KAYAKOY The abandoned Ghost Town

KAYAKOY The abandoned Ghost Town
30 October 2020

This eerie but magnificent ruin was once a bustling town nestled against the Taurus Mountain. The ruins are very close to the world famous beaches and yacht harbor in Oludeniz.

Although the stone buildings are now roofless, weathered and the streets worn with age this is not an ancient city but a modern ruin deserted due to political reasons in the 1920s.

Back in Lycian times this town was known as Karmilassos. When the Greeks occupied here they changed its name to Levissi. Originally built in the 1700s the town was home to as many as 20,000 Greek Orthodox residents by the twentieth century.

After World War One and the collapse of the Ottoman Empire the Greco Turkish war began (1919-1922). Violence began towards and was mainly directed at the Greek Orthodox community within the new Turkish borders and the Muslim Turks in Greece. Hundreds of thousands of Greeks fled the violence in Turkey which made the governments agree to a mutual compulsory population exchange starting in 1923 to try and ease the bloodshed.

The residents of Kayakoy who had lived in peace with their Turkish neighbours had to abandon the town and go immediately to Greece.

In Kayakoy approximately 350 homes sit abandoned along with two Greek Orthodox churches and the fountains and cisterns that once watered the city.

Harsh winters and strong winds have slowly stripped the buildings down making this town look ancient.

Property Information