The ruins of Patara can be reached via the road to Gelemis, 15kms after turning off the Fethiye-Kalkan road.
Patara is renowned as the birthplace of Apollo and is one of the oldest and most important cities of Lycia. It was named , Patara in the Lycian tongue, now simplified to Patara.
We know that the city existed in the 5th and 6th centuries B.C. and that is was saved from destruction by opening its gates to Alexander. After the death of Alexander, it fell into the hands first of Demetrios, in 304 B.C. and later the Egyptian Ptolemaios II Philadelphos. For a period it bore the Egyptian name Arsinoe; this name did not survive beyond the Egyptian rule. Patara was re-captured by Antiochos III in 190 B.C.
Patara had a three-vote right in the Lycian confederacy, like the cities of Xanthos, Tlos, Olympos and Myra. The confederacy generally held its conferances at Patara.