Events in Antalya

The Antalya region on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey is the second most popular holiday destination in the country. This prestigious status comes about for many reasons. As part of the scenic Turkish Riviera, it attracts yachting enthusiasts and the famous Lycian trail, a 516 km walk covering ancient ruins is a favoured trek for history lovers. Antalya also has an impressive collection of gorgeous beaches instantly earning it automatic inclusion into the most guidebooks.

Naturally as a hub for foreign visitors, the yearly calendar of things to do in the region is bursting with events and festivals. From local get-togethers in the historical resort of Side to sporting events in cosmopolitan Kas, no traveller will ever find themselves in a state of boredom. Certain events are more popular than others, so we asked Natalie from Turkish Travel Blog gives us a round-up of the most famous:

Artists Get Creative at the Antalya Sand Sculpture Festival

Run throughout summer in the Lara Beach area of Antalya, kids especially enjoy exploring the huge and extremely impressive sculptures made from sand. Every year, participants pull out all the stops to produce jaw-dropping copies of monuments, animals, landmark buildings or people.

Previous pieces admired because of their excellence include a large copy of the laughing Buddha, a smooth-lined model of the Sphinx in Egypt and a decorative depiction of a mermaid warrior.

International Children's Festival

For six days in April, streets throughout Antalya come alive with colourful costumes, musical parades and dance shows. Kids from all over the world join in an extended celebration of Children's Day, a yearly event and national holiday of Turkey that pays respect to future generations. Wearing costumes from their own countries, boys and girls join together to perform gymnastic shows, folklore dancing, ballet shows and musical performances. Also on the agenda are modern dance and traditional street games.

Anatolian Fire: The Best Dance of Turkey

Think of the classic River Dance show from Ireland, and imagine a Turkish version that likewise leaves you stunned by the physical and mental abilities of the dancers. Anatolian Fire takes on a modern twist of classic Anatolian folklore dancing that stems from an area in the middle of Turkey. Along with impressive costumes, and a superb stage setting, the show portrays a musical version of the story of Troy. Run since 2007 all over Turkey, they always perform to sold-out ticket audiences and for a few months every year, bring their talents to the Antalya region. 

Aspendos Opera and Ballet

Since 1994, the Aspendos Opera and Ballet Festival appears in Antalya during September, to sell out performances attended by lovers of dance art and fine music. Held in the ancient Antique Theatre of Aspendos, musicians and dancers combine with the fine acoustics of the theatre to produce magical shows that often make headline news in the country's national papers.


As well as the above four festivals, Antalya hosts many other events paying homage to various themes from all over the world. Jazz lovers head to Aspendos during July for some foot-tapping musical performances. While the creme de la creme is the Golden Orange Film Festival in October, the most important in Turkey.

More Things To Do ideas

Find more Things To Do in Antalya: Ancient Harbour of AlanyaAntalya Annual Festival | Antalya Golf Courses | | Hadrian's GateKaraalioglu Park | Kursunlu WaterfallsMount Tahtali | Nightlife Antalya | Yivli Minare mosque 


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