Letoon lies less than 10 km away from the south of Xanthos on a fertile plain. Xanthos and Letoon are often seen as a "double-site", since the two were closely linked because Letoon was administered by Xanthos. Xanthos-Letoon is one of the most remarkable archaeological sites in Turkey. For this reason, it has been registered in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list. Letoon has been under excavation since the 1950's and since 1962 by the French Archaeological Mission, in conjunction with the excavations being carried out at Xanthos. Excavation goes on today - the team has accomplished an excellent work and in recent years, and begun to restore the Temple of Leto.
Letoon is a romantic site and many of the monuments arise from standing water which provides lush vegetation. Terrapins and frogs are usually seen in the area. Unfortunately though, the high water table hinders excavation.
To reach Letoon, you turn west one km beyond the road from Kinik to Fethiye and continue 5 kilometers straight. It's not far from Patara and a day trip from Kalkan, Kaş or Fethiye to Letoon or Xanthos could easily be combined with a trip to the beach and/or ruins there.
With a width of 11 miles, unspoilt Patara Beach is Turkey’s longest beach. Even more importantly, Patara has escaped the development that mars many lesser beaches around the Mediterranean thanks to the ruins of the once mighty ancient city from which the beach gets its name, and the resident Loggerhead turtles, a protected species which has been laying its eggs here for the past 40 million years.
From the south-east end of the beach, you can admire the distant towering limestone peaks of Lycia. At their feet sprawls a fertile plain, where farmers grow tomatoes, sweet peppers, aubergines and other Mediterranean staples. Between this cultivated land and the serried ranks of umbrella pine-fringed dunes nuzzling the beach, a patchwork of limpid lagoons forms a haven for wildlife. You may catch the croaks of frogs or the trills of wading birds above the crash of breaking waves. To the right, a mountain ridge plunging into the turquoise sea marks the furthest extent of the beach. Gaze west, across low waves curling gently across the vast expanse of sandy shallows that make this beach so attractive to families, to the Greek island of Rhodes, 50 miles offshore. With the exception of the small café, there is nothing man-made in sight.
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