Holidays to Manavgat in Turkey give you a ringside view of some spectacular waterfalls. Meanwhile the beaches, Roman ruins and buzzing nightlife are only 10 minutes away.
Set in the Antalaya region of Turkey on the south-west coast, Manavgat is not really like other holiday resorts. It’s a small, inland spot that comes with a quiet vibe – but what sets it apart from the pack is its famous river and waterfalls. And although it’s a great retreat, you won’t feel cut off here – 10 minutes' drive gets you to beaches, Roman ruins and a buzzing nightlife at Side.
It may not have a beach, but Manavgat has plenty of water to go round. The river splits the town in half, with waterfalls cascading along the route. In places, there are cafés and restaurants where you can dip your feet in the water while you eat. Rafting and canoeing are popular here, but for something more swim-friendly head to Side – the three-kilometre stretch of sand comes with calm, shallow sea.
Daytrips to ancient ruins
Manavgat puts you in a good position to see some top Roman sights. Closest to home is Side, with its massive amphitheatre and Temple of Apollo, a real neck-craner. Just 15 minutes by car gets you to Seleukeia, where the remains of an ancient marketplace, city hall and baths still stand in the forest. And then there’s the theatre at Aspendos, about 45 minutes drive west of the resort – this 2,000-year-old wonder used to seat 15,000 people.