Side (SEE-deh) was once idyllic, a traditional Turkish Mediterranean village amid marble Roman ruins on 2 km (1.2 miles) of unspoiled beach just an hour (65 km, 40 miles) east of Antalya or west of Alanya (map).
Tourism arrived with a vengeance in the 1980s, however, and although Side is still nice, it is now crowded in warm weather.
Both Turks and foreigners come for the perfect white sand beaches, the seaside restaurants and bars, the variety of lodgings (from cheap little pensions to luxury hotels), and the impressive Hellenistic and Romanruins.
Distances & Travel Times
Alanya: 63 km (39 miles) E, 1 hour
Anamur: 198 km (123 miles) SE, 3.75 hours
Ankara: 615 km (382 miles) NE, 9 hours
Antalya: 65 km (40 miles) W, 1 hour
Aspendos: 37 km (23 miles) NW, 40 minutes
Istanbul: 790 km (491 miles) NW, 13 hours
Konya: 300 km (186 miles) NE, 5 hours
Olimpos: 145 km (90 miles) SW, 3 hours
Perge: 58 km (36 miles) W, 1 hour
Selge (Altınkaya): 83 km (52 miles) N, 2 hours
—by Tom Brosnahan