Side has a beautiful beachfront, with sandy beaches and lying on either side of the peninsula, they stretch as far as the eye can see. Although these beaches are connected by a short walk across the back of the old town they are unique.
On the West Side of Antalya lie the larger hotels of this resort town. Although no part of the beach is privately owned, each hotel has ‘claimed' its own section and unless you are resident of that particular hotel it's very likely that you will not be permitted to use the facilities of that part of the beach. Smaller enclaves of sun beds are scattered along the beach and for a nominal daily fee, the sun beds and parasols can be rented. The beach front however is open to all tourists and is very popular for early morning walkers and joggers. Even late in the evening this beach appears busy with people walking back from the Side town-center to their respective hotels located on the beach. For families this beach is the best choice as the sea is usually calm, clear, shallow, and safe.
The beach on the eastern side of the peninsula goes beyond the resort town of Alanya. This beach is slightly more difficult to reach and therefore less busy than the West beach. It can be reached either by walking from the old town following the coastline, a picturesque walk that takes you through many ruins on your way, or by taking the ‘otogar' (bus). This is a good idea in the morning before its gets too hot, but not such a good one after about 11:00! Alternatively, a taxi will take you directly to the sea front.
Keep in mind that the further you go away from the town centre, the less people you will find on the beach. A new beach service started last year around Side, with morning pickups at various restaurants and hotels, and drop-offs at certain beach bars. It is expected that you use their restaurant as a base for the day, and then at the end of the day you are dropped back at your pick-up point, free of charge.
There are no hotels on this beach and it is therefore much more natural and pristine than the west beach. Backed by sand dunes, there is nothing to spoil the skyline behind the beach except for the odd view of an ancient monument or a Roman wall. Facilities on the beach are quite basic, most snack bars and restaurants are family owned and have a very relaxed feel. Be prepared to pay for hire of sun beds and umbrellas. Be aware that the seabed on this beach drops quite dramatically about 3 meters out and the breaking waves can be quite rough.
You will find many water sports centres on both beaches, offering a good selection of activities, including para-gliding, water skiing, jet skis, banana boats and rings.
You will soon find Side's beaches and surroundings very pleasant and relaxing. However, take care of yourselves; use of sunscreens and high factor sun creams, especially for children is a must. During the summer months the "poyraz" can hit Side. This is a warm wind off the Sahara and feels like a hot air blower, and can result in sunburns. We urge you to be especially careful if you are here during these times and protect yourselves it with sun block and limit the exposure to sun.