Antalya’s sprawling shoreline is the obvious choice for water sports. Caves, coves, islands waterfalls… the list goes on. As worthy as every coastal option is, there’s also a whole lot of water-based action happening inland too. Canyoning, white water rafting – and even a gentle river side stroll for those looking to experience life on the drier side of things. Whether you scuba dive in Antalya or stay afloat on a luxury yacht – do take to the water in some way. If you think it would be a shame to miss out on a gentle bob past Turkey’s riviera – imagine the FOMO hit when you miss the sea turtles that drop by every now and then…
What’s your scuba preference? Wrecks, night dives, caves or reefs? Perhaps you’re looking for all of the above? Happily, scuba diving in Antalya comes fully packaged with options. Stingray Diving can get you in the water with courses, tours and specific dives in Antalya. If we had to choose one? Seeing the eerie glow of bioluminescence on a night dive never fails to delight us. Though, wrecks also hold a special place in our hearts. Sunken ships come in all shapes and sizes here, though, depending on your scuba leanings, it’s often the creatures that set up home among the broken hulls that are far more intriguing. In these waters, expect to see plenty of octopii, eels and crabs – along with grouper, rays and barracuda.
How do you feel about a road trip? There’s no shortage of things to do in Antalya, but some activities are worth breaching the city limits for. Two hours east along the coast, you’ll find Alanya. Once there, the snorkel spot is Kleopatra beach – a rumoured spot for turtles. Looking for clear waters a little closer to Antalya? Pop along with your flippers to Kaputas beach or Mermeli beach. Both require sturdy legs – as there are steep steps down to small, but almost perfectly formed coves. Despite the pre-beach workout, both get busy in the height of summer. If you like a little more coastline to explore, Konyaalti delivers. The clientele on the sands tends to be upscale – so do pack your best swimwear ensembles.
Orbzii tip: The turtles at Alanya attract the usual fleet of tourist boats looking to spot the slow moving creatures from above. To avoid getting caught up in rush hour – snorkel well before 12pm.
While all eyes are on the coast, turn your water sports gaze inland in Antalya. 40 minutes south of the city centre, you’ll find the Göynük Canyon. Handily turned into an adventure park by some eco-entrepreneurs, you can canyon, zip line, walk or swim in the Eco Fun Adventure Park. Impressive, vast and fun as it may be – it’s dwarfed by the gorge in Kalkan. The largest in Turkey, and second largest in Europe, Saklikent gorge lies in wait around 2 hours 40 mins away from Antalya central. Make the trip and you’ll find 18km of gorge to explore. 16 caves will need a thorough rummage about in and the waterfalls are handy spots to take a shower.
Orbzii tip: Bring some canyon-proof shoes with you. Saklikent does rent out water shoes – but are too rigid to keep your feet blister free for the full 18km. Even in the height of summer, both canyons offer respite from Turkey’s soaring temperatures – as the steep cliffs keep out the sun.
If you suspect Antalya boat trips are going to be nothing more than casual cruises along the coast, you’re in for a surprise. Waterfalls, ancient cities, islands, ruins and white water rafting are just some of the options. Novaraft are the team to get you safely from A to B on Turkey’s rivers. On the coast? Antalya Lux have a rather upscale selection of yachts and motor cruisers for when lazy days idling off shore appeal. Of course, you could skip the idling and get yourself straight to the islands and ruins. A far better option. Head east along the coast – you’re looking for Duden Waterfalls, keep sailing east and you’ll find Belek. Known as Turkey’s riviera the shore is peppered with Antalya golf courses and 5 star lodgings. Island hopping is a little further afield to the south west – perhaps one for more experienced skippers?
To jet ski Antalya’s coastline – start at Lara Beach. In fact, this epic stretch of sand, just east of the city, is THE spot for most watersports in Antalya. Yes, you’ll spot more than Turkey’s fair share of banana boats, but there’s parasailing, kitesurfing and diving to be found too. If that all sounds a little traffic-heavy, you’d be right. The sands – and sea – do get busy here, but the range of activities makes it worthwhile. Need your sands to be a little more central? Konyaalti’s much more pebble-strewn than Lara’s soft shore, but for a quick whizz across the Antalya coast? It more than meets the brief. You can be back on land and browsing for a bargain in an Antalya shopping centre in minutes.
We would tell you to dive straight into Antalya’s water sport scene … but you’ll need an essential bit of kit first. The Orbzii app. It won’t keep the sand out of your suitcase – far from it. But it is THE place to plan and book your Antalya adventures.