Demre, Antalya: Holidays, Top Things to Do & See + Advice

Welcome to Demre, a charming coastal town located in the Antalya province of Turkey. Nestled between the azure waters of the Mediterranean Sea and the stunning Taurus Mountains, Demre is a hidden gem waiting to be explored. This picturesque town is known for its rich history, natural beauty, and warm hospitality. In this blog post, we will take you on a journey to discover the wonders of Demre and inspire you to plan a holiday in this enchanting destination.

What to Expect in Demre

Demre, also known as Kale, is a coastal town that offers a mix of historical sites, beautiful beaches, and a laid-back atmosphere. Here’s what you can expect when visiting Demre:

Rich Historical Heritage

Demre is renowned for its historical significance, especially as the location of the ancient city of Myra. As you explore the ruins, you’ll be transported back in time to the days of the Lycian civilization. The highlights include the well-preserved Lycian rock-cut tombs, the impressive Roman theater, and the Church of St. Nicholas, the famous saint who inspired the legend of Santa Claus.

Natural Beauty

Nature lovers will be captivated by the breathtaking landscapes of Demre. The town is surrounded by lush greenery, crystal-clear waters, and stunning mountain ranges. Take a boat trip along the coastline to discover hidden coves, swim in turquoise waters, and marvel at the dramatic cliffs. If you’re feeling adventurous, hike through the nearby canyons or explore the underwater world through snorkeling or diving excursions.

Authentic Turkish Culture

Demre offers a glimpse into traditional Turkish culture and rural life. Take a stroll through the narrow streets of the town center and discover local markets, charming cafes, and small shops selling handmade crafts and souvenirs. Interact with the friendly locals and immerse yourself in their warm hospitality. Don’t miss the opportunity to savor the authentic flavors of Turkish cuisine at local restaurants and taste regional delicacies.

Why Visit Demre?


Demre has much to offer as a holiday destination, making it an ideal choice for various types of travelers. Here are some compelling reasons to plan your holiday in Demre:

Historical Significance

For history enthusiasts, Demre is a treasure trove of ancient ruins and archaeological sites. Immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage and explore the remnants of past civilizations. The well-preserved Lycian rock-cut tombs and the Church of St. Nicholas are must-visit sites that showcase the region’s historical significance.

Natural Beauty

Demre is blessed with stunning natural landscapes, from pristine beaches to majestic mountains. Nature lovers will be delighted by the opportunities for hiking, swimming, and exploring the diverse flora and fauna. The crystal-clear waters of the Mediterranean Sea invite you to indulge in water activities and soak up the sun on sandy shores.

Tranquility and Relaxation

Escape the hustle and bustle of city life and embrace the peaceful ambiance of Demre. This serene coastal town offers a tranquil setting where you can unwind, rejuvenate, and connect with nature. Whether you prefer leisurely walks along the beach, yoga sessions with a view, or simply enjoying a book under the shade of a tree, Demre provides the perfect backdrop for relaxation.

Authentic Cultural Experience

Demre provides an authentic Turkish cultural experience, allowing you to immerse yourself in the local way of life. Interact with friendly locals, witness traditional customs and celebrations, and savor the flavors of

Turkish cuisine. Indulge in mouthwatering dishes prepared with fresh local ingredients and traditional cooking techniques. From savory kebabs to flavorful mezes and sweet baklava, Demre offers a culinary journey that will tantalize your taste buds.

Unique Festivals and Events

Demre is home to several unique festivals and events that showcase the local culture and traditions. One of the most notable events is the St. Nicholas Festival, celebrated in honor of the patron saint of Demre. The festival features processions, music performances, and religious ceremonies, attracting visitors from all over the world. Additionally, you can witness traditional Turkish dances, music concerts, and art exhibitions that highlight the vibrant cultural scene of the region.

Top Things to Do & See in Demre

Explore the Ancient City of Myra

Discover the impressive Lycian rock-cut tombs, the Roman theater, and the Church of St. Nicholas in the ancient city of Myra. Marvel at the intricate carvings and learn about the rich history of this significant archaeological site.

Visit the Church of St. Nicholas

Pay homage to the legendary figure of St. Nicholas, the inspiration behind the modern-day Santa Claus. Explore the well-preserved church, adorned with frescoes and relics, and learn about the fascinating life of this beloved saint.

Take a Boat Trip along the Coast

Embark on a relaxing boat trip along the scenic coastline of Demre. Enjoy the panoramic views, swim in secluded bays, and snorkel in the crystal-clear waters. Keep an eye out for dolphins and turtles that may accompany you on your journey.

Indulge in Beach Activities

Spend a day soaking up the sun on the beautiful beaches of Demre. Whether you prefer the sandy shores of Cavuskoy Beach or the secluded bays of Andriake, you’ll find the perfect spot to relax, swim, and enjoy water sports such as paddleboarding, jet-skiing, or kayaking.

Experience Traditional Turkish Village Life

Venture into the nearby traditional villages to experience the authentic rural life of Turkey. Visit the charming village of Demre, explore local markets, and interact with friendly villagers. Immerse yourself in their customs, traditions, and handicrafts.

Trekking in the Taurus Mountains

Lace up your hiking boots and embark on a trekking adventure in the scenic Taurus Mountains. Discover hidden trails, breathtaking viewpoints, and cascading waterfalls as you explore the pristine nature surrounding Demre.

Enjoy Local Cuisine

Sample the delectable flavors of Turkish cuisine at local restaurants and cafes in Demre. Try traditional dishes such as lamb kebabs, stuffed grape leaves, and Turkish tea. Don’t forget to indulge in the region’s famous citrus fruits and olive oil.

Discover Sunken Cities

Take a diving excursion to explore the ancient sunken cities of Kekova. Dive into the clear waters to witness the submerged ruins, including the underwater Lycian sarcophagi, Roman villas, and mosaic floors.

Attend Festivals and Cultural Events

Check the local calendar for festivals and cultural events happening in Demre. Join in the festivities, dance to traditional music, and witness captivating performances that celebrate the region’s heritage.

Explore Beyond Demre

Kas panoramic view

While Demre has much to offer, consider venturing further to nearby destinations such as Kaş, Kalkan, Kekova, and Olympos to experience the diverse beauty of the Antalya region.

Daily Tours & Excursions from Demre

Plan Your Trip

Getting There

Demre is conveniently located in the Antalya province, making it easily accessible from both domestic and international destinations. The nearest airport is Antalya International Airport, which offers frequent flights from major cities worldwide. From the airport, you can reach Demre by rental car, taxi, or public transportation.

Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Demre is during the spring (April to June) and autumn (September to October) months when the weather is pleasant and mild. During these seasons, you can enjoy comfortable temperatures, fewer crowds, and a vibrant display of nature.

Accommodation Options

In Demre, you’ll find a range of accommodation options to suit different preferences and budgets. From cozy guesthouses and boutique hotels to seaside resorts, there is something for everyone. Consider staying in a charming family-run pension for a more intimate experience or opt for a beachfront resort for ultimate relaxation.

Eating Out in Demre

Demre offers a variety of dining options that cater to all tastes. Sample the local cuisine at traditional Turkish restaurants, where you can savor flavorful kebabs, fresh seafood, and aromatic mezes. Don’t forget to try the local specialties such as “saksuka” (a delicious eggplant dish) and “bougatsa” (a sweet pastry). For those seeking international flavors, there are also restaurants serving Italian, Mediterranean, and Asian cuisines.

Shopping in Demre

Take some time to explore the local markets and shops in Demre. You’ll find a range of products that make for unique souvenirs and gifts. Look for handmade crafts, ceramics, traditional textiles, and local spices. Visit the weekly bazaars, such as the Demre Market, to experience the vibrant atmosphere and discover local products.

Nightlife in Demre

While Demre is known for its tranquil ambiance, there are still options for evening entertainment. Enjoy a leisurely stroll along the promenade, savoring a sunset view over the Mediterranean Sea. Visit local cafes and bars to relax with a refreshing drink or indulge in live music performances at some of the beachfront venues. While the nightlife here may be more subdued compared to larger cities, it provides a laid-back and enjoyable atmosphere.

Summary of all, Demre invites you to immerse yourself in its rich history, breathtaking landscapes, and warm hospitality. Whether you’re seeking a cultural adventure, a relaxing beach getaway, or an exploration of ancient ruins, Demre has something to offer every traveler. Plan your trip, pack your bags, and get ready to create lasting memories in this captivating destination.

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