The town of Kaş, just 25 km away from Kalkan, has equal magical charm. Once a small fishing village like Kalkan, the town has become a wonderful spot for visitors from across the globe. Kaş has an unhurried, relaxed ambience and in spite of being a tourist attraction has maintained it’s quaint charm and individuality. Sat at the foot of towering mountains, Kaş overlooks the unspoiled meditteranean sea and offers a wonderful escape for nature lovers and adventurers as it sits aong the path of the Lycian walk-way.
Winding streets are peppered with boutique stores selling bespoke jewellery and handmade clothing and numerous restaurants offer a spread of Turksh mezzes, fish and traditonal dishes. Kaş has a lively nightlife scene with bars playing a variety of live music until the early hours of the morning.
Ruins of the ancient town of Antiphellos mix with modern buildings in Kaş. Across the water to the south lies the Greek islandof Megisti (Kastellorizo; Meis Adası in Turkish). You can go there easily for a day trip or expolre the beautiful bays of Kaş on one of the many daily boat tours that leave from Kaş’s marina.
Kekova Sunken City
This full day boat trip departs in the morning at around 09:30 from Kaş harbour and sets sail in the direction of Kekova. The Kekova region encompasses the island of Kekova, the villages of Kaleköy and Üçağız and four ancient towns of Simena, Aperlae, Dolchiste and Teimioussa. Along the edge of the Kekova island lie the fascinating half-submerged remains of a Lycian sunken city, and some remains from the Byzantine times. This tour passes 7 different bays and stops at four of them to allow guests to swim in the turquoise waters. Swimming at Kekova itself is prohibited as the region has been declared as specially protected but the views of the sunken city are mesmerising enough from the boat. A meditteranean style buffet lunch is included in the price of the trip but any drinks are paid as a surcharge. The tour ends back at Kaş harbour at around 18:00.
Meis Island Tour
Meis is a small Greek island located directly opposite of Kas. There are about 400 people who live there, and there are churches, museums and “the blue cave.” To date, the most attractive place on the island is the Blue Cave in the southeast, which is called Pfokiali by the locals .It is 40-50 m long, 25-30m wide and 20-25m high and is wider than the famous Grotta Azzurra (Blue Cave) in Capri Island, Italy. Sunlight which passes through the first layers of sea water, reflects the famous blue lights in the cave and makes bodies in the water shimmer in silver.
The cave can only be visited by boat, and the entrance to the cave is open only when the sea is calm, almost 1m above sea level. The best times to visit here are early morning hours when the sun is still low. In peak season, a ferry goes out there daily, but it only runs once a week during the winter.
The companies that arrange for these tours are located in the Kas square. One is called Kahramanlar Turizm and the other is Meis Express. If you don’t have a Schengen Visa (and need one), then you’ll need to hand over your documents a couple of days in advance in order to go to Meis.
Kaş 12 Island Day Trip
The set of Twelve Isles is a mesmerising place to visit; a superb place for snorkelling and has a fascinating wreck and underwater canyon to dive to. The boat trip begins at Kaş harbour in the morning between 9-10 and sails to Yargilan bay for the first of several swimming opportunities. Some boats who offer this trip have fantastic equipment on board such as sea scooters, paddle boards and kayak for guests to make the most of their aqua experience on this trip. The next stop on this tour is the twelve Isles- the main attraction which is home to many brightly coloured sea creatures. Following this stop the tour continues on to Güvercin bay where a mediterranean buffet lunch is served (included in the price). The underwater shark statue is also a spectacular and unexpected point of interest at this bay. The tour makes a further two stops with a fruit service and returns to Kaş marina at 18:00. All drinks served on the boat are at a surcharge.
Organised Tours and Activities
A varitey of outdoor activities are also available from walking the Saklıkent gorge or rafting down it’s cooling waters, horse riding at Patara beach, quad biking at patara beach, tandem paragliding which can be arranged from selected beach clubs or deep sea diving with one of the Kaş based diving centres.
Dining in Kaş
Kaş has a wide range of restaurants, some clustered together in the widing streets of the old town, others fringe the large main square that sits behind the marina and there are even restaurants right next to the sea with dining areas sat above the water. A range of culinary delights can be enjoyed but one of the great highlights are the ‘meyhanes’. Meyhanes are similar to taverns and are a big part of Turkish dinner culture. They revolve around drinking rakı, the Turkish national spirit made of anise, and eating plenty of food in a very leisurely manner. Kaş has plenty of them and here is how to have a true meyhane experience:
Cold dishes- When you go to a tavern, you typically start with some cold mezes (like tapas) and raki. Your waiter will either take you to a fridge where the mezes are displayed or bring a big tray to your table with all the mezes laid out for you to choose from. Popular dishes include humus, yaprak sarması (stuffed vine leaves), deniz böcülcesi (sea beans), fava (broad beans), atom (yogurt with fried chili peppers) and patlıcan salata (grilled eggplant salad).
Warm dishes- Next, you move on to the warm appetizers, followed by grilled fish. For the warm appetizers grilled octopus and fried calamari are some of the most popular. Paçanga böreği (dried meat in fried phyllo dough) is also great if you can find it.
Çupra (sea bream) and levrek (sea bass) are the most common fish on the menu, but there are usually other options too. It is best to trust the restaurant’s advice on what is fresh and in season and on how to cook it.
Dessert- Although many are full to the point of bursting, somehow there is always room for dessert. Usually it’s one of two types of helva (tahini or semolina) with ice cream.
The best way to describe Kaş at night time is ‘vibrant’. The main square is usually buzzing with a mix of locals and tourist visitors, swathes of people can be seen enjoying a beverage at one of the many bars and restaurants that surround the square and children play in the square until after dark. There is a great selection of bars which play various types of music both recorded and live that can be found close to the square in the side and back streets of the old town. We have listed some of the favourite spots below:
Jazz music has a different kind of story in Kas. This venue is home to this story, and it’s one of the few places that only does live performances. Hi Jazz exhibits rock jazz blues as well as other types of alternative music and has hosted many big names in Turkey such as Ediz Hafizoglu, Feti Caglayan, Suleyman Bagcioglu, Tumer Dalgakiran, Ercan Temel, Fatma Baba, Sinem Yilmaz. It’s a great option to listen to quality live music while sipping on a beverage.
Echo is housed in an excellent historic stone building and is one of the more famous performance bars in Kas. The bar, which has a large space, also hosts famous Turkish names and groups throughout the summer. A few of the names include Yeni Turku, Birsen Tezer, Bulent Ortacgil, Jehan Babur, Sibel Köse, Can Gox, Yuzyuzeyken Konusuruz, Sarp Maden and Adamlar. There is a garden where you can drink and talk before the concerts begin.
In Kas the bars are very close to each other, almost in a line formation. No. 11 is a very beautiful place right in the middle. They offer a wide range of cocktails and play nostalgic Turkish pop music a couple of times a week. This is one of the places that is so popular people are spilling out into the streets.
This is a calm, laid-back rock bar where they host a lot of famous DJ names. Aylin Aslim – who is the owner of the place and came to Kaş to open this venue– plays and allows DJ friends who visit to play as well. You are likely to encounter someone new every time you go.
As the town of Kaş itself is quite compacted with most of the bars, shops, restaurants and marina all within a few km radius and the terrain being fairly flat it is easy to access most places on foot. For visiting some of the beaches which are further out there are local dolmuş bus services that run regularly throughout the day and you can request to get off at a non designated stop which makes this service really useful on hot summer days! There are of course local taxi services available day and night for visitors who are staying a little further out of town.