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Out of season holidays in Antalya

Posted on December 11, 2023 by Bryony Eacott
Side image of the Antalya old town harbour, with beautifully bright sea and lots of boats moored up in the harbour.

You could argue that there’s no such thing as out of season in Antalya. 

If you like the idea of exploring narrow cobbled streets, strolling around market stalls with the locals and enjoying quiet beaches, holidays in Antalya could be the perfect out of season choice.

A female tourist walks towards the three arches at Hadrian's Gate in the old town of Antalya.

Discover Antalya’s quiet streets

Holidays in Antalya are usually built around the glorious long hours of sunshine and the beautiful stretch of shoreline, but take your trip in the winter and you’ll discover a town with a character often hidden to the summer crowds.

Streets that are busy in high season become quiet and quaint. The charm of these winding old lanes in Old Antalya is a delight to discover. It’s easy to spend hours gazing at the architecture – Greek and Ottoman – that gives these atmospheric streets their personality.

In the old town of Kaleici, the ancient stone city walls rise high into the piercing blue winter sky. You can photograph the clock tower and Roman arch here without having to jostle for a good view with other tourists.

Birds eye view of a beach in Antalya, with tourists and locals enjoying the bright blue sea and sunny weather. With the cloudy mountains and a paraglider in the distance.

Beach strolls in Antalya

A summer full of humid high temperatures has warmed the sea to a lavish level and swimming is divine at the end of the year. 

The golden beaches in Antalya are always a pull for summer holidaymakers. But in the winter the beaches are much quieter, so you can stroll along the shoreline in peace.

Café culture

You may find that some tourist bars and restaurants have more limited opening hours in the winter, but for the most part, out of season holidays in Antalya are a time to live alongside the locals. 

The café culture the Turkish love is still in full swing all year round and when the crowds have left, the locals reclaim their town. 

The pavement cafés and bars, usually full of holidaymakers, are now clustered with Antalyans enjoying a drink in the warm evening air, or lunch by the sea. It’s a great way to spend a few hours, soaking up the real Antalya and getting to know some of the friendly locals. 

Shopping in Antalya

There’s a subtle change in the demeanour of the people of Antalya in winter. People here are always friendly but in winter, the stress of the heat and busy trade lifts and a more laid-back way of life emerges. Antalyans relax in winter and the feeling is infectious.

The same can be said for the shops and markets. Carpet sellers who target tourists in summer have strangely disappeared in winter, perhaps leaving the peaceful winter town for more lucrative areas.

Markets and stores revert back to their more natural state and strolling around the stalls is a real pleasure at this time of year. 

All the vibrancy of the market stalls, the explosion of colour and scent, is still there, but sellers are more at ease and the locals chatter around you as they do their shopping with room to move.

Festivals in Antalya

There are some major draws to this city in the low season, but our favourite pick is the festivals.

Two fascinating arts celebrations arrive in Antalya in October, November and December, and these alone could prove to be a reason to visit at this time of year.

The Golden Orange Film Festival is the biggest film festival in the whole of Turkey and is held in Antalya during October. Showing independent films from all over the world, it’s a great way to enjoy, this is a chance to visit a major film festival without a major price tag.

If music is more your thing, Antalya hosts an International Piano Festival through November and December. This celebration of musical excellence features performances of classical, jazz and contemporary piano styles from an international arena.

Antalya is a Turkish city with a double life: In summer you can enjoy the high temperatures and beach life that tourists love to revel in here. But in winter Antalya loses its summer façade and reveals its true self. The out of season Antalya is culture-rich, pleasantly warm, quiet and a truly local experience.

Where is Antalya?

Antalya is a popular family-friendly resort in Turkey that’s bordered by the Mediterranean Sea and the Taurus Mountains.

It’s the fastest-growing city in Turkey and is best known for its mild climate and great beaches. It’s known as the “capital of tourism” in Turkey, making it a popular holiday destination, even in low season.

How long is the flight from the UK to Antalya? 

A typical flight from London to Antalya takes around 4 hours and 30 minutes. 

You can fly to Antalya from most major UK airports with easyJet, Wizz Air, Jet2 and TUI.

Antalya flight map

Is Antalya an expensive place to visit?

Antalya is one of the more expensive cities in Turkey. It is a well-known tourist destination, meaning activities and attractions will cost more than other cities. 

The cost of your trip will depend on what you choose to do, where you stay and how conscious you are about spending. Like most places, you’ll pay more to eat and sleep in among the hustle and bustle of the tourist hotspots. Staying on the outskirts, and choosing restaurants away from the crowds can help you to save money.

But overall a trip to Turkey is usually cheaper than visiting other popular countries in Europe, like France, Spain and Italy. 

What is Antalya famous for?

Antalya is famous for its blend of natural beauty, rich history, and vibrant culture. From its Roman Relics to the old town of Kaleiçi and the beautiful sandy beaches, Antalya is known as a popular destination for travellers from around the world.

Perfect for a visit during quieter tourist months, where you can explore the years of history and discover the ancient wonders without the crowds.

What is the weather like in Antalya in winter?

The months of November-February are the coldest in Antalya, with temperatures dropping to round 9°C and rainfall increasing.

The shoulder months of summer, June and September, are some of the best times to visit Antalya. There’s fewer crowds than July and August and the cooler temperatures make sightseeing more bearable. 

Don’t forget to pack your travel insurance! In Turkey you can’t use your GHIC or EHIC, making it even more important to make sure you are covered for any medical emergencies. 

If you’ve already had the chance to visit Antalya, why not try Marmaris?

by Bryony Eacott

Bryony is Staysure’s Junior Content Executive. Not a fan of cold weather, you’ll usually find her on holiday somewhere hot and sunny. Paris and Reims are on her travel list for 2023.