A village located near Fethiye, in southwestern Turkiye, with a rich history, stunning ruins, and beautiful flora and fauna.
Kayakoy was originally settled by Greeks in the late 18th century, and the village was known as Levissi. During the early 20th century, the Greeks and the Turks had conflicts, and the Greeks were forced to leave the village. The village was abandoned in the 1920s, and it is now known as the Ghost Village.
Houses and Ruins:
The kayakoy houses were made of stone and had two stories. The lower floor was used as a stable or storage area, while the upper floor was used as living quarters. The houses were typically built around a central courtyard. The ruins of Kayakoy include over 500 abandoned houses, two Greek Orthodox churches, and a school.
The Greeks in Kayakoy lived in stone houses and made their living from agriculture, animal husbandry, and trade. They had a vibrant community with their own schools, churches, and businesses.
Leaving for Greece:
The Greeks living in these stone houses were forced to leave the village during the population exchange between Turkey and Greece in the 1920s. They were relocated to Greece, and the village was left abandoned.
Fauna and Flora:
The Village is surrounded by pine forests and has a variety of flora and fauna, including wildflowers, herbs, and birds. The area is home to various species of wildlife, such as tortoises, lizards, and snakes.
Restaurants and Bars:
There are several restaurants and bars in Kayakoy that offer traditional Turkish cuisine, as well as international dishes.
Churches and Schools:
Kayakoy Ghost Village has two Greek Orthodox churches that are now in ruins. The largest church, known as the Church of the Virgin Mary, was built in 1888 and is the most impressive of the ruins. The school was also abandoned and is now in ruins. It was built in the early 20th century and served as a primary school for the children of the village.
Distance and Transportation:
Kayakoy is located about 8 km from Fethiye town, and it takes about 20 minutes to drive there. The easiest way to get to Kayakoy is by car or taxi.
There are camel rides available in Kayakoy that take visitors through the beautiful countryside and ruins.
Tourism and Tickets:
The Ghost Village is a popular tourist destination, and visitors can purchase tickets to enter the ruins and churches.
There are several tombs located near Kayakoy, including the Tomb of Amyntas, which dates back to the 4th century BC.
What to Do as a Tourist:
As a tourist, there are several things to do in Kayakoy. Visitors can explore the ruins and churches, go on a camel ride, hike through the pine forests, and enjoy traditional Turkish cuisine at one of the restaurants.
Today, there are a few small villages located near the ruins , and the people who live in these villages make their living from agriculture, animal husbandry, and tourism. Many of the locals are involved in the tourism industry, working as tour guides, restaurant owners, or selling handmade crafts.
The villages in the area have a traditional Turkish way of life, and many of the residents still maintain the customs and traditions of their ancestors. The people are friendly and hospitable, welcoming visitors to their villages and offering them a glimpse into their way of life.
The villagers also take pride in preserving the history and cultural heritage of Kayakoy. They have formed cultural and historical associations that work to maintain the ruins and promote the history of the village. The associations organise cultural events and festivals to showcase the traditional way of life of the Greeks who once lived in Kayakoy.
Overall, the current villages in Kayakoy continue to maintain a close connection to their history and culture, while also adapting to modern times and the demands of tourism.