The island of Kekova offers a fun way to combine an exploration of ancient Lycian ruins with swimming in turquoise waters and a barbecue on the beach. Kekova is a submerged port dating back to the 5th century BC, when Lycia was an important kingdom in this region. The Lycian capital was Xanthos, an hour west of Kekova, where King Sarpedon, who fought in the Trojan Wars, originally came from. During you blue cruise or your sailing holiday along the Turkish coast you will discover Kekova: a spot that is like heaven on earth. One first encounters the Sicak Peninsula at the end of which are two islands: Toprakada and Karaada. Kekova island stretches out from here and it is because of this island that the whole area is called Kekova. Passing among the islands and arriving at Kekova, the safest anchorage is Üçagiz, which is a good, all-round harbour. Other places may be used for short periods during visits. At Kekova, history and nature have merged and become inseparable. Such ancient cities are Aperlai, Kekova, Simena, and Theimussa are to be found in the vicinity. This is why Kekova is not to be missed destination during you sailing holiday in Turkey or your amazing Blue Cruise along the Turkish coats. Aperlai is located on the Sicak Peninsula, near the Sicak jetty. A Lycian city, Aperlai's history is known from coins bearing its name that have been discovered and goes back to the 4th or 5th centuries BC Aperlai was the head of the Lycian Confederacy, of which Simena and Apollonia were also members.
The city walls begin at the seashore and are fortified with towers at intervals. These walls, with their rectangular and polygonal construction, are from Roman times: Other remains at Aperlai are all from the Byzantine and later periods. From inscriptions that have been found, we know that the history of the ancient city of Simena goes back to the 4th century BC If we go ashore via the jetty next to the sarcophagus on the seashore and climb the hill behind the houses, we reach the castle of Simena. This castle was used during the Middle Ages. In the medieval walls of the inner keep are a few blocks of all that remains of an ancient temple. Inside the castle is a small natural theatre carved into the rock. On the shore are the ruins of public baths whose inscription is still legible and reads "A gift to the emperor Titus made by the people and council of Aperlai as well as by the other cities of the confederation." Looking from the castle towards Üçagiz it becomes clear how beautiful and safe a natural harbour this really is. Simena (or Kaleköy, its present day name) is only a temporary shelter however. The actual shelter for yachts is Theimussa (Üçagiz), a landlocked bay surrounded by green hills. The ruins of the ancient city of Theimussa are located here. Very little is known about the history of the city however. One inscription indicates that its history goes back to the 4'th century BC One sees mostly the ruins of a necropolis here and no city walls or other major structures have been encountered.