After leaving Antalya, we pass the greenhouses in Kemer, Phasalis, Tahtalı Mountain, and Kumluca and reach our first stop, Demre, after a 2-hour journey. We will visit the tomb and church of Nicholas, or Santa Claus, housed in a well preserved 4th-century Byzantine basilica (follow signs for "Aya Nicola"). Remembered for his acts of charity, he came to be seen as a protector of sailors and children. In 1087, thieves plundered Santa's tomb, escaping to Bari, Italy, with his bones and a funny red cap.
Today, the burial chapel in the basilica is correct as you enter. St. Nikolashouses his simple marble sarcophagus, which s located in a small niche immediately to your picture on the wall above his coffin Each December 6, the saint's birthday, is celebrated with a three-day festival and symposium after a lunch break. We drive to Finike; after passing the winding coastal road with the deep blue sea view of the Mediterranean Sea and gorgeous golden beaches, we arrive at Ucagiz harbor.
The main attraction around Kas is Kekova, a partially submerged Lycian city. A dozen Lycian sarcophagi surround both towns, some leaning on the village homes. Excursion boats visit Byzantine ruins, Kekova, and two fishing villages which flaunt a cliff honeycombed with Lycian tombs and a hill crowned with Simena castle. With a boat tour of approximately 2-3 hours, we will see the "sunken city," its port, its bath, and even its church, which was submerged in the earthquake. We also take a swimming and sunbathing break on this tour.
After breakfast, depart to Demre; we will visit the tomb of St. Nicholas and his church. St. Nicholas of Patara was a bishop here for a long time and lived in Myra in the 3rd century AD, one of Lycia’s largest cities and capital. The city of Myra, where the Church of St. Nicholas is located, became the capital of Lycia in the 5th century AD. Myra maintained its position as the capital city of the Lycian region from the 5th century to the end of the 14th century since it was where the famous saint of Orthodox Christians, Nikolaos was a bishop, died here, and his tomb was found here.
The renowned saint of the Christian world, Nicholas, was born in Patara and lived there until he became the bishop of Myra (Demre). Many stories about the life of Nicholas have survived. As Santa Claus, he distributed gifts to the children who became famous for the miracles he performed throughout his life. He became the patron saint of New York and Moskov with the name of Santa Klaus. He integrated with other reindeer legends in the Vikings and reached today's sleigh-riding Santa Claus type. In the 11th century, the Byzantine king and his wife showed particular interest and restored the destroyed church. And It was once fixed.
Then we will drive to Myra, just a few km to Demre. Myra Ancient City is small but has quite beautiful craftsmanship. Ancient theater original. The theater has a capacity of 10 thousand people. Photography lovers will love this city. The Ancient City of Myra carried out the sea transportation and trade of the region. It has a history dating back to V. BC. Capital of Lycia. Demre is especially famous for its Lycian Period rock tombs, the most remarkable structure. They carved designs similar to the houses of the living people into the rocks for the dead: Roman Theater Period and Byzantine Period St. Nicholas Church (Santa Claus).
Then we will drive to Ucagiz, For The Boat Trip to the Kekova Sunken City Tour. Because the boat tours are called Kekova Tour, the region that includes Ucagiz, Kalekoy, and Kekova Island is called Kekova. Kekova Island, a small and rocky island, is known as the Sunken City due to the city's ruins on its shores and under the sea. Swimming and anchoring are prohibited. While passing by boat, it is priceless to see the ruins of the Lycian port city of 2000 years ago. While visiting this place and watching the bottom of the sea, it is a beautiful feeling to know that it was once a city; you can see the stairs, roofs, structures, coffins, and doors on the surface, some under the water, and the visible stairs, potteries, and amphoras. It is lovely to swim alone or with your Family in unique bays. The magnificent scenery and the endless blue around you are priceless. You are resting in peace by passing through the underwater city. In the evening drive back to Antalya.
PS: If you wish, you can do an Extention; you may stay a few days more in Antalya or Kas. Or you can add the Cappadocia tour to your program.
* Kas Kekova Tour runs every day and is available all year round.
* The documents with details and confirmations will be e-mailed to you after booking.