Kalkan (Greek: Kalamaki) is a town on the Turkish Mediterranean coast, which averages 300 days of sunshine a year. The area includes many historical sites and many fine beaches. The word Kalkan is Turkish for ‘shield’. Kalkan is an old fishing town, and the only safe harbor between Kas and Fethiye; it is famous for its white-washed houses, descending to the sea, and its brightly colored bougainvilleas. Until the early 1920s the majority of its inhabitants were Greeks. They had to leave the town in 1923 because of the Exchange of populations between Greece and Turkey after the Greco-Turkish War. They emigrated mainly to Attica, where they founded the new town of Kalamaki.
With much of the surrounding land still undeveloped and with many nearby remains of ancient civilizations, Kalkan is the ideal resort for those who want calm and relaxation, enjoying the natural beauty of the cleanest seashores and of rough mountains covered with pine forests, and also for those who want to explore the remains of the ancient Lycian cities in the neighborhood. Lycia, “The Land of Light”, which is the first known federation in history, included the many city-states between modern-day Fethiye and Antalya, and its capital was Xanthos (Arna in Lycian language), which is Kinik today, 17 km (11 mi) from Kalkan. Kalkan was an important harbour town until the 1970s as the only seaport for the environs. It declined after construction of Fethiye road but revived after the emergence of the tourism industry in the region. Although part of the Antalya province administratively, Kalkan is connected more closely to Fethiye economically and for transportation. British newspaper The Independent listed Kalkan among the best tourist destinations for 2007. The paper recommended Kalkan especially for those seeking a romantic vacation and who do not want to travel far from their home country in Europe, and defined the town as a destination of choice.