Patara is undoubtedly the pearl of the Turkish Riviera. But if you're waiting for a story about the archeological site of the Lycian capital, Patara, I'm sorry, it's not now. Now it will be only about the beach, and to begin with we will dispel some myths.
Myths about Patara
Myth one - the length of the beach. For some reason, often in the literature and descriptions of this place there is information that the length of Patara beach is 18-20 km. This is not true. The length of the beach is "only" 12 km.
Myth two - the beach can not go through. From northeast to southwest due to length, surf, sand and primarily due to the lack of a bridge over the Xanth River. No - you can! And the main obstacle is the river Xanthos or Xanth. It is located about five kilometers from the beginning of the beach in the north. By the way, the river was navigable in the past, and the ships went by it to Xanthos itself, which had its own port! And so, the river is forced by the sea, on a remote spit. Depth there is no more than to the waist of an adult man.
Myth three - you can not stand on the beach with a tent. In fact, on the southeastern part of the beach, from about the left bank of the river Xanthos and to the archeological site of Patara, there is a protected area and you can not stand there. In these places, Caretta-Caretta sea turtles lay their eggs. There is not much possible yet, about which there are appropriate signs on the shore.
But in the north-western part of Patara, between the rivers Karadere and Xantos, there are no such signs! Moreover, on the northern edge of the beach, at the confluence of the Karadere River, there is a campsite Patara Green Park . And at the mouth of Xanthos, on the right bank, there is a wonderful wild campsite with tent sites, water supply, garbage cans, and even a plastic toilet! The road is suitable here, so you can drive.
In my opinion, there are two of them. The first is a small stone island 2 km from the Patara Greenpark campsite and so close to the shore that you can wade there.
The second is the Dune. A huge sand hill made of the same sand as the beach. It is 2 km from a café on the south-western edge of the beach. The dune is quite high - about 50 meters, and its top is about 700 meters from the surf line.
How to get to Patara
The most convenient way is to come by rented car. And if by public transport, then so: From Fethiye from the local bus station there is a dolmus "Fethiye - Karadere". Go to the final, then go 500 meters ahead and in front of you is camping "Greenpark Patara". Go through it or go to the right and you are on the beach.
There are at least two options from Antalya and both need to get to Gelemish. This is a resort village near the Lycian Patara. At the bus station in Antalya you need to get on the dolmus to Kinik. This is probably the longest route along the sea on the D400 highway. You need to get off at the turn to Patara / Gelemish. Usually there are local dolmus, which will take you to Gelemish, it is about 3 km. Then walk about 2-2.5 km along the road past the Patara Archaeological Reserve. Be prepared for the fact that the entrance to the beach is paid, payment is made at the checkpoint at the entrance to the complex.
The second option, from Antalya you get to Kasha. And from the bus station Kasha, there are dolmus that also go to Gelemish and then directly to the entrance to the beach.
On foot. Lycian Trail. If you follow the classics from west to east, then after the Gavuragili - Pydnee Section trail will reach the north-western edge of the beach in half an hour. If you go from east to west, then after crossing the Kalkan-aqueduct Delikkemera (aqueduct Patari) trail winding through the woods, go down directly to Gelemish. Then on the road past the Archaeological Patara.
Where to stay
In the north, a campsite has been mentioned many times, where you can put up a tent or rent a bungalow. There are restaurants, toilets, Wi-Fi. Parking will be almost on the beach.
In the south you can not stand on the beach, so the village remains Gelemish with its tourist infrastructure: a large number of different hotels, guesthouses, motels, restaurants, cafes and shops.
What to do
Take a walk, sunbathe, swim! You can build figures out of sand, you can roll over in the sand, rolling down from the Dune. You can sit in a cafe. And be sure to bring a camera! Long, long beach and surf allows you to take cool photos. And be sure to wait for the sunset, when the sun sets in the sea, the pictures will be amazing!
Konstantin Klinov, 2022