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Kaleici

Antalya's historical district begins at the main square called Kale Kapısı (Fortress Gate), which is marked by an old stone clock tower (saat kalesi) and a statue of Attalus IIof Pergamum, the city's founder. To the northeast is the Iki Kapılar Hanı, a sprawling bazaar dating to the late 15th century.

Walk south along Uzun Çarşi Sokak, the street opposite the clock tower. On the left is the 18th-century Tekeli Mehmet Paşa Camii, a mosque built by then Beylerbey (Governor of Governors) and repaired extensively in 1886 and 1926. Note the beautiful Arabic inscriptions in the coloured tiles above the windows. more


Wander further into this protected zone; many of the gracious old Ottoman houses have been restored and converted into pensions, boutique hotels and shops. To the east and at the top of Hesapçi Sokak is the monumental Hadriyanüs Kapısı (Hadrian's Gate, also known here as Üçkapılar or the 'Three Gates'), erected during the Roman emperor's visit to Antalya in 130 BC.

The Roman harbour at the base of the slope was Antalya's lifeline from the 2nd century BC until late in the 20th century, when a new port was constructed about 12km west of the city, at the far end of Konyaaltı Plajı. The harbour was restored during the 1980s and is now a marina for yachts and excursion boats.

In the southern reaches of Kaleiçi is the Kesik Minare (Truncated Minaret, a stump of a tower marking the ruins of a substantial building) that played many roles over the century. Built originally as a 2nd-century Roman temple, it was converted into the Byzantine Church of the Virgin Mary in the 5th century and a mosque in 1361. Fire destroyed most of it in the 19th century but it is still possible to see bits of Roman and Byzantine marble from the outside.

At the southwestern edge of Kaleiçi, on the corner with Karaalioğlu Parkı, a large, attractive, flower-filled park with good views, rises Hıdırlık Kalesi, a 14m-high tower in the ancient walls from the 2nd century AD.

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Kaleici

Antalya's historical district begins at the main square ...

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