General Information

The city’s name means pomegranate in an ancient Anatolian language, although the city was founded by Greek settlers from Cyme in Aeolis (under Lydian rule at the time). Pomegranates were imprinted on coinage from the city, and the fruit remains to late the symbol of the city.

Culture and History

Not much is known of the history of Side, except for the times of Alexander the Great and the Romans. The city was abandoned during the 10th century AD due to increasing raids by highlanders, increasing Arab fleet activity, Christian zealots, earthquakes and similar catastrophies. The inhabitants of the city had moved to Antalya, and the city was from that point on referred to as “Old Antalya”. The city was also home to a considerable Jewish population during the early Byzantine times.

The most impressive structure left of the city is, without a doubt, the columns from the Temple of Apollo situated at the tip of the peninsula, with a great view of the Mediterranean sea. The sun setting behind these ruins is an iconic image of Side.