Kas is not only Antalya’s but one of Turkey’s most loved vacation spots. At the edge of the province, Kas is 190 kilometers from the provincial capital. Surrounding an old harbor, Kas evokes the feeling of a quaint coastal town. And with its 70 kilometers of coastline, is a real touristic paradise. But not only for a sun, sand, and sea kind of holiday, with its ancient cities and rich history, your trip to Kas is sure to be a cultural journey as well.
With its natural wonders, Kas is number one for water sports and diving in Turkey. Offering its visitors with outdoor sports like trekking, mountaineering, paragliding, wind surfing, rafting, and many other opportunities, Kas is after the hearts of athletes and adventurers.
Kas enchants you with its view before you even reach the town. As for some more information about Kas: the Cukurbag Peninsula, the Greek island of Castellorizo just across the water, the Inceburun and Uluburun Peninsulas, the latter of which is home to an ancient shipwreck which is currently on display in the Bodrum Underwater Archeology Museum… Kas: a town where a whole lot of history has been squeezed into a small, compact space.
Kas Travel Guide
With its many shops, Kas can be split in two. The shops, restaurants, and bars surrounding Cumhuriyet Square are the beating heart of Kas and are always lively. With all the different activities available and its many shops, it’s easy to enjoy your time in Kas.
The main square is the heart of the old town of Kas, the center from which life flows along small and quaint backstreets. With the shops and flower-covered houses lining its most famous street, Uzun Carsi, Kas steals the hearts of visitors. It’s home to unmatched natural beauty, cultural heritage, and a style all its own.
You came to Kas, settled into your hotel, had dinner and some nighttime fun. What about the other days? The things you can do in Kas doesn’t stop there of course. Kas offers something to please everyone of every age. You can reach turquoise coves with beautiful water in all shades of blue that aren’t accessible over land on a boat trip. You can explore underwater wonders while diving.
If you’d like to experience some excitement and see the enchanting beauty of Kas from above, paragliding is perfect for you. In addition, you’ll find different activities such as jeep safari tours and sea kayaking.
In Kas, one of Turkey’s hottest regions, even in January and February the water temperature never falls below 16 degrees Celsius.
The closest beach to Kas is Small Pebble Beach, located just east of the harbor where boat trips depart from and now home to many hotels and guesthouses. You can jump into the sea from the platforms located just in front of the hotels and guesthouses of Small Pebble.
Another beach called Big Pebble Beach is located just 1 km from the town center. You can easily walk or take a minibus there. Thanks to the cold freshwater springs around the beach, the water at Big Pebble is colder than others. This beach is a little bigger than Small Pebble beach and has restaurants and facilities on it. It’s a good place to spend the day with your family.
Limanagzi Beach is located in Kas and is home to more than one beach. Since there is no road running to Limanagzi, you’ll have to take one of the small boats that leave from Kas every 15 minutes to get here. Hidayet Cove, Incebogaz Beach, and Akcagerme Beach are the other options in Kas.
The most fun activities in Kas are boat trips. Choose one of our favorite and most loved boat trips; we guarantee you’ll love it. Our most popular tours are our Kekova boat tours departing from Kas.
Other tours you’ll enjoy are our Castellorizo Island Boat Tour, Kaputas Blue Cave, Kalkan Boat Tour, and Aperlai Tour. We also arrange Moonlight Tours, Dinner Tours, Sunset Tours, and special tours for all your celebrations.
What to See in Kas
1. Downtown Kas
The thing most people think of when they think of downtown Kas is Uzun Carsi Street, but there are actually quite a few rows of sloping streets near the coast that make up Kas’s downtown shopping area. Made up of traditional two-story houses with bay windows and rows of small shops underneath, these streets are decorated with bougainvillea draping down from balconies presenting a friendly and inviting atmosphere.
Downtown consists of shops selling souvenirs and textiles, garden restaurants, quaint cafes, and small boutique hotels. The souvenir shops are so enticing, you’ll love spending time inside and it will be difficult to choose what to buy.
Souvenirs featuring local sea turtles are some of the most popular. They sell coasters, T-shirts, pillowcases, bags, hats, and a wide variety of souvenirs with pictures of sea turtles.
Before going out to explore Kas’s wonderful beaches, be sure to hit up one of the breakfast cafes on Uzun Carsi. Just follow the smell of homemade cake and fresh pastries. First have breakfast under the shade of the ivy in a garden, then sip your Turkish coffee.
After breakfast, it’s time to enjoy our stunning beaches. You take the minibuses that depart from just next to the square to get there. You can reach any beach in Kas with a minibus. If you came with your own car, you’ll be accompanied by amazing views along the way. If you don’t have a car, you can get in touch with one of the car rental places downtown.
If you come back to town for lunch you’ll find an option to suit any budget. You’ll find any number of traditional Turkish or international dishes in the restaurants downtown. From traditional home cooking to chic fish restaurants, pizza and burgers, no matter what you’re in the mood for, you’ll find the best of it in Kas. But we recommend trying a salad made from wild greens picked around Kas; the seafood here is always fresh and delicious.
Most restaurants offer outdoor, garden seating and are decorated with bougainvillea, a Kas classic. The soft music playing in these courtyards is as enticing as the smells coming from the kitchen. If you’d like to relax after dinner and listen to music, there are many places with live music downtown. Or you can grab a coffee at one of Kas’s modern coffee shops.
If you’re thinking of staying in Kas itself, boutique hotels and guesthouses are located in the main downtown area. You can get from dinner back to you hotel in no more than five minutes. We love how easy it is to get around Kas. Our guests love it too considering that they keep coming back season after season.
You can’t talk about downtown without mentioning how fun and colorful local celebrations are here. Turkish Independence Day (October 29th) is especially lively. We cover the square and even Uzun Carsi Street with tables and chairs decorated with flags. Preparations begin a few days before the main event.
We make homemade sweets, iron our best tablecloths, prepare plates and cups, and cook our best dishes. These exciting preparations continue all day. Around seven in the evening we set the tables and turn up the music to let our guests know that we’re ready. The fun starts with the sound of drums and pipes.
Kas is like a bride during the holidays. Even foreign visitors can’t help but dance along to the traditional rhythms. We sing folk songs, sit at the tables we all helped to set, and enjoy the holiday spirit together.
If you’re going to visit Kas in autumn, you should definitely not miss the celebrations on October 29th. You’ll experience the traditional Turkish holiday experience that’s so hard to find these days.
2. Small Pebble Beach
Just a five minute walk from downtown Kas, Small Pebble Beach is, as its name suggests, a very small beach open to the public. Walk uphill along Uzun Carsi and pass the King’s Tomb. Just ahead, you’ll see a small, ivy-covered entryway to the right. Walk downhill to Kas’s smallest and most loved beach: Small Pebble.
There are only a couple meters between the sea and the stairs. It looks more like a miniature valley hidden between two cliffs. The beach is covered in small pebbles and the sea is bright blue. If you come early in the morning, you might even have the whole beach to yourselves. The water isn’t usually wavy, so families with small children can spend some safe and enjoyable time here.
If you follow the paths up the cliffs, you’ll see some private beaches as well. You’ll find sunbeds and umbrellas at these private beaches right next to Small Pebble. Most also serve food and drinks. You can jump out of the sea and right over to lunch.
Small Pebble is nice year-round. Even in winter, you can spread your towel over the pebbles of Small Pebble, bring your book, and lose yourself in the sun and the sound of the sea. The beach doesn’t get much wind since it’s so enclosed.
3. Big Pebble Beach
Big Pebble Beach is another alternative for those who want to swim close to Kas. The beach is just 1.3 km from town, or just a 20 minute walk. If you keep walking past Small Pebble, you’ll run into it. It’s in the middle of a wide valley surrounded by green trees and brush. Both sides of the bay are surrounded by low cliffs.
The most distinctive feature of Big Pebble is the freshwater mountain springs that feed into it. This clean water lowers the temperature of the sea making it a bit cool. But it doesn’t matter. With its crystal clear water, beautiful view from above, and accessible location, Big Pebble is one of the jewels of Kas.
There are six restaurants lining the bay. They offer sunbeds and umbrellas. You can also put your towel down wherever you want. You’re not required to rent a sunbed or umbrella. For an extra level of pleasure you can lay down on a sunbed and place your order. They’ll bring anything you want to you on a platter. And these restaurants don’t have a minimum amount you have to spend.
Big Pebble Beach is covered in pebbles and sometimes our guests don’t like walking over these pebbles. If you have sensitive feet too we recommend you bring some water shoes. If you forget to pack a pair you can find them at the shops on Uzun Carsi Street.
You can walk to Big Pebble, but if you don’t want to walk you can also catch one of the minibuses that run there.
4. Kaputas Beach
One of the Mediterranean’s most precious jewels and the world’s most captivating beaches, Kaputas Beach can be reached on a 20 minute journey on the winding yet beautiful road running from Kas to Kalkan. Located just 7 km from Kalkan, this beach has a set of stairs running down to it.
Each of the approximately 200 steps draws you closer to the natural wonders of its white-foamed waves and bright blue water. The secret of the beach’s turquoise color is the ground water that seeps through the coastal sand. This beach is wavy and cool for the same reason. The golden color of its sand complements its tones of blue perfectly.
There’s a government-run restaurant on the beach. They offer sunbeds and umbrellas for rent and serve food and drinks. The restaurant section offers lots of options. Hamburgers, pizza, sandwiches, flatbreads, ice cream, hot and cold drinks, and seasonal fruit… The prices are also reasonable. You can also bring your own food but the stairs are already tiring and having to carry something might make you even more tired.
Found near Kaputas Beach and discovered in 1972, the Blue Cave is 18 kilometers from Kas. Once home to seals, this cave measures 50 meters in length, 40 meters in width, and 15 meters in height. Because of its narrow entrance, the rays of sun bouncing off of the sea floor create unbelieve plays of light. There is no overland access to this cave; you can visit it on one of the boat tours that depart from Kas.
Limanagzi is another of Kas’s beautiful beaches. You can reach Limanagzi in about 15 minutes on one of the boats that leave from the town center every 30 minutes. It’s a great option for those who don’t want to jump into the sea off of rocks. Home to boats during summer, this adorable place is also a natural protected area and a ‘Blue Flag’ beach.
In addition to enjoying the sea, you can hike on the Lycian Way and see the ancient city of Sebeda along the way. Another place near Limanagzi worth seeing is the Hidirellez Cave, where groundwater surfaces.
If you want to swim and spend the day at Limanagzi, you can take advantage of one of the famous Nuri’s Beach, Delos Beach, Port Beach, or Bilal Beach restaurants. The oldest of these is Nuri’s. They generally serve you on sunbeds or canopies placed on wooden platforms. You can rent a bungalow if you want to stay overnight.
Each of these restaurants has a minimum amount that you must spend. The price of the sunbeds you rent and the food that you eat goes towards that amount. The small boats that run between Kas and Limanagzi every 30 minutes start at 7:00 am and continue until 9:00 pm.
6. Cukurbag Peninsula
Cukurbag is the best place for those looking for a holiday full of peace and quiet. Located 6 km from Kas, the Cukurbag Peninsula is covered with boutique hotels and villas on all sides. The lack of artificial lights at night makes it a good place to watch the stars.
The natural harbor of Bucak and a new marina are found between the road to Kalkan and the peninsula which, with its calm coves used as stopover points by yachts, presents the opportunity for guests to enjoy a relaxing holiday.
7. Incebogaz Beach
Located at the most narrow point on the road to the Cukurbag Peninsula looking out to the Bucak Harbor, Incebogaz is the perfect place to swim, especially in the spring. Home to high temperatures and calm water, the side of this beach that faces Castellorizo has cooler water with more waves.
8. Akcagerme Beach
Akcagerme Beach, a public beach with calm water, is preferred by families with small children. Akcagerme is a calm and shallow bay with emerald green water. Located near the road between Kas and Kalkan, this beach is even quiet during high season. They don’t play loud music.
The business here is run by the students of the Kas Hotel and Tourism Trade High School. This beach is home to pools, slides, and parks for children along with a restaurant also run by the students. You can reach Akcagerme (4 km away) with one of the minibuses that depart from the center of Kas.
9. Seyrekcakil Beach
Located 12 km from Kas on the road between Kas and Kalkan, the area surrounding Seyrekcakil Beach is forested and pristine. It’s near Kaputas Beach. There are no touristic facilities, restaurants, bathrooms, or showers on this beach. It’s usually used for camping, tents, and camper vans or RVs. Since it’s located right under the main road, the lucky drivers who notice it stop for a swim break.
Kekova is one of Kas’s most precious places. Placed under special protection, Kekova is also one of Turkey’s best places for diving. Kekova, a long, thin, protected island across from Teimiussa (Ucagiz) and Simena (Kale), is home to the cleanest water in not only Antalya but in almost the entire Mediterranean.
Home to the only Sunken City in Turkey, Kekova is only accessible via the sea. You can visit Kekova on the boats that run from Kas daily.
Its name first mentioned in ancient sources from the 4th century BCE, Simena (modern day Kalekoy) is home to an unmatched atmosphere thanks to its spectacular castle. One of Turkey’s most beautiful villages, Kalekoy was built on a rocky section of coastline. The only way to get to the village is by boat which has kept its traditional feel alive.
From the castle you can see the stone tombs north of the castle, inscriptions written in Lycian, a jetty, and the remains of buildings in addition to the baths dedicated to Emperor Vespasian. The small theatre carved into the stone of the castle is the most interesting ruin in the area. A large necropolis is found to the north of the castle.
The area known as Tersane Bay is good for swimming and with its apse belonging to a Byzantine basilica is rich in archeologic remains.
The modern-day village of Ucagiz was built on top of the small ancient Lycian harbor city Teimiussa and can be reached by boats departing from Kas or Finike. One of the areas in Kekova protected for both its natural and archeologic value, Teimiussa’s history begins earlier than the 4th century BCE.
Many tombs and coastal roads and walkways are found in Teimiussa. The ruins of the sunken city on the northwestern coast of Kekova, which protected Teimiussa and Simena from the Mediterranean Sea, served as a shelter for sailors, and was used in the construction and repair of ships, appears to have been used as a trade and military base since the 5th century BCE.
There are underwater Lycian-type sarcophagi in the sunken city. You can get fairly close with a boat and see the traces of the underwater city. Diving in the sunken city was previously allowed but has since been banned.
Kalkan is one of the quaint towns we recommend visitors to Kas see. Its streets are lined with white houses with colorful trim and colorful bougainvillea. It’s 27 km from Kas and can be reached via the coastal road. Propounded to be the closest place to the stars in the world by Herodotus, Kalkan was known as Kalamaki and populated by Greek-speaking Christians until the 1920s.
Throughout history Kalkan retained its importance as a safe harbor until maritime trade was erased by the construction of the main road through Antalya in the 1970s. Today it is home to a large foreign, mostly English, population.
Kalkan has managed to preserve a section of its old feeling; with its lovely whitewashed houses, its incredibly beautiful water, yacht harbor, nearby villages, and terraced restaurants, Kalkan is reminiscent of a different, untouched paradise.
If you want to use public transit to get to Kalkan, you can take one of the minibuses that depart from the Kas bus station. These buses run every 20 minutes and cost 9 TL.
12. The Ancient City of Xanthos
Kas’s biggest ancient city and located on a hill on the banks of the Esen Stream, the ancient city of Xanthos was recorded as Arnna in Lycian inscriptions and is famous for its archeologic importance and the residents’ devotion to freedom. When the residents of Xanthos were surrounded by the Persians and the Romans during civil wars they committed mass suicide.
Found on the 70th kilometer of the road between Fethiye and Kas and the oldest settlement in the Lycian civilization, Xanthos’s history spans back to the 7th century BCE. With its pillar tombs, house-like tombs, monuments, and reliefs, this city is also where the Inscribed Pillar of Xanthos, the most significant source of Lycian language and data, is found. This city is on UNESCO’s list of world heritage sites and many artifacts recovered here are on display at the British Museum.
13. Saklikent Gorge
One of Kas’s natural wonders, Saklikent Gorge is located 60 kilometers from the town center. We’re sure that our guests will really like and spend some nice time at Saklikent Gorge, one of Kas’s best destinations. Formed by the ice-cold water of the Karacay Stream, a branch of Kinik’s Esen Stream, the gorge is 18 kilometers long and, designated a national park, is Turkey’s longest canyon.
Under protection since 1996, this canyon forms a natural border between Fethiye and Kas. Outdoor sports like rafting, trekking, and jeep safaris are also done here while you also shouldn’t pass up the opportunity for tea and pastries or beer and barbeque on one of the wooden platforms beside the stream.
14. Patara Beach and Ancient City
Many famous Turkish movies filmed their dessert scenes on the sand of Patara Beach, which was formed by the silt of the Xanthos Stream. At 18 kilometers, this is the Mediterranean’s longest beach.
Located between Kas and Fethiye, the fine sand of Patara makes it one of Turkey’s best beaches. Patara is also where many sea turtles lay their eggs, making it even more important. It is 41 kilometers from Kas.
The capital of the Lycian League, Patara’s bouleterion, lighthouse, theatre, and temple of Apollo are open to visitors. With a history dating back to the 8th century BCE, Patara ancient city was one of the Mediterranean’s three most important ports. Today, it takes you on a journey back in time through a region of natural beauty.
15. Kibris Canyon
Kibris Canyon is located between Kas and Elmali and is under special protections for wildlife. At the same time, it’s extraordinary, untouched nature makes it especially enchanting for outdoor sports enthusiasts.
Just 50 kilometers from Kas, hiking, biking, canyoning, and jeep safari tours are all offered at the canyon. You can see a panoramic view of the canyon from the asphalt road running from Kasaba to Kemerkoy and Kuruova and the forest road between Sutlegen and Akoru. The trail passing the wooden bridge between Sinekcibeli and Meryemlik is dotted with pine, juniper, cedar, and strawberry trees.
16. Ancient City of Phellos
The ancient city of Phellos is an incredibly scenic ancient city north of Kas. It’s located 2 km from the village of Cukurbag. Perched on a ridge overlooking the mountainous region, Phellos was an important city in the 4th century BCE.
Its remains consisting mostly of sarcophagi which sit atop a long, thin hill, this city is especially noteworthy for its house-like tombs carved entirely from the bedrock which are surrounded by walls on the highest point of the hill. Its name meaning ‘land of stone’, Phellos ‘s most distinctive artifacts are its bull relief, rich reliefs the inner facades of structures, and the type of sarcophagus found outside the city walls.
Gombe is one of Antalya’s coolest and most famous highland settlements. Known for its apples, walnuts, pears, and wrestling, Gombe is also home to hospitable locals.
A 70 kilometer drive from Kas, the road to Gombe is lined with pine, cedar, and juniper trees, absolute heaven for squirrels. You can swim in the ice-cold water of Yesilgol Lake. You can enjoy nature with a walk to the Ucarsu Waterfall, which falls 60 meters from the top of Mt. Akdag and take beautiful photographs of these natural wonders.
18. Islamlar Village
Located 30 km from Kas, Islamlar is a mountain village famous for its white grapes and trout. Turks and Greek-speaking locals lived together here for years. Its Romaic name was Bodamya, meaning ‘rivers’. Likewise, the fast-flowing streams here provide a much-needed escape from the heat of summer. The trout farms and many restaurants here are a good option for breakfast or lunch.
While in Islamlar you can visit the watermills built by the Greek-speaking population, the oldest being 300 years old, along with the many rock tombs carved into the cliff sides, the best being the incredibly carved tombs in the Goldag area.
One of the important cities of the Lycian civilization, Demre’s history dates back to at least the 3rd century BCE. During the Byzantine period, this area was known as Myra and served as an important religious and administrative center. Located 40 kilometers from Kas, Demre is decorated with the tombs, inscriptions, and reliefs carved into the cliffs behind Myra. But the most important building here is the St. Nicolas Church, built seven meters underground.
Nicolas, also known as Santa Claus, served as bishop in Myra during the 4th century CE and is remembered during celebrations on the 6th of December. It’s believed that after his death, St. Nicolas was buried in this church before his bones were brought to Bari by Italian sailors.
One of the furthest islands from the Greek mainland, the island of Castellorizo, with a population of just 400, stays in contact with the world by means of the 20 minute ferries that depart from Kas. Castellorizo, also known as Megisti or Meis, is the only settlement on the island. Every Friday, a substantial number of islanders visit the Kas farmers’ market.
After the knights, the island fell under the control of Egypt, Naples, and then the Ottoman Empire in 1512 before become part of Greece in 1947. Gaining a bit of fame with the Oscar-winning film Mediterraneo, the island is of interest to those looking for a relaxing holiday. This small island is accessible by ferry from Rhodes or other Greek islands; it’s also home to an airport for small planes.
What to Buy in Kas
In addition to larger markets with everything in stock, you’ll find many small shops in Kas, making shopping fun. From souvenirs to old and new silver jewelry, from local carpets to antiques, from glass, ceramics, and porcelain to handicrafts like copper wares, you’ll find something different to suit any budget. You can buy fresh fruit and vegetables grown in surrounding villages at the Friday Farmers’ Market.
You can find all types of conveniences from supermarkets and small shops in Kas. Shopping is a real pleasure in this town so we want to give some brief information about Kas shopping. You can find a huge range of products suitable for every budget such as souvenirs, ancient and modern style silver jewellery, local rugs and carpets, antiques, and products of handicrafts like glassware, ceramicware, fine porcelain items, copperware. You can also visit the marketplace where every Friday a local bazaar is opened and you can buy fresh fruit and vegetables produced by local villagers. Please contact us for more detailed Kas facts.
Where to Eat and Drink in Kas
Although Mediterranean cooking is most prevalent here, you find restaurants offering tastes appealing to people from all regions, countries, and budgets. Kas is the meeting place for international eats. Most of Kas’s restaurants can be found around the square across from the harbor and on the back streets. Eating under the classic Mediterranean olive and lemon trees of a restaurant garden turns any meal into a feast for visitors to Kas. Thanks to different restaurants catering to all tastes, you’re dinner is sure to be enjoyable.
Nightlife in Kas
Bars and cafes where you can spend a nice evening are mostly concentrated around the coast and square facing the harbor where boat trips depart from. You can also find garden bars and some lining the backstreets that cater to other tastes. Beginning with anything from Turkish music to pop, jazz, and rock, Mediterranean nights continue late into the night without disturbing those looking for peace and quiet.
Kas, where the blues of the Mediterranean are displayed with a generous amount of nature’s greens, there is just so much to see and do that the area is a veritable piece of paradise in an Anatolian landscape.
Where to Stay in Kas
Although it’s small, Kas is offers a wide variety of hotels. Instead of all-inclusive style tourism, Kas developed its guesthouses, boutique villas, apartments, and campsites. You’ll find over 125 accommodation options with a wide array of styles to suit everyone.
You can use the rock-top platforms built by the hotels to jump into the sea or you can rent a boat from the harbor to visit the unbelievably beautiful coves of Kas.