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Best Beaches and Ruins of Turkey

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Fly into: Istanbul Fly out of: Istanbul
Total Duration: 12 days

Many people come to Turkey to see the stunning ruins, while others are drawn by the siren call of the beaches. This itinerary, starting and ending in Istanbul, will satisfy both, and you'll see some of the greatest preserved ancient sites in Turkey. Some happen to be nestled along beaches, and others are just a short detour from a boat ride and sunshine.

    This Trip's Top Experiences:

  • Archaeology
  • Beaches
  • Architecture
  • History
  • Natural Beauty
Days 1-3
Maksym Gorpenyuk/Shutterstock

1 Istanbul

Ancient Wonders

  • Head to the Old City to see some of Istanbul's greatest sights: Aya Sofya, the Blue Mosque, and Topkapi Palace
  • Explore Beyoğlu, Istanbul's new town, which is packed with trendy shops and cafés
  • Shop at the Grand Bazaar, where you'll find everything from spices to rugs
  • History
  • Shopping
  • Architecture
Discover Istanbul »
Days 4-6
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europeexpert / member

2 Selçuk and Ephesus

Travel Back in Time

  • Explore the Greco-Roman ruins at Ephesus, one of the best-preserved ancient sites in the world
  • Take a dip in the hot thermal springs at Pammukale, and tour the ruins at nearby Hieropolis
  • Walk around the town of Aphrodisias, which has ruins dating to 1 BC
  • History
  • Archaeology
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Days 7-9
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3 Dalyan, Iztuzu Beach and Kaunos

Tombs and Turtles

  • Explore the tombs, and hike in Dalyan, a riverside city
  • From Dalyan, take a boat to the ruins of ancient Kaunos
  • See nesting turtles at Iztuzu Beach
  • Archaeology
  • Natural Beauty
  • Beaches
Discover Dalyan, Iztuzu Beach and Kaunos »
Days 10-12
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Turkey Ministry of Culture and Tourism

4 Letoön, Patara and Kaş

Beaches and Ruins

  • Visit the three ancient temples in Letoön, some of which date to 2 BC
  • The ruins at Patara are scattered among marshes and sand dunes
  • Head to Kas for its beautiful, wide bay and ruins
  • Archaeology
  • Beaches
Discover Letoön, Patara and Kaş »