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3 January 2018 / Lifestyle

Best Places to Live in Turkey for Expats: Retire to the Sun

When considering the best places to live in Turkey, we should look at many factors. There are many places, from natural beauties to major cities and popular tourist destinations. Some offer rich history, others offer beautiful beaches, and some, like Ankara, the capital city, are where the working expats head to further their careers. Many places to live in Turkey offer expats an attractive lifestyle, regardless of their background.

An overhaul of lifestyle trends in the last 15 years means the country matches any developed country regarding infrastructure, liveability, low crime, affordability, and utilities, and the bonus is the low cost of living. Indeed, some of the best places are home to sizeable communities of foreigners who want to live with safety, English speakers, low prices, ideal weather, and beautiful scenery.

Retiring expats generally stick to Aegean and Mediterranean places and live in residential complexes. At the same time, overseas workers gravitate to large cities. Digital nomads head everywhere there is good internet! So, let's look at towns, villages and cities worth considering if you are undecided about where to live.

12 of the Best Places to Live in Turkey


1: Sandy Beaches in the Fethiye Region

Many retirees say Fethiye is the best place to live. Enjoying a different climate zone to the Aegean coast, winters in Mediterranean Fethiye are distinctly mild. The biggest attraction by far is its reputation as a stunningly beautiful place and lifestyle preferences. Global publications give front-page coverage to its scenic landscapes, including the Blue Lagoon in Oludeniz, which is Turkey's most photographed beach.

Otherwise, Butterfly Valley, a rural community within the Green Canyon, attracts travellers and avid snorkelers. At the same time, Kayakoy Ghost Village earned international fame for its crumbling houses scattered over the hillside. Indeed, everyone adores Fethiye, and with budget and luxury homes for sale real estate projects, it is also a buyers' market. If the town's centre's hustle and bustle are too much but you adore the region's scenery, look at smaller surrounding coastal resorts like waterfront Calis Beach, Oludeniz, Hisaronu, and Ovacik.


2: High-End Lifestyle in Yalikavak in Aegean Turkey

For years, Yalikavak relied on tourism, then became an expat destination, and when the marina was built, burst onto the luxury hotel and property scene of Turkey. With large expat populations, the eyes of investors are also drawn to the luxury homes that offer aesthetic charm. With attractive neighbourhoods, expats with families will enjoy the low crime rates and laid-back, family-friendly ambience.

Don't just think about modern living, though, because Turkish culture can be found in the old town and harbour district. Language barriers don't exist because many locals are English speakers, and for more natural landscapes, head inland or along the coast. The vibrant atmosphere efficiently promotes Yalikavak, and although things quiet down in winter, expats love the town for leisurely lifestyle factors.


3: Bodrum City Center - Socially Unconventional

Suppose the lifestyle preferences of Yalikavak is too much. In that case, the Bodrum Peninsula on which the town sits includes other areas to live, including Bodrum, one of Turkey's most beautiful cities. As a favourite destination for artists, celebrities, musicians, and anyone looking to find themselves, community vibes revolve around life is what you make it. This modern city is the ideal destination to combine the traditions of old with the trends of current days.

Bodrum is one of Turkey's sailing hubs for an active lifestyle, and there are outdoor places like the main town beach and Bodrum castle. For affordable prices, duck down the back streets to where the locals go or head to the marina for upmarket dining and socialising. Coastal towns don't get any better than Bodrum for relaxed paces of life that conform to the pursuit of leisure and pleasure.


4: Places in Istanbul City Center: The Heart of Turkey

Rather than being a retirement location, many working foreigners base themselves in Istanbul, Turkey's largest city, because of job opportunities and digital nomads head here first. Naturally, as a hub of tourism, finance, good schools, business, economy, industry, and a significant place to invest in, Istanbul is to Turkey, London is to the UK, and Paris is to France. The city offers the best education facilities and an impressive transport network to other places and countries around the globe.

Of course, as a city, residents face higher costs of living. Still, current trends see people settling in cheaper outskirt neighbourhoods that are just a short drive away from central amenities. Although the Asian side offers much, the desired areas are mainly European. They provide quicker and easier access to everything, including the new ultramodern airport. Up-and-coming neighbourhoods worth looking at, primarily to raise families, are around the Basin Express Road, including Bagiclar, Kucukcekmece and Avcilar.


5: Live in Antalya Coastal City

At the other end of the western Mediterranean region and sitting within the area of the same name is Antalya city centre, one Turkish city that stands out for its beautiful atmosphere. The distinctively subtle ambience of living in big cities entices many nationalities as the best place to retire. Lara and Konyaalti beaches are the focus during summer.

Unlike places on the Aegean coast, Antalya city centre is open for tourism all year round thanks to the sunshine and mild winters, so it is the place to head to for outdoor activities. The top-notch transport network and D400 highway running along the coastline make this one of the most popular cities in Mediterranean Turkey. Aspendos ancient city is a major attraction here, but other fascinating ancient ruins are scattered through the coastline. Antalya is a safe city and a wise place for property investments.


6: Kalkan for Luxury Living in Turkey

Out of the wide range of places to retire, small-town living comes to the forefront in this southern destination on the Mediterranean coast. To live along the coast, with an upmarket lifestyle, look at Kalkan on the Mediterranean. This small seaside town commands a reputation for elegance in abundance because of large, luxury villas offering breathtaking sea views, pristine beach clubs, and top-notch rooftop restaurants promoting the summer alfresco dining scene.

Kalkan does not receive as much attention as mainstream travel destinations, making the town exclusive. Small foreign communities contribute with time towards local charities, and clubs arrange meet-ups for those who want to mingle with other foreigners. Kalkan's prominence on the Turkish Riviera makes the town an attractive sailing hub.


7: Didim for Attractive Property Prices

For budget buyers who want low costs but are unsure where to retire, the small town of Didim is a cheap place to live and has plenty of property investment options. Despite its reputation as a "Little Britain," specific suburbs keep their traditional Turkish ambience, and several beaches are within walkable distance. Thanks to its ideal combination of Turkish and British vibes, Didim is perfect for first-time British expats and expats with families.

With affordable costs and laid-back atmospheres, this is popular for hot summers and mild climates in winter. Water sports and tourist hotspots like the Temple of Apollo and the historical cities of Miletus and Priene regions are nearby. This destination for retirees sees beautiful beach sunsets that win favour, and real estate prices attract people's attention. There are several foreign languages spoken, but most locals also speak English.


8: Izmir City Centre in the Aegean Region of Turkey

For bustling cities, Turkey's third largest city will quickly satisfy. As well as the central district, the land within the province stretches out to coastal resorts like Alacati, which often attract curious travellers with the beachy lifestyle. Izmir's cosmopolitan vibe shines through despite being one of Turkey's larger cities, and the city is famous for expat families entering the job market who want a house for sale.

This attractive destination offers sunny weather, and the housing market has abundant opportunities. Izmir doesn't match Istanbul, which is the capital of tourism. Still, house buyers will find blended culture and modern living, an excellent culinary scene, and reasonable living costs. Likewise, foreign languages are widely spoken in Izmir, and the beautiful landscapes and stunning beaches are ideal to explore.


9: Bursa for Cultural Heritage and Good Real Estate Prices

If the sun, sea and sand lifestyle doesn't interest you, check out Bursa, home to historical sites and the famous mountain of Uludag. The real estate market, including apartments and villas, is exceptionally well priced for costs, and the city is famous in Turkey for its culture. As Turkey's fourth-largest city, the ambience is completely different from the coastal regions, and residents will find more opportunities to immerse themselves in the Turkish language.

The one downside is the geographical location means lower temperatures, but in cold winters, go skiing on Uludag mountain. The nickname Green Bursa lends clues to the status of having various green spaces, and city life can be pretty enjoyable with blended history, beautiful nature, and decent apartments.


10: Alanya for the Mediterranean Climate and Stunning Beaches

For affordable city vibes and stunning beaches, the vibrant atmosphere of Alanya is ideal, especially for winter living, as there is mild weather, given the strategic location at the end of the Mediterranean and turquoise coast. Summer months see the coastal charm coming alive as foreign tourists explore the historical heritage around the Red Tower and harbour area or stay in exclusive resorts designed to offer the ultimate luxury.

For property, residential complexes are popular, and districts are family-friendly areas, and real estate projects have also provided the ultimate modern living in recent years. Although Alanya is two hours from Antalya airport, Gazipasa airport, with limited flight schedules, is nearby. Ultimately, Alanya accommodates all lifestyle preferences, both budget and luxury, to help you find your perfect home.


11: Belek for a Real Estate Investment and Charm

Belek earns fame as the golfing capital of Turkey, yet offers much more than that. Having avoided inflated prices that other high-profile prices charge, affordable, all-inclusive hotels offering spa services win huge fans. Still, for expats, the lure is living in a delightful coastal resort year-round. There are plenty of historical landmarks and places of natural beauty in surrounding areas.

For all creature comforts, Belek offers everything on your doorstep. Belek is a favourite destination with various lifestyle choices and attractive property prices. Charming beaches in the centre and surrounding coastline are perfect for morning walks, and at evenings during summer, friendly atmospheres descend as everyone enjoys al fresco dining. Property buyers also have various investment options, from apartments to villas.


12: Dalyan for Beautiful Atmospheres and Cultural Heritage

History enthusiasts will love living in Dalyan thanks to the picturesque Lycian tombs overlooking the river and the aesthetic charm. Indeed, Dalyan offers the best of both worlds because residents live beside a river and are also near the famous Iztuzu beach. Tour operators bring tourists to the historic Kaunos site and the famous mud baths. Still, for residents, this is ideal for the vibes of living with nature rather than a bustling metropolis. Dalyan doesn't offer high-end lifestyles, but competitive property prices are a great lure. Sitting near Koycegiz, Dalyan portrays charming nature, and beautiful neighbourhoods led the way to great community atmospheres. The surrounding natural landscapes are also ideal.

Find a House for Sale in Turkey

Foreign house sales do well in Turkey, especially with buyers who want to reside all year round. If you are looking at the best places to live and buy property in Turkey, let us introduce our services. With ample opportunities, we can help you find the home of your dreams in places with good infrastructure networks and the beauty of nature. From central districts, with housing for families to lesser-known destinations promoting expat lifestyle factors on lower living costs. From areas with conservative values to places that count as the safest cities. Start your search of our portfolio of apartments, villas and land, and use the contact details to find out more or arrange viewings.

Also, About Living in Turkey

Tips for Foreigners: This article on what to know about living in Turkey includes tips for everyone, from expat families to couples to those moving here alone. From language barriers to banking and costs, residential complexes, and lifestyle choices, you will find friendly atmospheres wherever you go. Still, you will also need tips and advice on settling in and what to watch out for. Turkey's charming beaches and beautiful atmosphere mean everyone can enjoy living abroad, regardless of which place they go to in Turkey.

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