Xanthos-Letoon, ancient cities of the Lycian Union

Fethiye has an amazing historical backdrop as well as the wonderful beaches, the sea and the scenery.

Xanthos and Letoon, one of the most important ancient cities of the Lycian Union, which have survived until today, became the administrative and religious center of Lycia. Both cities with significant archaeological values ​​were included in the UNESCO World Heritage List as cultural heritage in 1988.
The ancient Lycian civilization cities in the Teke Peninsula in the Mediterranean Region are a union of twenty-three cities. Xanthos and Letoon, located on the Fethiye-Kaş highway and only 5 kilometers between them, are among the cities of the Lycian City Unions. The Union created a common culture and left many important works behind.


The ancient city of Xanthos, located in Kınık district of Antalya, is the oldest and largest cultural and commercial center of Lycia. The city was the capital of Lycia in ancient times. It was called Xanthos by the Greeks during the Hellenization period.

Xanthos has experienced many invasions and battles throughout its history, but many times it has been burned, but it has been rebuilt every time.


The ancient city of Letoon, near the village of Kumluova in Muğla, is one of the most important religious centers of the Lycian region.

The name of the city is based on legends. According to a story told by the poet Ovidius, God Zeus falls in love with the beautiful Leto. Leto becomes pregnant with Zeus’ twin children. Goddess Hera, the jealous wife of Zeus, wants to prevent the birth of children. Fearing Hera, Leto escapes to Delos Island where he gives birth to the sun god Apollo and the moon goddess Artemis. He departs for Lykia in order to get further from Hera. He encounters wolves on his way and reaches the banks of the Xanthos River under their guidance. To show her gratitude for the wolves that accompanied her on her journey, Leto named the region “Lykia,” which is derived from the word “lykos”, the Greek wolf.

If you want to visit these two ancient cities, we can tour these places within the scope of Fethiye tour.

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