Kas Tourist Attractions
Southwest coast (Mediterranean)Situation and ImportanceThe idyllic little port of Kas stands in a small bay near the southern tip of Lycia. The most easterly of the Greek islands Kastellorizo (Megisti; Turkish Meis) lies just offshore. The houses line the slopes surrounding the main ancient harbor, which is protected by a breakwater.Holiday resortThanks to its beautiful setting and the sailing facilities it offers, Kas has become a popular tourist resort with hotels, guest-houses and a good camp-site. Boat trips are available to the many fascinating places along the coastline of tiny coves and bays as well as the Greek island of Kastellorizo (Meis).
The present town occupies the site of ancient Antiphellos (Lycian Habesa) and serves as the port for the Pinarbesi hinterland and Phellos which lies opposite on a steep-sided hill. The principal sights are a Lycian sarcophagus in the center of the little town, a well-preserved ancient theater on the west side of town (with a fine view over the bay to the island of Kastellorizo), the remains of the ancient town walls near the shore and Lycian rock tombs to the northeast.
Bronze Age Shipwreck
Off the promontory of Ulu Burun to south of Kas a shipwreck dating from 14th/13th century B.C. was found in 1984 by Turkish and American underwater archeologists. Some valuable bronze artifacts were recovered.
The coastline between Kas and Kale has a wealth of historic sites. No less than seventeen large-scale settlements have been discovered in the mountain region of Yavu, along the southern section of the coast and the offshore island of Kekova. The historical names for many of these sites are not yet known. Many interesting remains including ancient farmsteads, sarcophagi, Lycian fortresses and fortified settlements are often hidden away in the undergrowth, but the local people usually know their whereabouts.
The fishing village of Üçagiz, originally Tristoma, lies in Tristomas Bay and well sheltered from the open sea. The bay is situated to the west of Kas next to the ancient settlement of Teimiussa, which as early as fourth century B.C. was under the command of the Lycian ruler Perikles von Limyra. As well as a few relics on the acropolis, a settlement in the east and a 50m/164ft harbor wall (outside the village under water), there are also two burial grounds one to the north and one to the east. Many of the graves which include family tombs and sarcophagi belong to citizens of Myra and Kyaneai.
On the eastern peninsula of Tristomas Bay, a medieval castle looks down over the tiny village of Kaleüçagiz. The site of ancient Simena dating from the fourth century B.C. usually has to be reached by boat. The castle was built on the foundations of an ancient citadel. Part of the village can be found inside the castle walls alongside the remains of a temple. Below the fortifications stands a seven-tiered theater with space for 300 seats - an indication that the settlement was not a large one. To the west is the town and in the water on the shore line below lie the well-maintained ruins of the Titus Baths (A.D. 79-81).Further west can be found a necropolis which contains mostly Roman sarcophagi in the Lycian style. More sarcophagi and remains are to be seen underwater.
At the extreme southeastern tip of the Yavu mountain region, the ancient River Andrakos meets the plain of Kale (Demre/Myra). At this point a wide marshy valley extends out on both sides of the river between the mountain region and the coastal hills of Myra and Andriake. The name of Antiochos III was linked with the town of Andriake as early as 197 B.C.The ancient harbor is now marshland. The Andrakos flows down from its source in the karst rock passing an ancient water-mill and divides the town into north and south. The north town is mainly sand dunes with a still recognizable ruined church. Several buildings in the south town are in good condition including a warehouse, harbor wall, granarium (grain store), temple, market-place, parts of the harbor road, residences, water tanks, a number of churches and chapels. A wall surrounded the whole town and an aqueduct supplied water from the karst spring.Outside the walls an extensive necropolis lies on the northern slopes behind the nymphaeum. In the southwestern corner two watch towers stand on either side of a protective wall.
Some 7km/4.5mi east of Yavu behind the village of Gölbasi, a metalled road leads north up to the ancient town of Trysa. Located at the northern end of the acropolis stands a heroon, a fourth century B.C. shrine of an important Trysan dynast and the site's best-known relicentury The famous 20m/65ft long and 3m/10ft wide heroon frieze, showing 600 figures, was taken from inside the enclosure and can now be seen in the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna.
Due north of the coast road above the harbor and village of Yavu, the steep cliff of Kyaneai rises up. This Lycian town a large settlement even in the fourth century B.C. was the see of a bishop. Three towers surmount the town walls. Interesting sights within the town include a number of sarcophagi, several rock tombs, the enormous town wall, the remains of buildings, market-place, water tanks on the acropolis and a large theater at the foot of a gentle incline with 25 rows of seating (superb view).
50km/31mi east of Kas at the mouth of the Demre Dere (Myros in antiquity) lies a wide coastal plain, now an area of plastic-covered greenhouses where vegetables, particularly aubergines and tomatoes, are cultivated. The little town of Kale (Demre) occupies the site of the important Lycian town of Myra, which was visited by the Apostle Paul on his first journey to Rome in A.D. 61. In the third century St Nicholas became Bishop of Myra. Theodosius II made Myra the capital of Lycia.At the foot of the acropolis, some impressive remains can be seen. Mostly hewn from the rock, the large theater and many Lycian rock tombs, some of them dating from the fourth century, are particularly interesting.
Kale - Basilica of St Nicholas
In Kale stands the early medieval domed Basilica of St Nicholas. Apart from minor restoration work, the church has been preserved in its original 11th century form. Built into the sides of the nave are second and third century sarcophagi. Remains of frescoes can be seen in the apse and at certain points on the wall.
The coast road between Finike and Kale (29km/18mi) follows the coastline at some points, passing picturesque rocky coves with tempting places to bathe in crystal-clear water. The port of Finike (formerly Phoinika) has little to offer tourists other than manymi of beautiful beaches with fine sand on the shores of the bay. The coast road east leads to the industrial town of Kumluca.
10km/6mi northeast of Finike near the village of Zengerler at the foot of Mount Tocat stands the ancient town of Limyra (fifth century B.C.), one of the oldest settlements in Lycia.On the hill to the north of the site an upper and a lower acropolis can be seen with remains of a Byzantine church and a Roman theater on the latter. On the crag to the south stands the so-called Heroon of Perikles (ca. 370 B.C.) hewn from the rock in the form of a temple. Other notable features are the Tomb of Gaius Caesar (d. A.D. 4), the tall Sarcophagus of Katabura, the Tomb of Tebersele (both fourth century) and three large groups of Lycian rock tombs.
Located on the slopes of the Akdag looking out over the River Arykandos are the remains Arykanda, with a Greek theater, forum, and other ruins.