Today, Side is well-known as a seaside resort town boasting pristine beaches, sparkling blue water, beautiful natural features, and some of the best luxury hotels on the Mediterranean coast. While its reputation as a holiday destination only began during the 90’s tourism boom, the history of Side as a settlement is much longer, and for travellers who love to immerse in the culture of a place, there is plenty to be discovered.
Discover the Cultural Side of Side
Dating back to the eighth century BC, the ancient city is named after the Luwian term for “pomegranate”, and you won’t need to venture far to find evidence of the rich history that this Turkish town has to offer. You’ll find ruins around every corner, with temples, old streets, theatres and more to demonstrate the importance of the ancient settlement that was conquered, time and again. If you love stepping back in time during your travels, then Side – often spoken of as an open-air museum – is the perfect destination.
Here are three unmissable attractions to include during your stay.
The Roman Theatre
This is a true treasure trove of the ancient world. The theatre was built to hold an audience of 15,000 people, making it the largest in ancient Pamphylia. The walls may be crumbling, but you can still get a sense of the sheer size of the structure. Be sure to take a closer look at the reliefs painted on some of the stage walls.
Temples of Apollo and Athena
Dating back to 150AD, this was an important site for the ancient community: a temple dedicated to the God of light, beauty, and art. So it’s apt that you’ll find it located right next to the sparkling sea, which lights up magnificently during sunset. One tip: don’t forget your camera!
The Monumental Fountain
If you’re interested in how restoration works, you’ll love Nymphaeum, a.k.a the monumental fountain. It’s currently being repaired and restored, but you can still admire the craftsmanship of this second century AD structure.
Where to Stay:
Alexia Resort & Spa – Boasting beachfront views and all the luxury you would expect of a 5-star hotel, the Alexia is a paradise within a paradise. Guests have access to a private garden, spa, pool, and an excellent restaurant.
Carpe Diem Boutique Hotel – A luxury boutique hotel that provides the perfect base for exploring the sights and relaxing by the beach, which is only 400 metres away! Guests will enjoy beautifully designed, air-conditioned rooms, with a private balcony, and can expect bespoke service throughout their stay.
Aura Boutique Hotel – Aura offers guests a unique experience with panoramic views of the stunning natural landscape, as well as a private beach. This modern hotel offers all the amenities you’ll require, and is just a stone’s throw away from the best attractions, beaches, and restaurants.
How to Get There:
Turkey is a popular destination for many travellers, which makes travelling from the UK to Antalya easy. It’s important to keep in mind that prices vary depending on the time of year you plan to travel. The most expensive month is August, at around £190 return, and the cheapest is December at just £40. Many airlines offer flights to Antalya, but the most common is Jet2.
Once you’ve arrived in Turkey, I’d highly recommend that you pre book an airport transfer from Antalya Airport to Side. The journey is just under an hour, so having your airport transfer pre-arranged will make your trip as easy as possible. (There’s nothing more stressful than navigating public transport or tackling the roads yourself in a hired car.) A pre-booked airport transfer is always the first thing I sort out after my flights, and I urge you to do the same.
UK to AYT Flight Time: 4 hours 28 minutes
AYT to Side Distance: 68 kilometres
Shuttle Direct Transfer Time: 57 minutes
Types of Transfer
Shuttle Direct offers a number of airport transfer types that suit a range of budgets and needs. For a reliable airport transfer, Antalya to Side (and more!), I always recommend Shuttle Direct. Here is an introduction to the different transport types that they have to offer.
An airport taxi, Antalya to Side, is one of the easiest ways to get to your accommodation. The journey is close to an hour, so you’ll benefit from extra comfort and it’s a little quicker than travelling by bus. If I’m looking to treat myself, this is the option I choose.
Having said that, there is nothing wrong with the shuttle bus, especially from Shuttle Direct. A shared bus transfer from Antalya Airport to Side allows you to travel with other like-minded visitors and, who knows, you might meet some new friends! It’s also a little more affordable, which means more spending money during your stay.
Another step up from a taxi is the choice of a private transfer. Antalya airport to Side is roughly an hour’s drive, so having a private car will ensure you’re as comfortable as can be during your journey. Not only will you have privacy and more space for luggage, but you’ll also enjoy an air-conditioned ride. All you have to do is sit back and relax.
Last but by no means least, there is the minibus Antalya airport transfer. Similar to the shuttle bus, this is a shared transport but it carries fewer passengers, which can be more comfortable for some visitors. It might be a little slower than the private options, but with Shuttle Direct, you’ll get to where you need to go smoothly and safely.
Choosing the Right Transfer
Everyone is different, however, there are two main factors to consider when choosing your airport transfer type: cost and convenience. If you know you’ll have a lot of luggage, then a private transfer, Antalya Airport to Side, might be the best way. However, if you have any urgent questions about the options, just get in touch with Shuttle Direct and a member of their team will be able to help.
Cost: All the options offer great value for money, but only you know what you’re willing to spend on an airport transfer. If you’re happy to spend a little more for extra comfort, I’d definitely recommend the private car or taxi, as these offer the most privacy.
Convenience: Even if you’ve got your budget sorted, you still have to consider things such as how much luggage you’ll be travelling with – as well as your personal needs. If you need a little more space, then the private options or even the minibus will be better suited. However, some people find that the shared shuttle bus is the best for their budget and requirements.
About Shuttle Direct
Shuttle Direct has offered top-quality service for decades and now operates all over the world. Our friendly and experienced drivers will ensure that you get from A to B as smoothly as possible. Whether you’re looking for a cheaper shared service or something more luxurious, Shuttle Direct has you covered.