Discovering Patara Beach -
a sleepy little village of whitewashed houses
, Patara was once one of the ancient Lycia's six major cities. In Greek times, The Oracle of Apollo was situated here, while St Paul and St Luke called by during their travels among the early Christian communities.
Testimony to Patara's past importance are the astonishing number of antiquities that litter the countryside,
especially near the road that leads from the village to one of the finest beaches on the entire Mediterranean.
Among this impressive but surprisingly neglected collection of ruins is the famous Roman triumphal arch from the first century AD, a Roman bath in a remarkable state of preservation, an amphitheatre
and distinctive Lycian tombs with their odd shaped tops.
Many of these priceless monuments are scattered in the fields where rows of women work patiently.