Turkish Riviera - Orlando / Florida Guide
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With glorious, year-round sun, turquoise waters, superb local cuisine, a rich cultural heritage and fair value. Turkey has always been high on the list of best short-haul destinations. However, as political uncertainty has eased, this year sees it back vogue with Bodrum in the Mygia Province leading the way.
New flight routes have helped, making it easier and cheaper to get there, Turkish airlines now has direct flights from London to Bodrum, while Easyjet and Thomas cook have increased their weekly services.
Combined with the buzz created by hotel launches from groups such as LUX which launched an award winning property last year. This has driven energy into this region on the south west coast. The hotel is tucked in a private bay in a top district to the north of Bodrum which in true Riviera style is best reached by boat or yacht.
It boasts great views, slick design, wellness-led activities and healthy wholefood dining. On the revitalised Yalikavak Marina to the west of Bodrum Peninsula, we recently had the launch of 102 bodrum edition, whose infinity pool and white sand beach are arguably the best. Framed by olive trees and tangerine groves, its chic beach club sees international guests arrive in flocks.
The Turkish coastline is littered with golf courses along its length, even though most are located around the Belek resort with around ten courses including the National Golf Club and the Cornelia Faldo Golf Club. The former is Turkey’s oldest course, while the latter was designed by legendary golfer Nick Faldo. Years of experience are not a prerequisite for treading the greens, though, the lawns of the Kaya Eagles Golf Club welcome occasional players and beginners alike. Also there is nothing, to stop you perfecting your swing with a lesson from the local pro.
Nestling behind the touristy coastline, a rich hinterland awaits with a fascinating archaeological heritage second to none. Not that it is always necessary to leave the beach resort. Such is the case with Side, where a remarkably, well preserved Roman temple and amphitheatre sit close to the port. The famous archaeological sites of Aspendos and Perge are easily accessible from the Turkish Riviera. Aspendos is famous for the best preserved Roman Amphitheatres in the World, but to get a clear vision of what a Roman town may have looked like, head to Perge, with its amphitheatre, byzantine basilica ruins, stadium and paved roads lined with ionic columns.
Also not to be ignored are the archaeological sites of Termessos and Sagalassos. They are less accessible, but therefore less crowded and more than worth the detour. Termessos hides away in the heart of the mountains, whereas Salagasos, considered by experts to be the World’s best preserved town from antiquity nestles 1500metres up on the mountain slopes.
If you are looking for more then consider an 8 day guided tour of the region or a combined trip. This is your chance to explore the beautiful Cappadocia region and part of the Lake District and Taurus range.
In simple terms, the Turkish Riviera extends from Kemer on the West coast to Alanya on the eastern side, linked by a string of the coastal resorts and tourist hotel hotspots.
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