‘an oasis of sophistication’ Sunday Times 26 February 06
The Turkish Tourist board has this to say about Kalkan:
“Turkey’s Mediterranean shore, the ”Turquoise Coast”, is nearly 1600 km (994 miles) long and is scattered with fine-sand beaches and sprinkled with classical cities turned to picturesque ruins. The Turquoise Coast includes the town of Kalkan a small peaceful Mediterranean resort and fishing town. Kalkan has not been touched by mass tourism. More sophisticated than the usual resort town, Kalkan appeals to travelers looking for more than a “sun and sea” holiday.
Because of its great charm, Kalkan has a growing number of perennial visitors who say the town is the only holiday destination they would choose to visit repeatedly. There is simply no other town quite like Kalkan along Turkey’s coast.
Kalkan curls snuggly around an ancient harbour sheltered at the foot of the towering Taurus Mountains. The town overlooks a beautiful bay in which islands seem to magically float upon the shimmering sea. Narrow streets twist down to the harbour through the historic town and are lined with listed whitewashed villas with shuttered windows situated alongside small local specialty shops and restaurants. Overhead hang original ornately carved Ottoman timber balconies garlanded with brilliantly coloured bougainvillea cascading to the streets below. It is a very special place.
Why Kalkan is so special
Not only is Kalkan beautiful, but unlike other Turkish coastal resort towns Kalkan’s main economy is tourism and therefore its citizens put much pride and effort into the town’s historic preservation. Because of this, Kalkan has retained the texture of its history with its distinctive Greek architecture (it was once a Greek and Turkish fishing village). Very strict building codes keep the town small and architecturally blended with the historic heart of the town known as “Old Kalkan”.
Besides the famous “Kalkan Style” historic architecture, the many excellent restaurants of Kalkan contribute to the special atmosphere within Kalkan. Good dining has always been the way of life in Kalkan and continues today. In fact, Kalkan is said to have the highest number of restaurants and bars per inhabitant or square meter on the Turkish coast. Additionally, Kalkan is especially renowned in Turkey for its numerous roof terrace restaurants and bars which offer a wonderful view of the town, sea and stars. You can also sit at one of the many fine harbour-side restaurants and watch the fishermen leave early in the morning as you eat breakfast, or see them return with the day’s catch in the evening.
Kalkan is a small town (of only a few thousand) and this creates a wonderful intimate feeling. But don’t let its size mislead you – there is plenty to do in and around Kalkan. During the day the town is surprisingly empty as most guests choose to swim or explore the multitude of beautiful ancient Lycian and natural sites of the area. However, everything changes in the evening when Kalkan bursts alive for a long, festive night.
Kalkan has many special features but without doubt it is the people who make the town extra special
The people of Kalkan happily welcome you, and you may at first be surprised by the universal friendliness within the town. Warm Turkish hospitality and friendliness is the basis of life here and the people of Kalkan sincerely enjoy getting to know their guests. So don’t hesitate to accept one of the many tulip-shaped glasses of çay (tea) you will be offered while you amble along Kalkan’s winding streets. You won’t be hassled while you are a guest of Kalkan – the town is hassle-free and is proud to be so.”
You will fall in love with Kalkan