SIDE – the fairytale island guarded by Taurus Mountains

by Oana Silviana
1 comment

I think you are here not because of a pure curiosity, but to discover fairytale stories more or less crossed by the step of the tourist.

Side I think speaks about classic. And I am saying this because you will discover here a strong cultural mix of architectural styles, tradition, history and stories from antiquity. In other words, Side is a true outdoor museum.

The small ancient Greek town on the southern coast of Turkey is one of the most famous historical settlements, located between Manavgat and the village of Selimiye, at 78 kilometers away from Antalya.

Whether you are staying in Antalya or in other resort, you can visit Side if you rent a car or you take one of the Turkish minibuses (called dolmus) that transport tourists between resorts.

Because Side was very close to the resort I stayed in, I chose to take a walk on the beach to arrive in Side. This was a more beautiful way than by car, because it makes you see the mix of styles in Turkey.  The opulence and the luxury offered by the all inclusive resorts contrasts with the old walls of the fortress.

From the seashore, you will have a beautiful panoramic view of the Taurus Mountains, that are watching the town.

Following the beach trail, you reach in a few minutes towards narrow streets, colorful terraces, hospitable merchants who urge you to buy a small souvenir or invite you to eat and taste the Turkish or the Mediterranean dishes. The buildings are in a big contrast with the ruins of the old city, and the commercial combines with the antiquity and with the old stories. You will always find here indicators that guide you and tell you what it was in the past in these places.

The Temple of Athens is located in the port and the great Roman Theater is located at the opposite end of the city. The steps take you to the Temple of Apollo, and the 35-minute walk makes you stop from place to place to discover traditions, old customs, and the handicraft of locals who do not forget their origins.

Among colorful materials, streets sealed by the sea and the smiles of the locals, you reach the port. The Temple of Apollo and the goddess Athena welcomes you dignified. Both are built entirely of marble and decorated in the style of the old Corinth. They were built in the 2nd century AD, and at that time they had no more, no less than 11 columns arranged on each side. The process of restoration of the temples is still in progress today.

A nice experience is a walk through ruins at night when there are illuminated. If you get here at sunset, you will admire a multitude of colors that hit the temple, and the atmosphere changes during the evening as the market square becomes cramped with tourists.

You can walk through the ruins, you can dine at one of the taverns in the harbor or you can simply admire the view.

Side is guarded by two beautiful beaches that have a total of 30 kilometers, and to the east the beach is quieter and continues up to the island of Manavgat, another attraction near Side.

I’ll let you admire the sunset in Side, recommending you to get here at least once, I guarantee you have a lot to see!

Be a Fairytale Traveler in this little town on the southern coast of the Mediterranean!

See you soon!

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1 comment

Saint Facetious August 15, 2017 - 7:57 am

It looks like I’d prefer Side to Antalya. I wish I knew about it when I was there in Antalya! Antalya can get a bit over-the-top.


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