10 Family Things to Do in Antalya

Fun Places in Antalya to Take Your Kids

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    Family holidays to Antalya are all about lazy days by the pool, action-packed fun at the theme parks and seeking awesome adventures in the great outdoors. With its year-round sunshine, award-winning beaches and world-class hotels, it’s no wonder that families return to this stunning resort on Turkey’s Mediterranean Coast time and time again.

    If you’re a first-timer to Antalya and you’re starting to plan the ultimate getaway, we’ll help you get the ball rolling. Here’s our pick of the best family things to do in Antalya, for little kids and big kids alike (we’re looking at you, dad!).

    1

    Antalya Aquarium

    The world’s biggest tunnel aquarium

    Not only does Antalya Aquarium feature the world’s biggest tunnel aquarium, but it’s also one of the largest aquarium complexes in the world, too. Inside, there are no fewer than 40 different themed sections. Wander through the 131-metre tunnel as you gaze in awe at sharks and other sea life, then brave the fascinating species that you’ll find in the Fear Trophy reptile house.

    The aquarium is conveniently located right next to Konyaaltı Beach, a fitting respite from the sun. There’s the Snow World and Ice Museum attached, where you can make snowballs out of real snow, plus an Oceanride XD Cinema where you can experience multi-dimensional movies.

    Τοποθεσία: Antalya Aquarium, Arapsuyu Mahallesi, Dumlupınar Blv. No:502, 07200 Konyaaltı/Antalya, Turkey

    Ανοιχτά: Daily from 9.30am to 11pm

    Τηλέφωνο: +90 (0)242 245 65 65

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    2

    Sandland

    The ultimate sand-sculpting festival

    For an experience that’s truly unique, take the whole family along for an unforgettable visit to Sandland, one of the leading sand sculpture events in the world. Sandland (or the Antalya Sand Sculpture Museum) sees specialist sand sculptors from all over the world gather to build the most magnificent, intricate and mind-blowingly creative sculptures, using only water and sand. And tonnes of it, for that matter.

    What takes the creators 3 weeks of intense labour, stands the test of time and will remain for visitors to enjoy for months to come. There’s a different theme each year, such as ‘Legends’ or ‘Empires’, so it can end up being just as educational as it is fun.

    Τοποθεσία: Sandland, Guzeloba Mahallesi Lara Caddesi Lara Birlik Halk Plajı, 07230 Muratpaşa/Antalya, Turkey

    Ανοιχτά: Daily from 9am to 7pm (open until 11pm from May–October)

    Τηλέφωνο: +90 (0)242 349 11 55

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    3

    Antalya Toy Museum

    Take a trip down memory lane

    Step back in time and see how children’s toys have changed over the centuries at the fascinating Antalya Toy Museum. It opened in 2011, but the museum already houses more than 1,500 antique toys, some of which you can hold for yourself. The toys on display date as far back as the 1800s, right up to more modern times, with plenty of familiar characters that your little ones will recognise.

    This isn’t an attraction just for the kids to enjoy. Grown-ups will love it just as much as it’ll take you on a trip down memory lane. How many of the toys will you remember from your childhood? Pop into the museum while exploring the Kaleiçi marina.

    Τοποθεσία: Antalya Toy Museum, Selçuk Mahallesi, Yat Limanı Sok No:112, 07000 Muratpaşa/Antalya, Turkey

    Ανοιχτά: Tuesday–Sunday from 9am to 6pm

    Τηλέφωνο: +90 (0)242 248 49 33

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    4

    Aqualand

    Non-stop fun in the sun

    No family holiday would be complete without a day out to an action-packed waterpark. So, head on over to Aqualand and experience all the thrills and spills, letting the kids cool off from the warm Turkish sun. There’s a huge range of attractions to enjoy, from crazy river rides to fun-filled racing slides. Perhaps you’re daring enough to plunge into the darkness on a pitch-black tube ride? Or go shooting towards the sky on a half-pipe waterslide?

    For those with smaller children, there are plenty of pools to splash around in and a jacuzzi bar for the parents to enjoy, too. Plus, once you’ve worked up an appetite, you can grab a bite to eat from one of the poolside restaurants or refreshments stands.

    Τοποθεσία: Antalya Aqualand Dolphinland, Meltem Mh., Dumlupınar Blv. Konyaaltı Koruluğu, 07030 Muratpaşa/Antalya, Turkey

    Ανοιχτά: May–October: daily from 10am to 5pm

    Τηλέφωνο: +90 (0)242 249 09 08

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    5

    Aktur Park

    A funfair for all the family

    Experience the fun of the fair at Antalya’s Aktur Park, a classic amusement park in the very heart of the city. The rides operate using a pre-paid card system, so once you arrive, load it up and away you go! There are a couple of high-adrenaline, twisting coasters and spinning rides that teenagers and adults will love, then plenty of smaller attractions for the whole family to enjoy, such as smaller coasters, bumper cars and the soaring Ferris wheel.

    The park is located just across the road from the huge 5M Migros shopping mall, connected by a footbridge, so you can tie both places into one visit. The park isn’t open during the day as it gets too hot, but it lights up and comes to life in the evenings.

    Τοποθεσία: Aktur Park, Pınarbaşı Mahallesi, 07070 Konyaaltı/Antalya, Turkey

    Ανοιχτά: Monday–Friday from 5pm to 12am, Saturday–Sunday from 3pm to 12am

    Τηλέφωνο: +90 (0)242 229 19 84

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    6

    Kursunlu Waterfalls

    An area of stunning natural beauty

    Let your kids’ imaginations run wild as you discover the stunning natural wonder that is Kursunlu Waterfalls. Located just a short drive from the centre of Antalya, these idyllic falls are like something out of a fantasy world and showcase the breathtaking beauty of Turkey’s varying landscapes.

    Follow the trails through lush pine forests and along flowing rivers until you emerge at the waterfall, cascading from 18 metres high into 7 connecting pools. Here, you can find a tranquil place to enjoy a picnic and spot tortoises, crabs and fish in the water. You can hire a car and make your own way to the falls and a number of companies run day trips there to save you the hassle.

    Τοποθεσία: Kursunlu Waterfall, Kursunlu Şelalesi, 07119 Aksu/Antalya, Turkey

    Ανοιχτά: Daily from 8am to 6.30pm

    Τηλέφωνο: +90 (0)242 433 22 18

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    7

    Lara Beach

    A family-friendly Blue Flag beach

    Located just to the east of Antalya is the bustling resort of Lara Beach, with its hugely popular beach that goes by the same name. Stretching along the coast for an impressive 12 km, the golden sands of Lara Beach provide the ideal setting to enjoy some quality time together on your family holiday.

    Those with bigger kids might want to check out the variety of water sports available to try, while the younger ones can build sandcastles in the soft sand or paddle in the crystalline waters. The award-winning beach boasts Blue Flag status, so parents can rest assured that their little ones can enjoy playing in a clean and safe environment, with all the essential amenities close by.

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    8

    Lycian Way

    Where kids can get a taste for adventure

    Famous for being one of the world’s greatest long-distance trails, the Lycian Way runs for 540 km along the coast, from Antalya to Ölü Deniz. Of course, we don’t expect you to take the kids – or even yourselves – the full distance, but you can certainly hire bikes for a few hours and enjoy an outdoor adventure together.

    More suited to families with older or particularly active children, you’ll need to pack plenty of water and sun cream before setting off to discover the magnificent scenery that the trail is known for. If you’re keen to experience the Lycian Way but you aren’t seasoned adventurers, there are plenty of mountain bike companies that offer guided tours along the coast.

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    9

    Dondurma Dukkani

    Fresh, natural and mouth-wateringly good ice cream

    Dondurma Dukkani is a chain of Antalya ice cream parlours serving mouth-watering treats to children and adults of all ages. We all know how much kids crave ice cream when they’re surrounded by sun, sea and sand. But surely they can’t have it every day? Perhaps you can make an exception to the rule on this holiday, as all their ice cream is made using only fresh, seasonal fruits, natural flavours and locally sourced milk. It helps that it’s super cheap, too.

    Don’t be put off if you see a queue forming out the door as the friendly staff are fast and efficient. Plus, queues can only be a sign of a great ice cream, right?

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    10

    Stay at one of the best family-friendly hotels

    Where family entertainment is at the forefront of everything

    For a truly unforgettable holiday for you and the kids, you should be sure to stay in one of Antalya’s fantastic family-friendly hotels. There’s so much to see and do around Antalya, but staying somewhere that caters so well for children when you’re not out and about can make all the difference to your overall enjoyment.

    There are hotels close to the beach, some featuring pools and waterparks, and some with kids’ clubs, mini-discos and childcare, too. Somewhere like the Land of Legends Kingdom Hotel, with its own on-site theme park, might be good for teenagers in need of non-stop entertainment. Those with younger kids might prefer beachfront hotels like Liberty Hotels Lara, with its on-site waterpark, or the luxurious Titanic Beach Lara Resort, where you can relax while the little ones are at the kids’ club.

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    Sadie Geoghegan-Dann | Συγγραφέας

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