The Kaş Guide
If you asked Turks what they thought the prettiest place in Turkey was, Kaş would likely be one of the top three answers.
Located at one of Turkey's southernmost points along the famed golden coast, Kaş is a scenic, bohemian district of Antalya.
Kaş is a town built on a hillside that runs into the Mediterranean. Perhaps this challenging landscape has helped it successfully avoid an exodus of mass tourism, unlike Bodrum or Marmaris, making it one of Turkey's few undiscovered gems.
Is Kaş the right fit for you? Let's see.
Retiring in Kaş
Although Kaş is a beautiful pick for a sunny holiday, it has not been spoilt by crowds. It remains relatively secluded, making it an excellent destination for a more introverted and laid-back retirement or a quiet break from city life for a few years.
It is a small town with less than 60,000 residents, where more cats than people roam the streets during the off-season.
Kaş has a very mild winter, perhaps the mildest in Turkey, and long hot summers. It has a small community of expats and is more popular with western expats, mainly the British.
The harbor at the bottom of the hill is where everything happens, and you can wine and dine by the sea with your friends and locals.
You can swim for at least nine months out of the year, which is all the more reasons why Kaş is great to retire in.
Lifestyle in Kaş
Bohemian, chill, and slow are the three adjectives you could use to describe the lifestyle in Kaş. Its people are super laid back, and you'll get to enjoy the minor things in life when you live in a small town like Kaş.
The town is small enough to know almost everyone in the winter, and the community is close-knit. However, being a picture-perfect little town doesn't mean that there is little to do; there are events in Patara, a gallery to visit in Kalkan, beaches to swim at, and so much more. The only caveat is that you will have to drive a bit to get to places.
There is an emphasis on organic and eco-friendly living, which will explain the abundance of natural products lining the windows of shops and the streets.
You can say there is practically no traffic, except for the usual crowdedness at the height of summer and cars' queue to head town to Kaputaş Beach.
Cost of Living in Kaş
You'll need to earn more than the national minimum wage (around $380) to get by in Kaş. If you were to compare the town to Alanya in terms of prices and variety for shopping, you would see that Alanya is slightly cheaper. The fundamental difference between the two is that to get to bigger shops in Kaş; you will have to travel far, which means putting more money aside for gas.
5 Things You'll Love about Kaş
- Au naturel
From sweet-smelling soaps to dozens of flavors of jams and fruits and vegetables in all the colors of the rainbow, Kaş offers locals an unbelievable amount of choice when it comes to organic products. Visit the weekly bazaars or the stalls set up on streets going up the hillside to pick the best grown by villagers.
- Swimmers’ paradise
With a coastline that stretches 70 kilometers, Kaş has countless beaches to cool off in; from the famed Kaputaş Beach to Limanağzı and Hidayet Bay, you can swim in ultramarine waters, surrounded by mountains.
- Blue voyage
Drop anchor in the Bay of Kekova to discover the Sunken City, and relax on a gulet with your friends and family. Explore the many bays of Kaş on a day trip. When in Kaş, all you have to do is hop on a sailboat for a genuinely dreamy vacation and to feel at home away from summer crowds.
- Ancient history
Kaş is home to historical remnants from many eras, the Lycian rock tombs, the ruins of Antiphellos, to the medieval Simena Castle in Kaleköy. You'll not only have the chance to walk among living history but also dive underwater to see the now-sunken treasures.
- Adventure sports
Sunken ships, shoals of fish, and coral reefs, scuba diving in Kaş (and the south of Turkey in general) will be an experience you'll forever cherish. If underwater sports irk you, you can soar in the skies and paraglide from the hills of Kaş to glance over the Old Town and gleaming sea.
5 Things I Wish I'd Known before Moving to Kaş
- A matter of location
Depending on the area you live in, i.e., on the outer skirts and more secluded areas or the central, busier areas, your experience of living in Kaş will essentially be very different. If you decided to settle further up the mountain, you need to make sure you have your car and be relatively self-sufficient if you do not want to head to the center every day. Though in summer, you might be thankful to be further away from the crowds.
- High rent
Perhaps not as high as the prices in Kalkan, but renting in Kaş is still not affordable by any means. Villa rentals and properties have seen prices skyrocket in recent years, with flats surpassing rates charged for luxury districts such as Moda and Cihangir in Istanbul.
- Rocky seas
Some of the beaches in Kaş border cliffs, which as cool as they look, mean that pebbles generally cover them, and the seas may be rocky. So be sure to bring some sea shoes with you.
- Forget about clubbing
The clubbing scene is pretty non-existent in Kaş. Although you may find bars and pubs, and restaurants are always full of people until the late hours of the night, the town is hardly buzzing. If you are looking for a good time surrounded by pulsating music, you are better off Bodrum.
- Far to everywhere
Considering that the nearest airport is 4 hours away in Dalaman or Antalya (center), you will need a car to get around. The town also has limited facilities regarding hospitals and schools; it is best reserved for holidays or retirement.
5 Nearby Towns to Visit
- Meis (Kastellorizo)