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11 things to do in Antalya, Turkey

11 things to do in Antalya, Turkey

If you’re planning a holiday to Antalya in Turkey and you want some excitement outside of your hotel resort then I’ve got you covered! There are so many things to do in Antalya, whether you love nature, culture, history, food or picture-perfect towns.

Most people who visit will do so on package holidays to Antalya. My visit was a press trip with Jet2 and I stayed at Titanic Deluxe Golf Belek which was gorgeous and I highly recommend it. It was enormous and felt more like a village than a resort! If you’re looking for a relaxing holiday then you’d be more than happy staying within the resort, but if you’re looking for more of an adventure then here are some of the best things to do in Antalya…

Things to do in Antalya - Staying at Titanic Deluxe Golf Belek

1. Explore Antalya Old Town 

Antalya Old Town

Antalya Old Town is one of those places where you just need to wander and get lost and enjoy the gorgeous charm of the place. It’s so pretty with lots of bars, restaurants and boutique shops.

Travel Hack Tip: Make sure you’re around for sunset for the prettiest views across to the mountains. I’d recommend arriving in the afternoon so you have plenty of time to walk around, then pick a good spot for sunset drinks looking across the sea.

Here are some places to plot into Google Maps so you don’t miss them:

  • Visit Hadrian’s Gate: A well-preserved Roman triumphal arch, built in honour of the Emperor Hadrian’s visit to Antalya in the 2nd century AD.
Things to do in Antalya - explore antalya old town
  • Yivli Minare Mosque: This iconic mosque, with its unique fluted minaret, is one of the most recognizable landmarks in Antalya. Dating back to the 13th century, the Yivli Minare Mosque is a fine example of Seljuk architecture and is still used for worship today.
  • Clock Tower: Situated in the heart of Kaleici, the Clock Tower is a symbol of Antalya’s historic center. Originally built during the Ottoman period, the tower offers panoramic views of the surrounding area and is a popular meeting point for locals and tourists alike.
  • Antalya Archaeological Museum: Home to an impressive collection of artifacts spanning thousands of years of history. 
  • Hidirlik Tower: Roman-era fortification
  • Tekeli Mehmet Pasa Mosque: known for its exquisite tile work.
Seraser Restaurant in Antalya old town

2. Take the cable car

If you want the best view in Antalya then you need to take the cable car to the top of Tunektepe, a hill on the west side of Antalya. The cable car takes you over 5,000ft high and it’s a beautiful, 9-minute journey to the top. 

3. Visit the waterfalls

Things to do in Antalya - visit Lower Duden Waterfall

There are a few waterfalls in Antalya and the most popular ones to visit are:

  • Lower Duden Waterfall
  • Kursunlu Waterfalls
  • Upper Duden Waterfalls

The waterfalls are quite spread out so I’d recommend booking a tour or a taxi for the day to see them. Lower Duden Waterfall is often included in other day tours visiting the area.

The Travel Hack Things to do in Antalya

4. Go to Land of Legends

Things to do in Antalya - Land of Legends

If you’re on holiday with kids then one of the best things to do in Antalya is Land of Legends.

Land of Legends is an enormous theme park and entertainment complex spanning over 63 hectares. There’s a waterpark with slides, pools, and a wave pool, a theme park with rides and mesmerising shows, such as the Kingdom of Poseidon and Legends of Aqua. 

Visitors can explore the shopping avenue, go to the 5D cinema and dine at one of the many restaurants. 

I visited Nemo restaurant, an incredible place with enormous fish tanks all around. It feels like an underwater aquarium! It was amazing to dine in an enormous fish tank but the food was also delicious and the service was great fun. I highly recommend this restaurant for an unforgettable family meal!

Things to do in Antalya - Nemo restaurant
Things to do in Antalya - Land of Legends

5. Take a trip to the pretty town of Side

Things to do in Antalya - visit side

Side (pronounced See-deh) was the prettiest place I visited in Antalya. It was gorgeous and had this lovely chilled, seaside vibe.

Not only is Side pretty but it’s also really interesting because virtually the entire place is an archaeological site filled with ancient ruins (apparently Cleopatra loved it here!) They’re slowly excavating so many areas to reveal ancient buildings. When they find something interesting, they cover it with strong glass so you can walk over it and view everything and the ruins can be incorporated into modern life.

Side also has beautiful beaches, a pretty harbour and lots of lovely places to eat and drink.

Things to do in Antalya Side
Things to do in Antalya - Side
Things to do in Antalya - Visit the charming town of side
Things to do in Antalya - beach at side
Azumare Lounge in Side

6. Relax on Konyaalti Beach or Lara Beach

Konyaalti Beach and Lara Beach are the two biggest and most popular beaches in Antalya. Spend a day soaking up the sun on the sandy shores, enjoying views of the Mediterranean Sea and the surrounding mountains.

7. Explore Aspendos

Aspendos is an ancient city known for its incredibly well-preserved Roman theatre and aqueduct. 

The theatre was constructed in the 2nd century AD and it’s known for its acoustics and grandeur. It once hosted theatrical performances and gladiatorial contests and you can go inside and sit in the places people would have sat hundreds of years ago! The picturesque Roman aqueduct spans across the countryside and is well worth a visit upclose.

8. Take a Boat Tour

A popular day trip in Antalya is a cruise along the stunning coastline. Many of the boat tours will allow you to stop and swim in secluded coves and explore hidden caves.

9. Explore Termessos

Unfortunately it was rainy on the day I’d planned to visit Termessos (I visited in February) so our trip was cancelled but it looks incredible. The ancient city of Termessos is nestled in the Taurus Mountains and you can hike among the well-preserved ruins of this once-thriving civilization. Definitely something for me to go back for!

Travel Hack Tip: Turkey is a great place for a winter sun holiday with jet2holidays. During my trip I had one day of rain but the rest of the trip was sunny, bright and warm. Just make sure you’ve got a hotel with a heated pool (the unheated swimming pools are way too cold for me in the winter!) It was also nice to have a big spa where I could happily spend a rainy day!

10. Visit Perge

This to do in Antalya

I’d recommend taking a tour to explore the ancient ruins of Perge,a city originally founded by the Hittites around 1500 BCE. Perge was later under Greek and Roman rule and you can now see an incredibly well-preserved theatre, stadium, and agora, as well as fascinating little things like ancient graffiti!

11. Eat all the Turkish food

ALL the food! Turkish food is amazing and you’re probably going to need to get out of your resort to get the best of it.

These are some of my favourite places I ate during my trip:

Most meals start with a cold starter, so this is your meze with fresh bread and lots of dips. And then you’ll have a hot starter, then a main and, if you’ve got space left, a desert!

My trip details

I had flights to Antalya with Jet2 from Manchester. I really recommend jet2holidays for holidays to Turkey, actually I recommend them for holidays anywhere. Jet2 fangirl over here!