Old Datça (Eski Datça) Travel Guide

There’s no doubt that Türkiye has plenty of things to see and do — from exploring the streets of Istanbul to climbing the plateaus of the Black Sea region, discovering mosaics in Gaziantep, floating away on a hot air balloon in Cappadocia, and finding the best taverna in Ayvalık — that it would take a lifetime to see them all (believe us, that’s what we’re trying to do!) 

Yet, after all these exhilarating adventures, sometimes all you crave is a place to relax and rejuvenate… so you travel to Old Datça. 🙂 

Old Datça (also known as Eski Datça in Turkish — we use both interchangeably) is a small village just 3 km (1.8 mi) from Datça. It was one of the first settlements in the Datça peninsula and traces its history to the 11th century BC. 

However, what really draws visitors to Old Datça is its enchanting atmosphere. In a few words, Old Datça is winding cobblestone streets, beautifully-restored stone houses framed by bougainvillea flowers, and cute little boutique shops and hotels.

With that being said, it’s no surprise that Old Datça is one of the most photogenic places in Turkey — which is why, instead of our traditional travel guide format, we’ve made this into a ‘photo guide’! 

Of course, we’ll include our usual information (such as where to stay in Old Datça, what to see, where to eat, and more), but expect a lot more photos than usual. 🙂 

How to get to Old Datça

Since Old Datça is fairly close to Datça town center (or as we like to joke, New Datça 😄), you can easily get there in a number of ways: 

Taxi — There are a handful of taxis in the center of Datça that you can use to travel to Old Datça. We paid 180 TL for a one-way trip in May 2024, and the driver used his taximeter. Be sure to ask around, since some drivers quoted us up to 200 TL. 

Bus — Muğla Province (the province where Datça is located) has an excellent public transportation network.​​ Take the 9-1 bus line (Datça – Eski Datça Reşadiye) and get off at the ‘Eski̇ Datça Muhtarlığı’ stop. The price is 25 TL per person and you can pay with a credit card (just tap your card at the contactless terminal near the doors). Click here for the timetables and stops →

What to do in Old Datça

While most cities have a typical list of must-see tourist attractions — a statue here, a building there, maybe a museum or two — Old Datça’s appeal is that it has none of that. Seriously!

Instead of ticking off a to-see list, you get to choose your own adventures in Old Datça. Which charming cobblestone streets will you wander? What cute little cafe will become your favorite? 

And perhaps most important, Which memory of Eski Datça will linger in your heart long after you’ve left?

Along the way, be sure to keep your eyes open and look up once in a while — you might run into a new friend or two (like this cute little local!) 

… Or perhaps you’ll notice an interesting detail, like this hidden street sign? 

Of course, no Eski Datça guide is complete without mentioning Can Yücel, a famous Turkish poet who spent the last few years of his life in this village. Yücel’s poems often feature nature and emotions, and it’s no surprise that he was deeply inspired by Datça.

The streets of Old Datça are decorated with wonderful textures — rough-hewn stone houses, paper-like bougainvillea flowers, the smooth curves of nazar beads hanging above cafes…

The streets of Old Datça are filled with delightful smells — the delicate fragrance of jasmine flowers, the sweet aroma of almond trees in bloom, the savory scents of spices mingling on freshly-cooked local dishes…

The streets of Old Datça are a medley of sounds — the chatter of friends, the rustling of flowers in the wind, the smooth and rhythmic melodies coming from cafes…  

The streets of Old Datça are filled with an atmosphere of tranquility and magic!

(We’re no Can Yűcel, but now we can cross off ‘write a poem on this blog’ off our to-do list ;))

Speaking of this blog… This post wouldn’t be complete without our traditional list of good ol’ travel tips. 

So let’s dive into a few things you should know before you visit Old Datça. 🙂 

🧿 It’s best to get to Old Datça early in the morning — People (and tour busses) start to arrive around noon. If you want to enjoy the peaceful atmosphere (and fewer people in your photos :)), we recommend arriving around 10 am. 

🧿 You can technically see all of Old Datça in 30 minutes ~ 1 hour (it’s really that small). But like we said in our Datça Travel Guide, “If you are in a hurry, what are you doing in Datça?” 

🧿 Despite its small size, Old Datça has plenty of cafes and restaurants. They have a very boutique vibe, with many housed in beautifully-restored stone buildings.

🧿 If you loved Old Datça so much, you can even stay overnight! This is an excellent option if you want to have a relaxing vacation and beat the crowds in the morning and evening. Scroll down to our ‘Where to Stay in Old Datça’ for some of our favorite places.

After a while of exploring these magical streets, you’ve most likely worked up an appetite. 

Thankfully, Old Datça’s restaurants and cafes are no less beautiful than the village itself! 

In fact, it might be hard to choose where to eat, as each place vies for your attention. No matter what you choose, you’ll love it. 🙂 

And if you don’t have a place in mind yet, no worries — just scroll down a bit to the next section! 

Where to Eat in Old Datça

Noema Coffee (photo above) — A relaxing ambiance with hints of blue and white — it reminded us of Bali, Tulum, or Santorini. 🙂 There are plenty of indoor and outdoor seats (plus cute cats chilling on the sofas). Location →

Tonka Patisserie — Did you know that one of the best pastry chefs in Turkey has her own patisserie? Chef Feray Aydoğdu was the first chef to represent Turkey in the Coupe du Monde la Pâtisserie and brought her world-famous sweets to Old Datça (she also recently opened up a second location in Istanbul’s Fairmont Hotel!). Location →

Nil Cafe Restaurant — Owned by a sweet lady named Nil (hence the name), this family-run restaurant is famous for their third-wave coffee and desserts. Of course, they also have regular food as well. 🙂 Location →

Pizza Trio — One of the most legendary restaurants in Old Datça is none other than Pizza Trio. The prices are on the more expensive size, but the taste is fantastic. Location →

Eski Ev Cafe & Restaurant — A sweet restaurant with plenty of space and a huge menu — they have everything from breakfast to pasta, appetizers, salads, fish, and even vegetarian dishes! If you can’t decide what to eat, you’ll find something here. 🙂  Location →

Bon Chocolate — A cute hipster cafe that serves ice cream, sweets, and drinks. They’re especially famous for their honey almond ice cream. Location →

Prunus Cafe — What else can we say other than this cute place an explosion of color? 🙂 The cafe makes dishes with local Datça ingredients like almond pudding, almond cookies, almond ice latte… Location →

Where to Stay in Old Datça 

Ultava Houses —  Who needs a ticket to Bali when you can stay in this absolutely gorgeous hotel? The boho-meets-luxury boutique hotel is located near Can Yücel’s house and was previously a typical Datça stone house (in fact, it was the home of British politician Michael Cashman!). 

There are only four suites in the hotel — Sandal, Juniper, Almond, and Bay — which were named after trees. Even better, the latter three have their own outdoor jacuzzi pools! (photo above)

If you’re looking to relax in stylish and peaceful luxury, this is definitely the place. 🙂 

Zeyt Inn Hotel — True to its name (zeytin means olive in Turkish), this cute hotel is surrounded by olive trees and has a quintessential Old Datça feel. The building itself is a recently-built stone house (but still very Datça-eque!) and features a variety of rooms, including Double, Triple, and Quadruple rooms. 

There is also an outdoor swimming pool, a lovely breakfast made with local ingredients, and an on-site restaurant.

Dilek Hanım Konağı Datça — An absolute gem of a hotel, this konağı (guesthouse) is run by sweet miss Dilek and her family — from the authentic details to the hospitality, it feels as if you’re staying at your family’s house! 

Eski Datça Otel — Another authentic Old Datça hotel, Eski Datça has a friendly host, spacious and clean rooms, and cute accents that really emphasize the quaint atmosphere.  

Kairos Valley Health & Nature Resort — Looking to leave it all and relax in peace? Definitely book a room at Kairos Valley! Located just a few minutes from Old Datça, this hotel complex has everything you need (and more!), including an outdoor pool, gym, spa, a yoga area, on-site restaurants, and even peaceful tree orchards where you can stroll around. There’s even rumors that they’ll even build a vineyard. 😉 

And the rooms, ah, the rooms! There are three types to choose from (Deluxe Double/Twin, Superior Double/Twin, and Chalet), and each has a peaceful natural wood design, plenty of space, and absolute cleanliness. The Chalets are especially fantastic, as you get an entire treehouse-style house with panoramic views of the valley below!

La Petra Datca — A cute family-run hotel located just a 2-minute walk from Old Datça’s center. Besides the spacious rooms, there’s also a large outdoor pool and parking lot. 

Kocaev Mehmet Ali Ağa Konağı — If you want to feel Datça’s history, there’s no better place to do so than at this fantastic mansion. The building’s history dates back to the 1800s and was originally built for Ali Ağa, the mayor of Rhodes, and afterwards used as a tobacco warehouse, school, and even a wedding venue. 

The house was restored in the early 2000s and still retains much of its original beauty. There are only 18 rooms, each of which have stunning wood details, restored mosaics, and Ottoman-style fireplaces, it really does feel like you’re staying in a “museum hotel”!

Merhaba and welcome to Let’s Travel to Türkiye!

This website was created by locals to help travelers plan their trip to Turkey (Türkiye) from start to finish. You’ll find everything you need, from city guides to road trip itineraries, resources on transportation and accommodations, and so much more.

Iyi yolculuklar (happy travels)!