Kayaköy: Exploring the Abandoned Ghost Town in Turkey

Exploring the Fascinating History of Kayakoy Ghost Village in Fethiye

Kayakoy, also known as the Ghost Village, is a fascinating and hauntingly beautiful place to visit in Fethiye.

The village is located just a short drive from the town of Fethiye, and it is a popular destination for tourists who want to learn more about the history of this abandoned town.

History of Kayakoy

Kayakoy was once a thriving Greek village known as Karmylassos, which was inhabited for centuries.

The village was an important center for the Greek Orthodox Church, and it was home to a number of churches and chapels.

However, during the population exchange between Greece and Turkey in 1923, the Greek inhabitants were forced to leave Kayakoy, and the village was left abandoned.

The village remained uninhabited for decades, and it was only in recent years that it has become a popular tourist attraction.

Kayakoy Ghost Village

Today, Kayakoy is known as the Ghost Village, and it is a fascinating place to explore. The village is made up of over 500 abandoned houses, churches, and other buildings that are now in ruins.

Road in Kayakoy

Walking through the village, you can see the remnants of what was once a thriving community, including the old school, the church, and the town square.

Despite its eerie atmosphere, Kayakoy is a beautiful place to visit. The village is surrounded by olive groves and forests, and there are stunning views of the surrounding hills and mountains.

Visiting Kayakoy

Kayakoy is easily accessible from the town of Fethiye, and it is a popular day trip destination for tourists. Visitors can explore the village on their own, or they can join a guided tour to learn more about the history of the town.

One of the most popular things to do in Kayakoy is to explore the ruins of the old churches and chapels. Some of these buildings have been restored, while others are in a state of disrepair.

Abandoned buildings in Kayakoy

Another popular activity in Kayakoy is hiking. There are several hiking trails that lead from the village into the surrounding hills and mountains, offering stunning views of the countryside.

Bars & Restaurants In Kayakoy

When it comes to dining in Kayakoy, you will be spoiled for choice with its wide selection of bars and restaurants. Whether you want to enjoy traditional Turkish cuisine or international fare, Kayakoy has plenty of options to satisfy your taste buds.

Some popular places to check out include:

1. Cin Bal Restaurant

Cin Bal Restaurant is known for its mouth-watering barbecue dishes and stunning views of the village.

Located on a hilltop, the restaurant offers a panoramic view of Kayakoy, making it an ideal spot for a romantic dinner or a group gathering.

2. Levissi Garden Restaurant

If you’re looking for a peaceful garden setting, Levissi Garden Restaurant is the perfect spot.

The restaurant’s lush greenery, fountains, and stunning views create an idyllic atmosphere for a relaxing meal. The menu features Turkish classics such as mezze platters, kebabs, and baklava.

Orthodox Churches

Kayakoy is also home to several well-preserved Orthodox churches that date back to the 18th century.

The churches were built by the Greek Orthodox population that used to live in the village before they were forced to leave during the population exchange between Turkey and Greece in 1923. Here are some of the most notable churches to visit:

1. Church of St. Nicholas

The Church of St. Nicholas is the largest and most famous church in Kayakoy.

Church of St. Nicholas at Kayakoy

The church features stunning frescoes and mosaics, and its bell tower offers panoramic views of the village. The church also hosts concerts and cultural events throughout the year.

2. Church of the Virgin Mary

The Church of the Virgin Mary is another must-visit attraction in Kayakoy. The church’s peaceful courtyard and intricate carvings make it a serene and spiritual spot. Visitors can light candles and say prayers at the church’s altar.

Hiking Near Kayakoy

Kayakoy is surrounded by stunning natural landscapes that are perfect for hiking enthusiasts.

The village’s proximity to the Lycian Way, a famous hiking trail that stretches from Fethiye to Antalya, makes it an ideal starting point for hikers. Here are some of the best hiking trails near Kayakoy:

1. Afkule Monastery Trail

The Afkule Monastery Trail is a scenic hiking trail that takes you through lush forests and ancient ruins.

The trail leads to a Byzantine-era monastery that offers breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.

2. Kabak Valley Trail

The Kabak Valley Trail is a challenging yet rewarding hike that takes you through rocky terrain and steep cliffs.

Kabak Valley Trail

The trail leads to a secluded beach with crystal-clear waters, making it an ideal spot for a refreshing swim after the hike.

3. Trail from Kayakoy to Oludeniz

The trail from Kayakoy to Oludeniz is an enchanting journey that takes hikers through the remnants of a rich historical past and the breathtaking beauty of the Turkish coastline.

This 5-kilometer (3-mile) trek weaves its way through the hauntingly beautiful ghost town of Kayakoy, a place where abandoned stone houses and crumbling churches stand as a testament to a time long gone.

Trail from Kayakoy to Oludeniz

As hikers make their way through lush pine forests and fragrant olive groves, they are greeted by the stunning panorama of the Turquoise Coast, with its pristine beaches and azure waters.

The trail culminates at the world-famous Oludeniz Beach, a true paradise on Earth, where the serene blue lagoon beckons visitors to take a refreshing dip after their invigorating hike.

The Kayakoy to Oludeniz trail is an unforgettable experience that combines the allure of history and the magnificence of nature, leaving hikers with memories to last a lifetime.

Bus schedule from Fethiye to Kayakoy

There is a possibility to travel from Fethiye to Kayakoy by bus, as per the provided schedule.

Make sure to check the bus timings and plan your trip accordingly to ensure a convenient and hassle-free journey between these two locations.

Departure from the Fethiye
Weekdays Weekends
06:45 07:20
07:20 08:00
08:00 09:00
09:00 10:00
09:30 11:15
10:00 12:00
11:15 13:00
12:00 14:15
13:00 15:00
13:30 16:15
14:15 17:00
15:00 18:00
16:15 19:00
Departure from the Kayaköy
Weekdays Weekends
07:15 08:00
08:00 09:00
09:00 10:00
10:00 11:00
10:30 12:00
11:00 13:00
12:00 14:00
13:00 15:00
14:00 16:00
14:30 17:00
15:00 18:00
16:00 19:00
17:00 20:00


Kayakoy is a unique and fascinating place to visit in Fethiye.

The village’s haunting beauty and rich history make it a must-see destination for anyone interested in the history of the Ottoman Empire and the region’s Greek past.

Whether you’re interested in history, architecture, or just exploring new places, Kayakoy is a destination that should not be missed.

Loader image

Kayaköy, also known as Karmylassos or Levissi, is an abandoned village located in southwestern Turkey. It was primarily abandoned due to the population exchange between Greece and Turkey, which took place in 1923 following the Treaty of Lausanne.

Related Posts