This Side area guide will help you understand what a beautiful location this really is. Side is a lovely, historic town with modern architecture, fashionable boutiques, and restaurants. Side’s golden sands and sparkling Mediterranean waters have made it a popular destination for tourists and homebuyers seeking a relaxing escape.
The village of Selimiye was renamed Side when it opened to tourism in the 1950s. Today, Side is one of the few places in the world where you can see well-preserved Roman ruins in the style of Ephesus and modern structures side by side. If you are interested in buying a Turkish property, check out what are the benefits of buying Turkish property on a complex?
Where is Side?
Side is a Mediterranean resort town on Turkey’s southern coast. It is a historic port city with long beaches and Greco-Roman ruins. The ruins of the 2nd-century Antique Theatre, which could seat up to 15,000 spectators, are located in the centre. Near the harbour are the white marble columns of the Hellenistic Temple of Athena. Other sites abound, with artifacts housed at the Side Museum, a restored Roman bath complex.
Beaches in Side
Side is almost entirely encircled by stunning golden-sand beaches that spread out like wings along the shore, providing enough space for those with the energy to walk far enough to find a private patch. The soft golden sand on this Side is picture-perfect. The West Beach is closer to the hotels and has calmer weather, making it suitable for watersports, but the East Beach is more secluded. This is a little rockier, but it’ll be less busy, and it’s where many locals hang out.
Hot spots in Side
Many of Side’s ancient ruins can still be seen today, giving the town a distinct charm. Side is a perfect destination for families and retirees, with miles and miles of golden sand.
The 15,000-seat Roman theatre and forum, situated in the town’s centre, is a must-see. The original Bath House has been converted into a museum that provides details about the town. The Temple of Apollo is the most well-known landmark. This 2,000-year-old Roman temple is located near the harbour on the peninsula’s eastern tip. This is a great place to see the sunset over the water.
Shopping in Side
The main streets of Side are lined with shops selling a wide selection of products. There are numerous bargains on everything from bespoke handicrafts to jewellry and Turkish carpets. A weekly market is also kept on Hand, where you can have a good time and haggle over prices.
Dining out in Side
Near the old town’s port, there are a plethora of fish restaurants. The family-run Ocakbasi restaurant, located across from the Roman Baths in the Old Town, serves affordable Turkish cuisine in a beautiful garden surrounded by ruins. Try Aphrodite at the harbour or Karma directly behind it for fine dining and excellent views of the sea. Take a look around since several restaurants have scattered stonework from the original temples and cobblestone avenues.
Nightlife in Side
Downtown Side is the place to go if you want to enjoy the nightlife. In the midst of the ruins, there’s also a nightclub. Locals visit the stone bar at the ancient harbour, just before the Apollo Temple, a great place to watch the sunset. However, since Side is a quiet town, the evenings seem to be comfortable.
To explore the many ancient ruins in Side, make sure you wear comfortable shoes. You can take boat trips to other locations or go on a dolphin hunt from harbour. Dolmus, or minibuses, are a cheap and enjoyable way to get around. Taxis are good, but make sure you know how much your ride will cost before getting in.
How do you reach Side?
Side is just 45 minutes from Antalya, the Mediterranean’s second busiest airport. It’s also one of the few Turkish Airports with year-round service from the United Kingdom.