Follow the suggestions for the 1-week itinerary for the first week. Then assess how much time and energy you want to put into travel and what your travel goals are. Outdoor activities, historic ruins, and extraordinary natural sites converge along the coast between Antalya and Fethiye, which is where I recommend you spend the remainder of your stay. If you're arriving from "Plan B" (Cappadocia), you can start your Turquoise Coastal Tour in Antalya (the drive takes about 5 1/2 hours from Cappadocia; you can also fly via Istanbul) and follow these suggestions, beginning with day 14 and working backward. Or fly into Dalaman, beginning at the top, in Fethiye. In either case, you'll lose a day, unfortunately, either at the airport or on the road.

Day 8: Fly & Drive to Fethiye

Assuming you have any time left over after your travels, spend the day wandering around the old city of Fethiye, shopping, eating, and taking a hamam break. Visit the Roman theater and the rock-cut Lycian tombs of ancient Telmessos. Have dinner at Megri Restaurant in the center of the old town, and then have a drink at Türkü Evi, a characteristic Turkish pub.


Days 9 & 10: Blue Waters and Stunning Scenery

Take a few hours in the National Park area (Ölüdeniz, or the Blue Lagoon), where you can swim in the lagoon that graces the cover of every tourism brochure on Turkey's Mediterranean. From the waterfront of Belcekiz Beach, hop on one of the few daily boat taxis for the half-hour trip to Butterfly Valley, where you can either test out another beach or hike back toward the head of the gorge and the waterfalls. If you abhor crowds (and have a car or scooter), drive up past the ghost village of Kayaköy to the secluded and stunning Gemiler Beach. On the way back, stop off at Kayaköy for a haunting sunset, and then grill your own wild boar in the garden restaurant of Cin Bal. On day 10, take the "12-Island Tour", a daylong minicruise to watery caves and breathtaking coves where you can swim ashore for a close-up view of abandoned ruins -- or, if you've had enough of beautiful blue waters, take this opportunity to visit the 18km (11 mile) gorge of Saklikent.

Days 11, 12, 13 & 14: The Lovely Lycian Coast


Leave Fethiye early to allow time to explore the ruins of Xanthos and Patara (and perhaps spend a few hours on Patara Beach on your way east). There are a number of points along the coast that are worthy of a stopover; these are generally limited by the location of your hotel. I recommend an overnight in Kas, Olympos, or, if you can hold out for a late arrival after a full day of exploration, Antalya. Places to stop along the way? There's Kekova Bay, where ancient Lycian tombs tumble into the sea. Take a boat taxi over to the idyllic village of Kale (ancient Simena) for a lunch of fresh fish with your feet dangling in the reeds, and a short walk up to the castle. Olympos is another one of my favorite destinations, located on the outskirts of the small beachfront village of Çirali. It's also a good starting place for a short walk along the Lycian Way. An afternoon picnic and stroll through ancient Roman ruins are even more delightful than imaginable at Phaselis, where a pine tree forest meets a particularly lovely trio of harbors. Finish up in Antalya, either with some last-minute shopping in the meandering streets of Kaleiçi, in the Antalya Museum, or curled up on a cushion at one of the choice beach clubs now lining the pebbled waterfront of Konyaalti.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.