Antalya city is the main center on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey, Antalya. Being the most popular town and resort of the Turkish Riviera, it boasts a scenic old quarter and an impressive harbor. Antalya city center is situated about 11,6 km. on the north-east of Antalya Airport. Here you’ll find a quick travel guide to Antalya city center including top things to do, sights to visit, best places to stay, eat, drink, and all tourist info you need plus insider advice.
Things to Do & See
Kaleici – The Old Town
Kaleici, which means inner castle in Turkish, is the pretty old town of the city. It is the historic center of the city surrounded by a Roman wall. A must see place.
You can start your Antalya city center day out with a nice stroll along the old town. Here, you’ll explore and enjoy the pretty narrow streets and the old stone houses. Many of these houses have been converted into boutique hotels and trendy shops.
When you continue wandering through the shore, you’ll come up to a slope of the cliffs and witness the famous Roman harbor. The harbor is now serving as a marina for yachts and daily excursion boats.
Here you can enjoy the amazing panoramic views, take photos and enjoy your drink or meal in one of the surrounding tea gardens, cafes, bars and restaurants.
If you continue strolling along the harbor, you’ll come across a famous monumental site named Hadrian’s Gate. It is also a must see place at the old quarter.
The Triumphal Arch of the building dates back to to the Roman Emperor’s visit the city in 130 AD and is part of the old town wall.
And than comes the impressive Yivli Minaret, which is is a ribbed minaret that was built by Sultan Keykubat in the 13th century. It is also one of the famous landmarks of the town.
Here you’ll see the lively town center together with the impressive riding statue of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, founder of the Turkish Republic.
Archaeological Museum of Antalya
The Antalya Museum is a great archaeological museum located in the Antalya city center. Here you’ll experience and admire the exhibitions from the Lycia, Roman and Byzantine civilizations.
The very well-preserved Roman statues and sculptures, huge sarcophagi and remains from the antique theater in Perge are a must see and the most valuable exhibits.
The Hall of Gods exhibition hall is especially a must as it is the most popular part of the museum.
Here, you’ll see the 2nd century statues and busts of Greek gods and goddesses including Zeus, Athena and Aphrodite. The Museum also exhibits a collection of folk costumes and beautiful rugs.
Antalya Aquarium is a great leisure area situated in the Antalya city center. It is also the biggest tunnel aquarium in the world.
The aquarium showcases the diverse life of the Indian Ocean, Red Sea, Atlantic Ocean, and Pacific Ocean in 4 different thematic aquariums, Snow World and Ice Museum, tropical reptile house named WildPark, Oceanride XD Cinema, restaurant and cafes.
The Konyaalti Beach is the main city beach that is extending for about 7 km from the Antalya harbor. The beach is a 1,5 km. long blue-flagged and pebbled beach. The waters are crystal clear and like an aquarium especially in the mornings.
You can simply jump on the tram heading west from the town center and easily access this lovely beach at the last stop. You can also find and do variety of water sports activities.
The Mermerli beach is a pretty beach located just in the historic center of Antalya, at the end of the marina, Kaleici Harbor. This beach is a popular city beach and has calm waters.
Shopping in Antalya is definitely a fantastic experience for travelers. From big shopping malls, supermarkets, popular outdoor markets, antique, souvenir and handicraft shops to great stores, you’ll find plenty of shopping opportunities in Antalya city center.
The Antalya main bazaar is situated at the Kaleici old town. It is a popular place for both tourists and locals. Here you can find plenty of local shopping, clothes, brands, traditional items, souvenirs such as Turkish sweets and delights, coffee, jewelry, leather goods, the famous evil eye (a good luck charm) and handmade crafts.
Kaleici is also famous with the shops selling Turkish carpets, textiles and leather clothing. As the area is mostly pedestrianized, you’ll enjoy strolling along the narrow streets with lots of great shops.
The Terracity is the largest and most popular shopping mall in Antalya city center. It houses more than 150 stores selling designer and local brands.
The Migros Supermarket is the largest supermarket chain in Turkey that you can find about anything here.
The Antalya Marina is also another great place and popular for its quality shopping opportunities. Here you can find great boutiques and souvenir shops selling branded clothes, as well as souvenirs and crafts.
You can also reward yourself here with a cooling drink with the impressive views of the Mediterranean.
Dine & Wine
You’ll find plenty of authentic and great restaurants and have excellent dining experiences in the Antalya city. Majority of the both authentic and modern cafes, bars and restaurants are situated at the old town and harbor area with magnificent views of the Mediterranean.
Traditional Turkish cuisine is a must and are on offer with range of soups and dishes from fresh caught fish, meat, grilled kebabs, vegetable dishes, as well as fresh salads and delicious desserts.
Antalya city nights are lively. You’ll find lots of bars and night clubs to enjoy and get entertained after dark.
Lively bars, night clubs and restaurants are offer different themes with live music, cocktails and shows.