Peter Sommer Travels - vacations and travel

Turkey: Cruising The Lycian Shore

Turkey, Europe, Middle East

from £3,425* per person 15 Days September
Boutique accommodations Exertion level: 3
Operator: Peter Sommer Travels 14 people max
  • Dalaman airport, dalaman, turkey
  • Boats, Barges & Small Ship Cruises trips
This gulet cruise and cultural Turkey tour explores the virtually untouched coastline of ancient Lycia, on the breathtaking turquoise coast. We’ll explore some of the best historical sites in all of Turkey, from the marbled city of Perge, where Turkish archaeologists are unearthing a site to rival Ephesus, to Aspendos, adorned with the best preserved ancient theatre in the world.

The archaeological wonders go on and on - like magnificent Arykanda, a quite gorgeous antique town surrounded by jaw dropping natural scenery on the edge of a mountain; and beautiful Phaselis, famed in antiquity for its rascally merchants, and set beside the shore, its three harbours, aqueduct, theatre, baths, and streets swathed in pine trees. There’s also the award winning museum (and Peter’s personal favourite in Turkey) in Antalya, which houses an unbeatable collection of Roman statues almost all of which were discovered at nearby Perge.

As we travel behind the soaring Taurus Mountains, we will discover an extraordinary culture and a fiercely independent people that developed over many centuries: the Lycians. Their funerary architecture, unlike anything else in the world, still litters their once prosperous ports.

On this escorted holiday, we step back in time, to see how these towns evolved from Greek, Roman and Byzantine times to the present day. Their location, history, and state of preservation make for some of the most fascinating archaeological sites in the world.

Taking a luxurious sailing vacation on a Turkish gulet is simply the best way to explore the maritime civilisation of the Lycians. We can reach otherwise inaccessible places in relaxing and stylish fashion without even the need to change hotels. There are frequent opportunities to swim in the crystal waters of the Turquoise coast, windsurf, kayak, or go for a hike and admire the flora. Naturally, delicious Turkish food is a vital component of all our gulet cruises in Turkey.

Once a day we visit one of the antique cities that adorn Lycia’s timeless coast. We stroll along ancient roads lined with wild herbs, and through olive trees strewn with rock tombs.

From soaring aqueducts to Byzantine churches floored with mosaics, each site is an archaeological adventure, part of a historical puzzle that reveals a remarkable story of human civilisation. This is a holiday in Turkey designed to relax and inspire in equal measure.

Locations visited/nearby

Turkey, Europe, Middle East

0 testimonials about this trip.

3 testimonials about the provider, Peter Sommer Travels:

  • Reviewer: located in Winchester, UK
    “We so enjoyed the cruise. As a tour guide myself, I am, I suppose, the most critical sort of audience, but I was simply knocked over by the whole experience: we loved Almira, the wonderful gulet with its delightful and efficient crew, and those beautiful sites explained with such passion and sensitivity. Well done indeed.”
  • Reviewer: located in Roseville, NSW Australia
    “The combination of sailing, walking through fascinating archaeological sites, meeting friendly Turkish villagers, swimming in warm clear waters and being fed delicious healthy Turkish food in good company - is just a winner. It is the best holiday we have ever had. Many thanks for your meticulous attention to our comfort.”
  • Reviewer: located in London UK
    “After 2 wonderful cruises with Peter we thought it might be hard to repeat the magic - we needn’t have worried. Sailing to Ephesus was the best of them all. The 5 kids with us loved it and still talk about it as one big adventure. Hats off again to Peter who manages effortlessly to hold adults and children entranced with his evocative narratives.”

Comments from Facebook


Day 1: Our boat is about 30 minutes from Dalaman airport in the pretty harbour of Göcek. Welcome dinner on board.

Day 2: A chance to unwind in the Bay of Fethiye.

Day 3: We cruise south to Gemiler Island, a key Byzantine pilgrimage site, where Japanese archaeologists have been hard at work. A perfect area for swimming.

Day 4: On to Kaş, a beautiful village of white washed houses covered with purple bougainvillea. The ancient city, Antiphellos, is littered with tombs and a theatre with a magnificent sea view.

Day 5: East to picturesque Üçağız, old Teimiussa, one of the most evocative of all Lycian burial sites.

Day 6: We visit Myra, famed for its Roman theatre and rock hewn tombs. Walking through its port, Andriake, we uncover a giant cistern and granary built by the Emperor Hadrian.

Day 7: Into the mountains to Arykanda, the Turkish Delphi, where excavations have revealed a prosperous monumental city.

Day 8: On to Phaselis, seat of pirates who terrorised the region’s rich trade routes. Its three harbours now lie serene amid pine trees.

Day 9: To Antalya, the south’s most vibrant city, with a fortified harbour and museum full of marble statues. We visit Aspendos’ mighty aqueduct and extraordinary theatre.

Day 10: Roman Perge is a vast treasure house of ruins. We stroll through colonnades and shops, marbled bath-houses, a stadium, and fortifications.

Day 11: South to Olympos. On an ancient sacred way we visit the Chimaera, a natural phenomenon where flames burst from the ground, and legendary home of the mythical beast.

Day 12: West to Kale, ancient Simena, a mêlée of Lycian tombs and an Ottoman castle with vast views. One of the tour’s most romantic locations.

Day 13: We set off for pretty Kalkan, and inland to Xanthus, capital of ancient Lycia, where French archaeologists have been digging for half a century, uncovering more and more wonders every year.

Day 14: A last dip, then to Fethiye to visit its magnificent cliff tombs and a final chance to shop.

Day 15: Transfer to Dalaman airport.

More information from Peter Sommer Travels: