Backwater beach resort

AdrasanThese days it’s hard to find any part of Turkey's south coast that has not been developed almost to death.

One of the rare exceptions is the area west of Antalya that falls within the Beydağları Olympos Milli Parkı (Bey Mountains National Park).

It was to here that a group of refugees from the bigger resorts fled in the 1990s, establishing inland from the lovely beach at Olympos a collection of treehouses of varying degrees of authenticity and then at Çıralı a low-key bricks-and-mortar resort much favoured by people of alternative tendencies.

These days Olympos and Çıralı retain much of their laidback appeal but neither is exactly off-the-beaten-track anymore. Across the mountain to the west, however, the little resort of Adrasan – or Çavuşköy, to give it its modern name - still slumbers all but forgotten except for the few months of the Turkish school holidays.

Adrasan is a sleepy sort of place with little to do except swim, sunbathe, take a boat trip to neighbouring Ceneviz Limanı (Genoese Harbour)?

Sadly, it's not as picturesque as Olympos since the long strip of beach is backed by a rough dirt track road and then by a succession of hotels which, while small and discreetly hidden from the beach, were mostly designed for a package-holiday boom that failed to materialise.

To make the most of Adrasan you really need a car. With four wheels you have the option of staying somewhere quiet and discreet but which at the same time offers easy access to the more specific attractions round the bay in Olympos.

Adrasan straddles the Lycian Way making it a great place for walkers.

At the northern end of the bay Beşcam Dağı (Five Pines Mt) looms over the beach, separating Adrasan from Olympos. It’s a tough climb up the mountain and certainly not for everyone. A walk in the opposite direction  leads to the twin lighthouses of Taşlık Burnu (Cape Gelidonia) but still involves a lot of strenuous up and downhill scrambling.

The modern village of Çavuşköy lies two km inland from the beach but is not exciting, its most striking feature being an unlikely statue of Atatürk clad in opera cloak and hat.

Eating and drinking

The one overwhelming reason to visit Adrasan has to be the Paradise Café. This aptly-named restaurant can be found by walking along the river that runs inland from the northern end of the beach. It is the last of a chain of copy-cat enterprises with tables set up on wooden walkways over the river. Here you can recline on cushions on a wooden kösk or eat at a more conventional table set up on a wooden platform. As you tuck into delectable mezes and trout, ducks and geese will come floating past to inspect you – as, almost certainly, will a selection of cats and dogs belonging to Fikret and Jill, the charmingly hospitable owners.Adrasan2


The best options lie at opposite ends of the beach. At the southern end the Ford is a pleasingly designed small hotel with wooden balconies reminiscent of those in old Kalkan looking out over a pool which, in turn, looks out over Beşcam Dağı.

At the northern end the Paradise Café also offers a few simple rooms which might make eating there even more enjoyable.

Otherwise, of the hotels backing onto the beach the best choices might be the friendly if unimaginative Ön Hotel or the Sazlık China House, with its unlikely line-up of Chinese lanterns above the entrance.

Ford Hotel. Tel: 0242-883 1044

Paradise Café. Tel: 0242-883 1267

Sazlık China House. Tel: 0242-883 1315

Ön Hotel. Tel: 0242-883 1099

Travel info

One reason why Adrasan has remained relatively undervisited is that it's poorly served by public transport.

In high summer there are a couple of dolmuşes a day to Kumluca (18km) where you can connect with transport along the coast road between Antalya and Fethiye.

At other times of year there may be no transport at all, leaving you to hitch a ride or pay for an expensive "taxi" connection.

Day trip destinations






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