General information about ALANYA
To the east and west of Alanya lie inviting turquoise sea fringed by extensive golden beaches. The magnificent Taurus Mountains provide a pine-clad, breathtaking backdrop to this enchanting resort. Most of old Alanya lies on the great rocky promontory that juts out into the sea. Crowning the headland is a sprinkling of Citadel towers and just below is a delightful harbour guarded by the Red Tower, an unusual building that dates back to 1225. At the waterfront there are plenty of friendly bars, tea-houses, cafes and restaurants with an excellent range of international and traditional cuisine. Sea caves and grottoes indent the rocky shore below the Citadel. Some can only be reached by boat but you can walk up to the most famous, Damlatas or "Cape of Dripping Stones". The beautiful cave has a host of impressive stalactites and stalagmites with a moist warm atmosphere said to benefit asthma sufferers.
Visit the impressive 14th century fortress which sits high above Alanya. Within its walls are quaint houses, mosques and a Byzantine church decorated with frescoes. There are twisting narrow alleyways tempting shoppers with their colourful boutiques and stalls of cheese-cloth dresses, carpets, copper and jewellery. As well as its cultural and historical sights, Alanya has an unbeatable beach life too. Beautiful sandy Cleopatra beach lies to the west of the resort while the fine sands of Alanya beach stretch to the east. A good range of water-sports are available too.
The nightlife is easy-going and relaxed with a wide choice of night-spots located at the edge of town. Take your pick from lively bars to late-night discos for real night-owls. Alanya is truly a holiday makers paradise. With superb scenery, historical sights, a relaxed beach life and a lively nightlife - it's easy to see why Alanya is so idyllic.
After Kızıl Kule and the Shipyard, Alanya Castle follows as part of the tour. It takes 45 minute walk to climb up the castle. Don’t miss to see Arab Evliyası which was built as a church in the 11th century and then converted into a mosque; the Suleymaniye Mosque, the Bedesten (market place) beside the mosque, resorted and now used as a restaurant, bar and hotel, Ehmendek where the commander of the castle resided, little houses of Alanya remaining from the Seljuk's and the Ottomans, Aksebe Sultan Masjid and Tomb. You can then go up the Inner Castle. Entrance to the Inner Castle is charged. The entrance gate opens to the large courtyard where on the left side you will see the big cistern vaulted with red bricks on the top. This cistern is the biggest of 400 cisterns existing on various parts of the castle and is still in use. One of the most important works of art present in the inner castle is the Byzantine Church (Aye Yorgi), once used as a Masjid during the Seljuk's period, standing in quite strong and good condition. The stairs right behind the church will lead you to a place which we can call exactly a viewing terrace. You should view the fascinating panorama of the town in three directions, especially at sunset. Adam Atacağı Tower is the last spot of the inner castle tour. It is related that the prisoners of the Roman times were made to play a similar gamble. They were given three stones and one who managed to throw the stone into the sea was released whereas those who could not were thrown into the sea through a catapult. The name Adam Atacağı (=Man Thrower) is given for that reason.
Damlatas Cave: After the Castle tour , the second route climbing down leads you to the entrance door of Damlatas? Cave which lies to the west of the peninsula. The Damlatas beach is also named after this cave.
Adorned with alluring stalactites and stalagmites of various colours, the cave has a constant temperature of 22-23 degrees Celsius. It is said that the atmosphere of the cave has a healing effect on asthma except the allergic type and rheumatism with a humidity of 90-100 % and very high rate of carbon containing some radioactivity.
The section where stalactites and stalagmites are seen is a cavity of 13-14 m. Width and 15 m. Height. Tours to the cave are scheduled in two different types: Sight seeing as well as health tours.
The Historical Town Centre:
It would be most becoming to start the tour in the historical town centre of Alanya from the harbour.
Starting a tour from Kızıl Kule (the Red Tower), you can make your way towards the Shipyard, the middle part of the castle and the inner castle on the top.
Kızıl Kule (Red Tower)
Regarded as the most attractive architectural structure of Alanya and almost a symbol of the town , Kizil Kule was commissioned by Aladdin Keykubat , the Seljuk Sultan in 1226, and called Kızıl Kule for the red (Turkish : kızıl) bricks used in the construction. Kızıl Kule is 33 m. High having an octagonal plan with five storeys.
The bottom floor of the tower, where one pays an entrance fee, is used as an annex of Alanya Museum for exhibition of ethnographic works of art. You can see costumes of the Ottoman period, hand-woven textiles of the region and looms where these handicrafts were produced among the works of art exhibited. leaving the tower behind, follow the pathway by the walls for a further 200 m after going down the stairs; you will reach the shipyard, again built during Sultan Keykubat’s period. The shipyard was built two years after the tower and is the only remaining shipyard from the Seljuk's. It has five docks each of 7 m. Width and 43 m. Depth all opening to the sea.
‘A wonder of nature' Sapadere Canyon is located within the territorial border of Alanya, a sub-district of Antalya. It is in the Northeast of the region, 44 km away from Alanya and 179 km from Antalya. Its geographical co-ordinates are 36° 30' 21" North, 32° 17' 43" East.
Sapadere means a stream away from the road and it was more or less a hidden treasure known only to natives for many, many years until the Alanya district governors and local investors chose to put Sapadere firmly on the map in the name of alternative tourism. This not only benefited the economy of the village but also gave more people the opportunity to visit this spectacularly beautiful valley. There is now a meandering wooden walkway through the valley which was opened mid 2008.
Sapadere Canyon is 360 metres long, nearly 400 metres high and is located 3 km away from Sapadere Village. The canyon is formed by erosion from water, ice and wind. The layers of rock were formed over thousands of years. Wooden walkways make for easy access for all visitors. The walking platform is sympathetically designed and constructed from wood and steel. The platform is environmentally friendly and can be removed when necessary. You will be amazed by the rapidly gushing water over series of rock steps, the numerous waterfalls, rare plants and different species of animals and birds when walking through this natural habitat. The clean, fresh air and cascading turquoise water over the rocks is therapeutic and refreshing on the human spirit...after all, don’t forget that water means life!
At the end of the pathway, 300 meters inside the canyons entrance, you will find the most spectacular point; the marvellous waterfall. This is a popular spot for visitors to take photos and it is also possible to swim in the natural pool at the bottom of the waterfall. The brave can reach the water by jumping (not recommended!) or using the surrounding step-ladders to enjoy the refreshing water. We really mean refreshing as the water barely reaches 12°C even in the peak of the summer!