Lycian Tombs and Sunken Cities
Kas (pronounced Kash) is a small fishing village and tourist town located 170 kms west of Antalya. Built on a hill running down to the Mediterranean Sea, it has hot dry summers and mild winters which makes it ideal for growing fruit and vegetables. Although it is still a source of agriculture, tourism now provides its main income.
The Greek island of Kastelorizo or Meis in Turkish, is located just 6 kms offshore and can be easily be visited by ferry.
Although the peninsula has been occupied since the stone age, it appears that Kas was founded by the Lycians. It was a member of the Lycian League and the importance of the town is confirmed by the presence of one of the best examples of Lycian necropolis.
In ancient Greek times it was named Antiphilos and during Roman times it was famous for sponges and timber. After 395, Antiphilos became part of the Byzantine Empıre and in the middle ages it was a titular see. It suffered from Arabic incursions until like other towns it was annexed to Sultanate of Rum under the Seljuks and then later the Ottomans.
In 1923 following the war between Turkey and Greece, most of the Greek population left the town. Examples of abandoned Greek houses can still be seen here.
The tourism boom came during the 1990s and unfortunately this meant an explosion of apartment building and luxury hotels in scenic Cukurbag area west of the town which has somewhat spoiled it’s beauty. However Kas itself remains a pleasant small town with the Tauras Mountains as it’s backdrop.