hotel by public bus (Dolmus) takes 1-2 hours longer than with a bus and costs only a few euros less.
- Car: There are eight rental car companies at the airport. In winter, booking is also possible with a short-term reservation. In summer, the offer at the last moment is sometimes scarce. The D400 expressway leads directly from the airport to all surrounding beach resorts. Here are 17 tips for driving a car in Turkey.
More on this: So you find a good airport transfer in Antalya!
Barut Lara Hotel
Best Hotels on the Turkish Riviera & Travel Tips
All seaside resorts on the Turkish Riviera have 4 and 5 star all-inclusive family hotels. Here I have quickly in key points again the individual hotel categories assigned to the beach resorts:
- Antalya-Lara: All-inclusive family hotels and high-class resorts on Lara beach and good boutique hotels in old town Kaleici.
- Belek: All-inclusive high-class resorts, golf resorts and family hotels in direct beach location.
- Side Region: All-inclusive family hotels, high-class resorts and some very low-priced 4-star all-inclusive hotels.
- Alanya: 3 and 4 star hotels in the city center with half board or all inclusive, 4 and 5 star all inclusive family hotels and beach resorts between Okurcalar and Konakli.
- Kemer: All inclusive family hotels
The region around Side with Evrenseki, Colakli, Titreyengöl and Manavgat is the stronghold of German package holidaymakers on the Turkish Riviera. In Side are some of the top rated 5 star hotels in Turkey and there are also reasonably priced hotels.
In the price comparison side cuts off always because of the large selection in comparison with all other seaside resorts in the Mediterranean. The cheap hotels in Side are also good, which you can quickly see in the reviews.
Recommended hotels I have linked in the individual travel guides to the beach resorts.
Orange Beach in Alanya
Book a holiday on the Turkish Riviera
For a package holiday on the Turkish Riviera I recommend the early booking offers from the tour operators. The discount amounts to a few percent compared to the normal price.
Last minute still works in Turkey in part. The selection of hotels is naturally smaller at the last minute. If you want to book a specific hotel with a special room category, I strongly recommend the early booking offers. Last minute works if you are flexible.
You can find more about this in my tips for the early bird offers in Turkey and to search for a last minute holiday in Turkey.
Here are my general tips for finding a package holiday in Turkey, with the 10 most typical mistakes when booking.
I wrote my own guide about family holidays with children in Turkey.
Booking: To search for a package holiday I recommend the reviews from HolidayCheck and the price comparison of HolidayCheck and Check24.net.
Ruins of Phaselis with the Tahtali Dagi (Olympos) in the background
Interesting places, sights and excursion destinations on the Turkish Riviera
Here is a quick list of the most visited tourist attractions on the Turkish Riviera. More attractions can be found in my list of 71 attractions in the province of Antalya. I also put in the guides to the individual seaside resorts before the local attractions.
- Antalya’s Old Town Kaleici: Roman ruins, 300-year-old Ottoman houses, a beautiful marina and more can be found in the center of the port city founded 2,200 years ago. These include shopping centers and the 50m high Düden waterfall on the cliffs of Antalya.
- Side Old Town: Ruins of the port city founded more than 3,000 years ago, shopping and restaurants.
- Alanya’s Castle Hill (Korakesion): Fortress city founded by the ancient Greeks, pirate quarters and winter residence of the Rum-Seljuk Sultans.
- Aspendos: the best preserved Roman theater.
- Perge: city founded 7,000 years north of Antalya.
- Manavgat Bazaar: the largest market on the Turkish south coast.
- Pamukkale: Natural thermal water pools within the UNESCO World Heritage listed ruins of the Roman city of Hierapolis.
- Jeep safaris: Take an off-road jeep through the Taurus Mountains and discover small villages and hidden places.
- Blue trip: Cruise along the coast to secluded coves on a Turkish gulet motor sailboat, all-inclusive with food and drink.
- Myra: Excursion to the hometown of Nicholas of Myra (Saint Nicholas), his Church of the Holy Sepulcher and 2,300-year-old Lycian rock stalls. Most of the time there is a boat ride near the sunken city of Simena on the coast of the island of Kekova.
- Tahtali Dagi Cable Car: Sea To Sky is the motto of the cable car on the 2,366m high Tahtali Dagi (Olympos) in Kemer. Mostly you also visit the ancient port city of Phaselis where you swim in the city harbor and the gas field Yanartas-Chimaira from Greek mythology in Cirali, which has been burning for at least 2,700 years.
Tip: State-run tourist attractions accept only Turkish Lira at the entrance. This includes all ancient archaeological sites and almost all museums on the Turkish Riviera. So you change cheap Euro in Turkish Lira.
View from the castle hill of Alanya on the Cleopatra beach
The most beautiful beaches on the Turkish Riviera
Almost the entire coast of the Turkish Riviera consists of a gently sloping continuous sandy beach. The only exception is the pebble beach in downtown Kemer and the Konyaalti sand pebble beach in downtown Antalya.
Along the 140km long coast between Antalya and Alanya are beach resorts. In between, there are always some lonely bays. I described them in my individual travel guides to the beach resorts.
Along the coast between Antalya and Kemer are also beach resorts. Here is a quick list of the best known beaches on the Turkish Riviera. Keep in mind, however, that many beaches do not have their own name because they simply form the coastline of the beach resorts. This is the case, for example, in Belek and Side.
- Cleopatra beach: long sandy beach below the castle hill of Alanya.
- Konyaalti Beach: miles of sand-pebble beach between the old town of Antalya and the Taurus Mountains, without hotels right on the beach.
- Antalya-Lara: long sandy beach in the east of Antalya with good 5 star hotels.
- Mermerli beach: very small beach next to the marina of Antalya in the old town Kaleici.
- Olympos Beach: Sandy pebble beach in the protected Olympos-Beydaglari National Park in Cirali.
- Phaselis: swim in the ancient city harbor of the Roman city.
- Incekum: translated “fine sand” is a very shallow sandy beach in the district of Alanya with good family hotels.
The weather in Side in spring (March)
Best time to travel and an aircondition table
|JAN||6-14 °||17 °||12-15|
|February||7-15 °||17 °||9-12|
|March||8-20 °||18 °||7-9|
|April||12-25 °||20 °||4-7|
|MAY||15-30 °||22 °||3-5|
|June||18-32 °||23 °||0-3|
|July||23-33 °||25 °||0-1|
|August||23-34 °||27 °||0-1|
|September||21-31 °||26 °||0-1|
|October||13-25 °||22 °||4-7|
|November||9-20 °||20 °||7-11|
|December||7-15 °||17 °||10-14|
The climate on the Turkish Riviera is Mediterranean between Kemer and Side and subtropical in the district of Alanya. The sun shines on the Turkish Riviera on average more than 300 days a year.
- Summer: Between June and September, the sun shines continuously, it is more than 30 ° C warm, on average, less than one day a month rain falls and the sea reaches 26 °. The summer is therefore clearly the main travel time on the Turkish Riviera.
- Spring: the season starts at the beginning of April with 20 ° + and still a few days with one hour of rain. The weather is improving rapidly with the approaching end of the month and May. The sea reaches 22 to 24 ° and the daytime temperatures rise to 30 °.
- Autumn: October is the most underrated month on the Turkish Riviera. The temperatures are higher than in the preseason in spring, the sea is warmer and there is less rain. Mostly it is 30 ° warm until the end of October.
- Winter: From mid-November, the daily temperature drops to 20 ° and finds its minimum on a few days with 10 to 15 ° in January. Snow fell on the coast for the last time in the 80s. Some rainy days are part of the winter on the Turkish south coast. The pleasant Mediterranean climate attracts many long-term vacationers and emigrants to the Turkish Riviera every year.
More on this: Long-term vacation in Turkey: 15 most frequently asked questions.
Pebble beach on the coast of downtown Kemer
8. Prices and expenses
How much is a holiday on the Turkish Riviera?
The price of a trip differs greatly according to the hotel category. That’s why I’ve collected the typical expenses in a table.
Package tour with all-inclusive 1 week per person in Deoppelzimmer
- from 300 € in the low season
- from 400 € in high season
- more than 500 € in high season in the 4 star hotel
- more than 700 € in a 5 star hotel
Only hotel / accommodation:
- Budget hotel with breakfast: 20 to 30 € per day
- Mid-range hotel with all-inclusive: 30 to 60 € per day
- High-end hotel with all-inclusive: more than 80 € per day
- Hostel: 10 to 20 €
- AirBnB: own room from 10 €
- Return flight to Antalya: 120 to 350 €, depending on season and airline
- Single trip by bus: 0,50 to 1 €
- Airport transfer by shared bus: 5 to 15 €, depending on the airport and seaside resort.
- Taxi to the airport: Private transfer around 60 € to all beach resorts, a taxi is more expensive.
- Day trip, for example Pamukkale: between 40 and 70 € including admission and food, according to season
Food, drinks and other:
- Restaurant in tourist area, main course: 7 to 20 €
- Restaurant locals, main course: 4 to 10 €
- Street food: Simit 30 cents, kebab 1 €, corn on the cob 40 cents,
- Glass of wine in the restaurant: 2 €
- Glass of beer: 2 €
- Cocktail: from 7 €
- Coffee: 2 €
- Bottle of water in the store (1.5L): 30 cents
- Food in the store: around 40% cheaper than in Germany
- Food at the bazaar: Fruits and vegetables are 70% cheaper than in Germany
- Tickets: Ancient ruins 20 to 40TL, museums 5 to 10TL
- Budget: 30 to 50 € per day
- Middle class: 60 to 90 € per day
- High-end: from 90 € per day, on average 130 €
The prices in the table are average values. There are 5 star hotels where standard rooms cost more than 200 € per day (Maxx Royal) and 5 stars all-inclusive hotels in the preseason with a price of 30 € per day (Fame Residence).
Map of the Turkish Riviera, important places and telephone numbers
Get directions ……
- Beach resorts on the Turkish Riviera
An exact map of the beach resorts can be found in the individual tourist guides, with beaches, restaurants, sights, hotels, …
Useful addresses and telephone numbers:
- German Consulate Antalya: +90 242 314 11 01, +90 242 314 11 02
- Emergency doctor Turkey: Tel. 112
- Fire Department Turkey: Tel. 110
- Tourist Police Antalya: Tel. + 90-242-243-0486 (German and English speaking staff who can help in an emergency.)
- Police Turkey: Tel. 155/153
- German Embassy Ankara: +90 312 455 51 00
- Foreign Office – Citizen Service: +49 30 18172000
Düden waterfall in Antalya-Lara
Recommended websites, products and checklist
- HolidayCheck: I always look at the reviews and pictures of travelers on HolidayCheck before booking. With the HolidayCheck price comparison you will find the best offer, together with the current 50 and 100 € cashback promotions.
- Check24.net: Compare also the offers for a package holiday of the German tour operators.
- GetYourGuide: Reviews, description and booking of day trips and airport transfer on the Turkish Riviera.
- Momondo: My favorite flight search site (I found around 90% of my flights to Turkey).
- Tip to save money: With Turkish Lira you pay a smaller price everywhere in Turkey. The 1 plus Visa Card of Santander Bank costs no renewal fees, you can withdraw my money without expenses in Turkey and pay with the card. So you do not have to take so much cash and you save the change of the whole travel cash in Turkish Lira.
- Travel Guide: I know all the books, here are my favorites for the Turkish Riviera:
Checklist for a trip to Turkey for printing
Here is the link to my checklist and packing list for a trip to Turkey. It’s about preparing well for a holiday in Turkey and having everything in your suitcase.
I formatted the lists in addition to saving, printing and checking off.
My conclusion to the Turkish Riviera
The Turkish Riviera is the most popular of the three holiday regions on the south coast of Turkey.
Compared to the Turkish Aegean and Lycian coast, there are significantly more offers for package holidays and direct flights from Germany.
At the same time, there is a good selection of reasonably priced beach hotels and outstanding high-class hotels.
The excellent weather and the short arrival time make the Turkish Riviera interesting as a summer destination. The ancient ruins, the Taurus Mountains and the Turkish inner cities are also interesting sights.
For a package holiday in Turkey, the Turkish Riviera is my clear recommendation.
I hope that my guide will help you with the selection of the beach resort, the travel planning, the booking and during your stay.
If you have any questions, then write me down in the comments.
Have fun on the Turkish Riviera!