Retire To Antalya Turkey: The Hub Of The Turkish Mediterranean

Do you love the Mediterranean and are looking for somewhere a little cheaper than Italy, Greece and Spain? Have you thought of Turkey with its beautiful oceanside towns of which Antalya is the hub for all of them.

Here are all the common questions people ask when thinking of living or retiring to Antalya:

  • Is Antalya a good place to live?
  • Is Antalya Turkey worth visiting?
  • Is Antalya Turkey safe?
  • What is special about Antalya Turkey?
  • Is Istanbul or Antalya better?
  • Do they speak English in Antalya?
  • How much does it cost to rent an apartment in Antalya?
  • Is food cheap in Antalya?
  • How much is an average meal in Antalya?
  • What is the cost of living in Antalya?
  • What is healthcare like in Antalya?

Now that you know what questions people are asking before moving to Antalya, let us answer each one for you.

Is Antalya a good place to live?

Yes it is one of the best places to live on the Turkish Mediterranean coast for those that like living in bigger cities with everything at your fingertips. It has a long stretch of beach and is nestled in between multiple mountain ranges so you get beautiful snow capped mountain views while having access to the ocean.

Being the hub of the mediterranean towns on the Turkish coast it also has a major airport and transportation to get you around the region. The accommodation prices are cheap and the food is as well. Combine that with a great lifestyle with ocean front bars and restaurants and you have everything you could want for your retirement.

Here are some important facts for you as well:

Population – 1.4 million
Temperature – 8°C to 33°C or 46°F to 91°F
Tourist Information –

NOTE: It is only the coldest temperatures at night for a couple of months a year in december and january so just cool enough for a nice doona at night.

Is Antalya Turkey worth visiting?

Yes it is in my opinion as it is the hub of the Turkish mediterranean and not only is there everything you could want in the city like I mentioned above but it also gives you access to multiple small coastal towns and the long stretches of beaches in Alanya. It has great food choices, cheap alcohol, great accommodation, a beach and some beautiful coastal drives.

Having spent a bit of time there myself I can thoroughly recommend it as a great base camp for your first holiday to the region and to explore the other coastal cities. This is a very popular place for UK holidaymakers and they have known about it for years. Hiring a car and driving up and down the coast you will find some beautiful very European style coastal towns that will capture your heart and make you want to return time and time again.

Is Antalya Turkey safe?

Yes, Antalya is safe, especially for one of the bigger cities in Turkey. Overall Turkey gets a bad wrap due to a few bad moments in history but the people have shown time and again they want nothing to do with any civil unrest and are more European in lifestyle and life choices.

Most people are just unfamiliar with their religion and I must admit I was a little apprehensive on my first trip there about my personal security. But once you have taken the plunge like many Europeans and English visitors you will see how welcoming and safe it is. People go out of their way to help you and you will make friends quickly and easily.

NOTE: Just like with any bigger city just obey the same rules of not going down dark streets wearing expensive jewellery late at night in cheaper parts of town and you will be fine. This is the same advice I give for any big city like Paris, London, New York.

What is special about Antalya Turkey?

The natural beauty of the area will astound you from the snow capped mountain ranges surrounding the town you can view from your beach towel. To the oceanfront waterfall called Aşağı Düden Şelalesi and restaurants on the oceanside bluffs. Access to many coastal towns along the beautiful ocean roads there is a lot that is special about Antalya.

Is Istanbul or Antalya better?

In my opinion Antalya is the better city for living and Istanbul is better for shopping and being a tourist. While Antalya has great shopping too, the bazaars in Istanbul can not be beaten for uniqueness. The level of health care is world class in both and the people are a little more friendly in Antalya being a smaller town with a more traditional feel.

Do they speak English in Antalya?

Turkish is the formal language but you will find that the younger generation know English and so do most of the people in tourist areas so you will not find it hard to communicate. They are a very helpful people and even if you get someone that does not speak English with a little sign language you normally get what you want.

How much does it cost to rent an apartment in Antalya?

For a 1 bed and 1 bath it will cost you about $390 USD per month to rent for a 40 sqm property on the oceanfront of the same cost for a 70 sqm property a little further out. For a 3 bed and 1 bath property with 150 sqm it will cost you about $560 USD per month near the ocean.

Here is a website you can look at more prices of rental properties in Antalya:
LINK: Realty World

Is food cheap in Antalya?

Yes, food is very cheap in Antalya to buy from local markets or from supermarkets as well. One of the largest supermarket chains in Turkey is Migros and you can look up the prices of everything you shop for regularly on their website. 

How much is an average meal in Antalya?

In Antalya street food like a kebab (kebap) will cost you around $3 USD and a meal in Burger King will cost about $4 USD and a meal at a mid range restaurant about $8 USD. The restaurant prices vary depending on whether you order a steak, seafood or whether you order local dishes which are cheaper.

As anyone that knows me knows I do like my meat which most local dishes have and also the traditional Turkish breakfast for its variety which normally costs 100 TL for two people or $6 USD which is a great deal and includes turkish tea which I am also a fan of. You can swap that for coffee in most places as well too.

What is the cost of living in Antalya?

The cost of living in a 1 bed apartment close to the sea in Antalya is $735 USD per month including most of your expenses. For a three bedroom you will pay $905 USD including most of your normal monthly costs. Keep in mind that Antalya is a very popular place to live. 

Two of the options are available in the table below: 

ExpenseMonthly Cost
Rent (1 bed)$390 USD
Rent (3 bed)$560 USD
Utilities (Electricity / Water / Gas)$85 USD
Mobile$5 USD – Turkcell
Groceries (Including Bottled Water)$100 USD
Dining Out (2 people X 8 times)$40 USD
Internet$15 USD (1000Mb down / 20Mb Up) – Turkcell
Petrol$100 USD Car (80 L or 20 gal) 
Total (2 Bed)$735 USD
Total (3 Bed)$905 USD

NOTE: The accommodation above is based on living close to the ocean and also western style accommodation. You can live a lot cheaper the further from the sea you are and in local style accommodation instead.

What is healthcare like in Antalya?

Having been in and used the facilities in the hospitals they are world class in the bigger cities and they have special staff on hand that speak multiple languages and always English. They have the same equipment you would expect from top tier countries and the costs are very cheap. They also have specialist eye hospitals around the country and in Ankara.

Specifically in Antalya you will find a slew of hospitals including a couple of University ones as well. The Memorial Antalya Hastanesi is one of a chain of hospitals around Turkey that you could get a health care plan from instead of international insurance. They are first class and my friend had a cyst removed from an eye and they did great work and he could even get free follow up work for a month. 

They are open 24 hours in Ankara and specifically support foreigners. They also do a yearly check up that covers pretty much everything from glasses to teeth xray to a battery of lab tests that you can have a look at by clicking below.

LINK: Memorial Checkup Programs (Check out the VIP ones)

When you first go to Turkey you will have to have health insurance so you have the choice of getting a local plan that will be way cheaper or a global health insurance that will cost you from Cigna $443 USD per month for someone that is 65yo at the writing of this article.

You can check to the following websites for International health insurance pricing for Turkey:

Some of the local providers of health insurance are:

The good news is that you can also go on the global health in turkey for about $85 USD per month after staying in the country for a year. This is their public health system so while it will be good to join you may also want to keep your extras or hospital only cover on your private insurance to make sure you are a priority in the queue.

If you are thinking of Turkey and are still looking around at different places then check out this article on the best places to live and retire in Turkey.

ARTICLE: The 11 Best Places To Retire In Turkey

Recent Posts