Fethiye, which was called Telmessos in Lycian period, is
a Mediterranean city located around the bay named after itself on
the slopes of the Mendosa mountain. In 1934 it was called Fethiye
in the memory of the first Turkish pilot Fethi Bey.
Dry, long and hot summers, rainy, warm and short-time
winters are the climatic characteristics of Fethiye. The temperature
in summer is 30-40 degrees and in winter is usually above 10 degrees.
It is possible to swim in to the turquoise coloured water during
nine months of the year.
Due to the climate conditions in the region the pinery
formed from white pine, larch and ponderosa space large place.
Olive, Sweetgum, Laurel, Myrtle, Sycamore, Poplar, Acacia are
the other tree species of this rich vegetation. For 10 million years
Sweetgum plant which has survived and came from before the ice
ages, is only grown in Fethiye and Koycegiz region and in a small
area of California on Earth.
Fethiye is an important settlement since prehistoric period.
In ancient times Lycians, who were “The People of the Light
Dormitory”, were the owner of the city and the city was called Telmessos.
Telmessos (Fethiye), which entered in the sovereignty of the
Persians in 545 BC (6th century), was surrendered to Alexander the
Great in 333 BC (4th century). Although after the death of Alexander
the Great Telmessos had been under the sovereignty of Egypt King
Ptalomus for a while, then it was occupied by Roman Empire and
the name of the city was mentioned as Megri (Makri) that means
“Far Realm”. After dividing of Roman Empire into two parts Fethiye
(Megri) was located within the Eastern Roman / Byzantine Empire
boundaries. In 1282 Mr. Mentese who is the founder of the Mentese
Principality, bereaved Megri from Byzantines. In 1424 it participated
in Ottoman Empire.
Megri (Mekri), which was mentioned as five districts
among the people in Ottoman period, was transformed into a district
connected to Mentese Shire. With the establishment of Republic
in 1934 the name of the district was changed to Fethiye for the
memory of Mr. Fethi who is one of our first pilot and died as a martyr
in a plain accident near Teberiye after taking off from Damascus in
Fethiye Archeological Museum
Valuable works of art from Early Lycian, Persian, Hellenistic, Roman
and Ottoman periods are exhibited. The Museum is open to visitors
every day except Mondays where the interesting examples of the
rich cultural heritage of Fethiye are located in the ethnography
section. In the museum’s garden, environmental and landscaping
works were completed and was opened to visitors in 2008.
The Ancient City of Lycia –Telmessos
In ancient times Lycian was called country of the lights
that was located on the Teke peninsula between Antalya and Fethiye.
The Lyceans, who are known with their own language, matriarchal
way of life, rock monuments, tombs, addiction to their freedom
and independence, were recorded in the history in the Anatolian
Union defenders in Kadesh against Egyptians and in Troy against
The name of Fethiye in Lycian period is Telmessos.
In the written sources it is stated that the city was named
after the son of God Apollon, Telmessos. In the continuous
process of life it was under the management of Persians,
Rome and Byzantines from 5th century BC. However it was
able to protect its’ original structure.
In Fethiye the most splendid work of art that has
survived from the ancient city Telmessos is the rock tomb
which was built in the name of Amintas, the son of Hermapios,
in 4th century BC that looks like a temple in the Ionic order.
In 1850’s famous traveler Charles Texier wrote his name
on the tomb that can be seen at the entrance. The sarcophagus
type of tombs, which are accepted as the elite examples
of Lycian art and stone labor, exhibit distinct beauty of
Fethiye’s urban configuration. Especially the examples in the
garden of Government House, in Necropolis and across the
pier are remarkable.
The Theatre was rebuilt with Roman style in the 2nd century on the theatre which was built in Hellenistic period and destroyed by the earthquakes.
It was planned for a capacity of about 6.000 people. The excavation works of the theatre were completed with the studies of Fethiye
Archaeological Museum and a project has been prepared for the restoration. The structure has remained in the city of today.
Kale (The Castle)
It was built right next to the Necropolis and at the top of the hill dominating the city in the 11th century. Fethiye Municipality is
also carrying on the restoration works for this structure.
Xanthos is the administrative center of Lycian Federation. It is
60 km away from Fethiye and is within the boundaries of the Kinik
Village. The establishment of it is dated to 1200 BC. The Acropolis
from Lycian period, the theatre from Roman period, the church from
Christian period and the remains of city gate from Hellenistic period
can be seen from this important city which was the scene of a mass
suicide for the sake of independence and freedom. The “Nereid Monument”
carried away from the city in 1838 and other significant Lycian
period remains are exhibited in the British Museum in London.
Letoon is 55 km away from Fethiye and in the boundaris of
Kumluova District. It is the religious center of the Lycian, where
the legend was lived about bringing in to the world of Artemis and
Apollo by Goddess Leto and three major temples dedicated to them
are located. The archaeological excavations carried out since 1962
has proved that the history of the city based on the 8th century BC.
The theatre belonging to the Hellenistic period has survived as undamaged
to the present.
Cadianda is near to the Uzumlu District that is 20 km away from Fethiye. The excavation
work was carried out by the Fethiye Archaeological Museum and sport complex, theater,
mausoleum and the agora are the main ruins reached to present.
Oineanda is an important ancient city which was established in Incealiler village 88 km
away from Fethiye. About three hundred written tablets belonging to the ancient period
were found there.
Araxa is 40 km away from the city center and is within the
boundries of Oren District. The city walls from Byzantine period,
baths, aqueducts, amphi-theater and rock tombs from Lycian period
can be seen. Oren is also one of our spectacular village with its magnificent
canyon, nature, trout ponds and country restaurants.
Sidyma is one of the most important Lycian cities, which is 55
km away from Fethiye, is near the today’s Dodurga Village and was
built on the slopes of Taurus. A small theater, cisterns, a temple, the
ruins of a bath and a lot of magnificent sarcophaguses can be seen
Rock Village has an importance as the place of an uninterrupted life where different cultures extending from ancient Karmylassos
to the present day are united with each other and also stayed and immigrated. On the slopes there are stone houses built as a typical
Mediterranean architecture example without interrupting the light of each other, churches, schools, chapels, workshops, other structures
and interconnecting narrow streets which are in the form of architectural laboratory. In accordance with the Treaty of Lausanne signed
between Turkish-Greek Governments, as a result of population exchange the Greeks living in Rock Village and Turks living in Western Thracia
exchanged but because of the failure of Turkish immigrants to adopt the lifestyle in the village, the process showing today’s abondonment
view began. Kaya carpets weaved with unique colors and obtained by the technique of madder of Rock Village are famous.
Bays and Beaches
Calis Beach, which is 5 km away from Fethiye town center, is
one of the most important accommodation and entertainment centers
of the region. Just across the beach Knight Island is located that can be
considered as an
entrence door to the Fethiye Port. As well as the municipal
buses and minibuses there is also a sea transportation facility
with small boats to Calis Beach and they provide great convenience to
vacationers. Calis Beach, which is one the most important nesting area
of Caretta Caretta turtles, includes Calis Nature Park-Birds Heaven with
so far 219 species identified.
Ölüdeniz Belceğiz Beach
Oludeniz (Blue Lagoon), which is called “paradise bestowed by God to the world” in tourism literature, is a tourism center with a
worldwide reputation. Oludeniz is a World Wonder with its’ pine forest up to the beach, warm sea and for miles of stunning beach. Oludeniz
consists of two parts: the first part is Belcekiz or Belcegiz part extending from bay to lagoon. This part is the floating part of Oludeniz.
The second part is the real Oludeniz part where the lagoon is located. This section is calm and shallow. Additionally Oludeniz is one
of the world’s most ideal place for paragliding.
Although it has not any coast, it is preferred because of its’
fresh air due to the altitude and its’ location close to both Fethiye
and Oludeniz. After 19:00 o’clock in the evenings a few streets in
Hisaronu center is closed to vehicular traffic and transformed into a
public recreation center.
“Butterfly Valley” is one of the most beautiful bays of
Fethiye and is located at the base of a steep and deep valley on a
ten hectares plateau. In the valley where the sea level butterflies
of Mediterranean can be seen in one view like in an open-air museum,
it is also possible to monitor the the life cycle of 30 species
of day butterfly and 40 species of night butterfly starting from
the spring during nine-ten months. It is possible to reach to the
Butterfly Valley with a service boat departing from Oludeniz with
a half hour journey. It is also possible to go to the Butterfly Valley
through a difficult walk from Faralya or through flying with parapente
from Baba (Father) Mountain that is 1975 meters height.
There is not any accommodation facility in the valley.
Because it was declared as a first degree natural protected area in
1995 and therefore the construction is not allowed. It is possible
to spend the night in tents or in sleeping bags you will bring or
under the wooden pergola covered with leaves. It is also possible
to take advantage of the small rural restaurant for your eating-
In the Gulf of Fethiye the bays and islands located around Gocek
offer an enjoyable nature and history tour to the blue cruises.
Knight Island (Old Megri)
The island located at the north of Fethiye Port has a strategic importance
since ancient times with its location that can control the entrance
to the port. It is known that the Rhodes’ knights kept the city under their
control for a long time with the castle they had built on the island. It is understood
from the ruins that the island was used in Late Roman period and
today on the island the city walls, houses, ancient cisterns and variety of
mosaics of this castle can be seen.
On the southern tip of the island there is not any structure except a light tower that organizes the sea traffic and the house of guard.
On the north west of the island large and small rocks (Deliktas Islands) are very suitable for diving and fishing enthusiasts. The east coast of
Red Island closed to the waves is a bay which has a wide beach and is suitable for swimming and anchoring. Due to these advantages the
blue cruises and daily tour bouts visit the island.
The island is located opposite of the Katranci bay which is one of the most important camping site of the county and it was named
after here. The sides of the island is not very suitable for docking of vessels but is indispensable for fish lovers.
Yassica Islands consist of 5 large and small islands where the tour boats stayed for the longest time. The northern tip of the main island
that extends to the direction of South - North is a beach and it is ideal for swimming. The region is an entertainment center with a range of
Shipyard Island is the biggest island in the region. There are alot of ruins of buildings on the island which are dated to the early
Roman period with Mediterranean architecture features. It is called Shipyard Island because in the past there was a shipyard on the island
where the construction, repair and maintenance facilities of the small vessels were performed. At the present day a few families dealing with
livestock and agriculture live on the island that is visited frequently by 12 islands tour groups. Additionally it is the safest place in the region
for yachtsmen with its’ small but cozy restaurant serving ashore and its’ two separate sheltered bay called Summer Port and Winter Port by
Pigs (Prince) Island
The island was named after the wild pigs living on the island and
due to last owner it is called Prince Island. The island is like a private
property that does not have a port for boats to dock. There are some
ruins around the island extending to the sea and some of them can
be seen under the sea.
On this peninsula surrounded the west side of the Fethiye Port there
are many beautiful bays where the sea and pine trees fair like Aksazlar,
Samanlik, Kuleli and Boncuklu. These bays which can be ranged
through 7 kilometer road on the peninsula, are the most popular
recreation spot prefered by inhabitants. This road is also an ideal
track for hiking enthusiasts.
This bay was named after bitter orange trees and fresh water spring
and is a haunt of yachtsmen. The fisherman restaurant is the favorite
of the gourmets where all types of seafood is sensitively prepared
and presented. It is also possible to reach to the bay through walk
way starting from Rock Village and it is an ideal place for daily recreation
with its’ beach and clean sea.
Günlüklü (Small Kargi)
Günlüklü is a resting place in the forest covered with indigenous dense frankincense (sweetgum) trees. It is in a different position in our touristic diversity
with its’ unique beauties, beach and infrastructure prepared for camping. It is on the Mugla-Fethiye highway and it is possible to reach with
This Bay is for a day of resting place and tented camping area in the forest that is surrounded by large and small bays and with merged dense
pine trees with sea. It is one of our most important and attractive tourism center with its’ nature and beach where all kinds of services are
provided to the vacationers.
Ships Bay and Island
You can pass to St. Nicholas located opposite of the Gemiler (Ships) Bay with a boat and can see the ruins from Byzantine period. In accordance
with the ruins found during excavation works in 1990 that was began by archaeological experts from Japan with Fethiye Museum, it is
understood that the island was an important visiting center in early Christian period and sea saint Nicholas had lived here.
Folklore of Fethiye
The unique culture of the Teke peninsula makes folkloric structure quite interesting. The folk dance, folk music, folk literature and
especially social behaviour including plateau migration and nomadic culture have differences from the other parts of Mediterranean and
Aegean. The light comedy performances exhibited in Seki-Temel-Ceylan villages are typical examples of this.
The work of arts of the local culture and folkloric and ethnographic values are exhibited in Nomad Culture Museum in Yaniklar and
in nomad tent in Calis Beach where the nomad culture is kept alive.
• (The Turkish traditional names of the foods are stated in the paranthesises)
• Pounded Chicken/Meat and Wheat (Keskek).
• Cracked Wheat Pilaf (Bulgur Pilavı)
• Meaty Dried Bean – Meaty Chickpea (Etli Kuru Fasulye - Etli Nohut)
• Crumpets in Thick Syrup (Pasta Dessert -Ekmek kadayifi)
• Dried Fruit Compote (Hoşaf)
• Sour Bean (Eksili Fasulye)
• Dry Vegetable Meal (Kuru Sebze Yemegi)
• Fresh Green Peas In Olive Oil (Zeytinyağlı Taze Bezelye)
• Fava Bean In Olive Oil (Zeytinyağlı Bakla)
• Artichoke In Olive Oil (Zeytinyağlı Enginar)
• Special Stuffed Mutton Balls (Kiris)
• Stuffed Chard (Pazı Dolmasi)
• Milky Yellow Grass (Sutlu Sari Ot)
• Daily Fried Vegetables With Yoghurt (Gunluk Yogurtlama)
• Sprout of Gum Tree and Vine With Yoghurt (Sakızağacı Filizi Ve Asma Filizi Yoğurtlaması)
• Sprout of Gum Tree and Vine With Bulgur (Bulgurlu Sakız Ağacı Filizi Ve Asma Filizi Yemeği)
• Stuffed Sweetgum Leaf (Sığla Yaprağından Dolma)
• Black Berry Grass with Yoghurt (Sılcan Yoğurtlaması)