Top 19 Best Places to Visit in Side: Best Sights + Tips

Side, a charming coastal town located on the southern coast of Turkey, is a treasure trove of historical landmarks, stunning beaches, and natural wonders. With its rich history dating back thousands of years, Side offers visitors a unique blend of ancient ruins, cultural sites, and breathtaking natural beauty. If you’re planning a visit to Side, be prepared to be captivated by its fascinating past and awe-inspiring scenery. In this guide, we’ll take you on a journey through the top best places to visit in Side, showcasing the town’s must-see attractions that will leave you inspired and eager to explore.

19 of the Best Places to Visit and See in Side

1. Ancient City of Side: Stepping into History

Step back in time and immerse yourself in the ancient world as you wander through the ancient city of Side. This archaeological site is a testament to the town’s rich history and offers a glimpse into its past glory. Explore the well-preserved ruins of temples, the agora, the amphitheater, and the Roman baths. Marvel at the intricate details of the ancient structures and imagine what life was like in this thriving port city.

2. Side Amphitheater: Witnessing Ancient Performances

Located within the ancient city, Side Amphitheater is a magnificent Roman theater that once hosted theatrical performances and gladiator fights. Climb up the seating tiers and admire the panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. Stand in the center of the stage and feel the echoes of the past. During your visit, take a moment to appreciate the remarkable acoustics and architectural brilliance of this ancient theater.

3. Temple of Apollo and Athene: Discovering Ancient Gods

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Dedicated to the gods Apollo and Athena, the Temple of Apollo and Athena stands as a striking example of ancient architecture. It is the most visited and the most popular landmark here. It dates back to the 2nd century and has been dedicated to the Greek god of light and sun. Marvel at the grand columns and intricate carvings that adorn the temple’s facade. As you walk through the temple’s ruins, feel the energy and spirituality that once emanated from this sacred site. One of the best places to visit in Side.

4. Agora, Agora Bathhouse: Exploring the Heart of Ancient Trade

The Agora was the bustling marketplace of ancient Side, where merchants gathered to trade goods and share stories. Explore the remains of the agora, imagining the vibrant atmosphere that once filled these streets. Visit the Agora bathhouse and envision the ancient Romans indulging in luxurious baths and socializing with fellow citizens.

5. Monumental Fountain (Nymphaeum): Admiring Architectural Marvels

The Monumental Fountain, or Nymphaeum, is a remarkable monumental fountain that served as a gathering place for ancient Side’s residents. Admire the intricate carvings and decorative details that embellish this architectural marvel. Take a moment to appreciate the craftsmanship and creativity of the ancient sculptors who created this magnificent structure.

6. Vespasianus Fountain: Quenching Your Thirst in History

Named after the Roman emperor Vespasian, the Vespasianus Fountain is another impressive monument that showcases the town’s ancient water infrastructure. Marvel at the well-preserved remains of this fountain and imagine the locals gathering around it to quench their thirst in the scorching Anatolian sun.

7. Side Harbor: Embracing the Seafaring Heritage

Side Harbor was once a bustling port that connected the town to various destinations across the Mediterranean. Take a stroll along the picturesque harbor, lined with charming restaurants and cafes. Admire the fishing boats and yachts that dot the marina and feel the gentle sea breeze against your skin. Enjoy a leisurely walk or stop for a refreshing drink while taking in the mesmerizing views of the sparkling azure waters.

8. Side Beaches: Basking in the Sun and Sea

Side is renowned for its pristine beaches that stretch along the Mediterranean coast. Sink your toes into the soft golden sand and soak up the sun’s warmth as you relax on Side’s beautiful beaches. Whether you prefer a tranquil cove or a lively stretch of shoreline, Side has a beach to suit every taste. Take a refreshing dip in the crystal-clear waters or indulge in thrilling water sports activities. Unwind, recharge, and let the beauty of the coastline envelop you.

9. Side Museum: Unveiling the Town’s Treasures

For a deeper understanding of Side’s rich history, a visit to the Side Museum is a must. Explore the museum’s exhibits, which showcase a collection of artifacts discovered during archaeological excavations in the region. Marvel at the intricately crafted statues, mosaics, and ancient artifacts that provide insight into the lives of the people who once inhabited this ancient city.

10. Upside Down House: Defying Gravity

Prepare for a unique and playful experience at the Upside Down House of Side. Enter a world where gravity seems to be reversed as you explore the topsy-turvy rooms and furniture. Capture unforgettable photos and let your imagination run wild in this whimsical attraction. One of the fantastic places to visit in Side.

11. Side Underwater Museum: Delving into the Underwater World

Dive into the fascinating world beneath the waves at the Side Underwater Museum. Discover a collection of ancient artifacts and sculptures submerged in the crystal-clear waters of the Mediterranean Sea. Snorkel or dive among the sculptures and witness the unique fusion of art and nature.

12. Private Nomad Museum: Embracing Nomadic Culture

Immerse yourself in the rich traditions and culture of the Yörük (Nomad) people at the Private Nomad Museum. Learn about their nomadic lifestyle, traditional crafts, and vibrant heritage. Explore the museum’s exhibits, which include artifacts, textiles, and authentic Yörük tents.

13. Manavgat Waterfall: Admiring the Beauty of Nature

A short distance from Side, the Manavgat Waterfall awaits nature enthusiasts. Witness the impressive cascade of water as it tumbles down the rocks and into the river below. Take a stroll along the scenic pathways, surrounded by lush greenery, and find a peaceful spot to sit and enjoy the serenity of the surroundings.

14. Manavgat Market: Indulging in Local Delights

No visit to Side is complete without exploring the vibrant Manavgat Market. Immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere as you wander through the colorful stalls, offering a variety of goods, from spices and textiles to souvenirs and fresh produce. Sample delicious local delicacies, mingle with the friendly locals, and embrace the bustling energy of this traditional market.

15. Titreyengöl: Serene Lakeside Retreat

Escape the hustle and bustle of the town and venture to Titreyengöl, a serene lake located near Side. Take a leisurely stroll along the tranquil lakeside, surrounded by lush greenery. Enjoy a picnic on the shores or rent a paddleboat to explore the calm waters. Relax and rejuvenate in this peaceful natural oasis.

16. Cennet Canyon: A Paradise for Nature Lovers

For nature enthusiasts seeking adventure, Cennet (Paradise) Canyon is a must-visit destination. Embark on a thrilling hiking expedition through breathtaking landscapes of towering cliffs, lush forests, and cascading waterfalls. Immerse yourself in the tranquility of nature and discover hidden gems along the way.

17. Köprülü Canyon National Park: A Journey into the Wild

Located near Side, Köprülü Canyon National Park offers a unique outdoor experience. Explore the rugged canyons, hike through picturesque trails, and marvel at the stunning natural beauty. Take a thrilling rafting trip along the Köprüçay River or go on a jeep safari to discover the park’s diverse flora and fauna.

18. Berkem Land of Lions in Manavgat: Roaming with Majestic Beasts

Discover the enchanting world of lions at Berkem Land of Lions in Manavgat. Witness the majesty of these magnificent creatures as you observe them in a natural habitat. Learn about lion conservation efforts and gain a deeper appreciation for these awe-inspiring animals.

19. Aquajoy Water Park in Manavgat: Splash and Fun for All

Indulge in a day of excitement and water-filled adventures at Aquajoy Water Park in Manavgat. Enjoy thrilling water slides, relax in the pools, and let the waves carry you away in the wave pool. With attractions for all ages, Aquajoy Water Park promises a fun-filled day for the whole family.

With this comprehensive list of the top best places to visit in Side, you can plan your itinerary and embark on a remarkable journey through history, culture, and natural wonders. Each attraction offers a unique experience, whether you’re delving into the ancient past, embracing nature’s beauty, or enjoying thrilling adventures. So pack your bags, gather your enthusiasm, and get ready for an unforgettable holiday in Side, where the treasures of the past and the wonders of the present await.

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