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A peaceful Turkish riverside resort

While seaside breaks in Turkey might get all the attention, Dalyan holidays are all about the river. A pretty waterway rolls through this farming town-turned-resort, with a beach at one end and a lake at the other, and activities on holidays to Dalyan centre around it. Relax at one of the many riverside restaurants, stroll along its tree-lined banks or follow its meandering curves by boat. On the border of the ancient kingdoms of Lycia and Caria, Dalyan is also home to impressive ruins, which can be admired from the water.

Take a boat across the river and follow the path past the Kings’ Tombs – temple-like structures carved into the cliffs – to the 3,000-year-old acropolis of Kaunos. Fancy some beach time? Hop in a ‘dolmuş’ minibus for sunbathing and swimming at Iztuzu Beach, where wooden stakes mark out protected loggerhead turtle nesting sites. With so much to see and do, on holidays to Dalyan, you can bank on having a good time.

Explore our map of Dalyan

Your Dalyan questions, answered

Dalyan is a tale of two cuisines: find international dishes in the riverside restaurants, and down-to-earth Turkish food in the cafés on lanes off Cumhuriyet Caddesi, the main square.
As well as ceramic turtles, gift shops around town sell beautiful handmade textiles, silk scarves, flowery Iznik tiles and jewellery fit for an Ottoman princess.
The warm climate of southwest Turkey means that Dalyan has hot summers and mild winters, although December and January tend to be rainy. If you visit in the off-season, you’ll have the chance to experience local life close-up with few other travellers around. However, if you want to swim and sunbathe, the best time to go is between May and October. June, July and September are the hottest months, with average temperatures in the high twenties.
You can do your bit by choosing an eco-friendly tour on a boat with a propeller guard (most will have a Kaptan June Sea Turtle Conservation Foundation flag).
Dalyan has only one beach close at hand, but it’s a really impressive one. Four and a half kilometres long, you can drive to Iztuzu Beach in twenty minutes. The loggerhead turtle sanctuary here draws visitors from all over the world. Ekincik Bay and Bacardi Bay are also easy to reach from Dalyan and are popular destinations for a day trip by car or boat. The heart of Dalyan’s life and culture is its river, a gorgeous natural feature and a wonderful form of slow travel.
The most famous inhabitants of Dalyan are its loggerhead turtles, who nest on nearby Iztuzu Beach. These beautiful protected animals are much loved here. They even have their own festival. A Dalyan holiday is an opportunity to learn more about the turtles and support their preservation. The wide Dalyan Cayi river, which flows past the town and joins the Aegean Sea, is another much-loved feature. There are boat excursions and river cruises to make your holiday truly special. It’s no wonder that so many people return to Dalyan year after year.
With a relaxed pace of life, cheerful hospitality, and various trips and activities, Dalyan is well known as a child-friendly destination. The loggerhead turtle sanctuary at Iztuzu Beach, run by the famous 'Captain June' Haimoff, is a particular favourite with children and young people. But a Dalyan holiday isn’t just for kids. If you appreciate the beauty of nature and the warmth of Turkish culture, you'll find plenty to love about this unique corner of southwest Turkey. Couples, groups and solo travellers will find Dalyan a haven of comfort and tranquillity.
Dalyan is close to two of Turkey’s most spectacular historic sights: the Lycian rock tombs and the ruined ancient city of Kaunos. Kaunos is just across the river from Dalyan, but there’s no bridge. The quickest and cheapest option is to be ferried across in a rowboat. Once you get to Kaunos, you can see a Roman theatre and baths, a Byzantine basilica, Greek and Roman temples and some rock tombs. An hour’s drive east of Dalyan, you’ll see another set of spectacular rock tombs built into the hillside by the ancient civilisation of Lycia.
Dalyan is about an hour's drive from the buzzing port city of Fethiye. If you’d like to make a trip to Fethiye a part of your Dalyan holiday, you don't need a car. You’ll find local tour operators offering affordable excursions. That means it’s easy to get there and back without worrying about the details – you can even arrange lunch as part of the deal. However, if you’d prefer to go it alone, you can drive or take a taxi to the nearby town of Ortaca, about ten minutes away. From Ortaca, a direct bus will take you to Fethiye in under an hour.

Hotels in Dalyan

Konak Su Hotel
81 reviews
Metin Hotel
372 reviews
Portakal Hotel
199 reviews
Yavuz Hotel
120 reviews