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In my recent travels to Turkey, I had the pleasure of visiting one of it's newest concept resorts called the Land of Legends. Located in Belek, Antalya, Land of Legends offers tourists a completely different kind of experience to the rest of Turkey's historical offerings. It is a modern resort combining three different attractions into one : A themed hotel, a water park and shopping complex. Considering it's diverse offering, the Land of Legends could turn out to be the killer attraction to re-invigorate the stagnating tourist industry in Turkey.
Although Turkey is becoming a prime destination for Chinese tourists, I was surprised to find no travel blogs about Land of Legends by Chinese bloggers. In most other historical sites in Turkey, the Chinese crowd often eclipses that of any other, after-all, one in five people in the world are Chinese. At the Land of Legends, the Chinese demographic is surprisingly sparse. I'll take this opportunity to step up as the first Chinese blogger to blog about this place, and hopefully give all my Chinese travel friends a good idea of what to expect.
The Land of Legends is a collaboration between Rixos and Dragone Productions. Rixos is a local success story with their hotel chain expanding to much of Europe, growing a very strong reputation. The Land of Legends is one of their newest hotels and was opened to the public in July 2016.
My first impression of the park is how large it is, the shopping avenue extends for several kilometers, along side the avenue, there is a small artificial river hosting the daily musical gondola parade show. Standing out at the end of the river, is the signature castle building resembling the Cinderella Castle(s) at Disney.
Like the Cinderella Castle, it is substantially taller than it's neighbouring buildings and consists of many pointy sub towers. I don't think the castle towers are accessible, but you can go inside the ground level. Unlike the Cinderella Castle at Disney which is a more Gothic style of architecture, the castle at Land of Legends has a more localised Turkish flair which is the dominant style throughout the resort.
Throughout the resort, we can find elements of Greek and Roman influence, from the style of the buildings, to the statues and stone carvings. Historically, both the Greek and Roman empires have ruled Turkey, and thus the Legends as referred to by the resort name echoes the importance of these eras. An example of the Greek influence is the Hoplite soldier stone carving on the side of the wall.
At night time, the resort turns into a dreamland with all of the buildings illuminating themselves with strategically placed lights. I actually preferred the night time ambience, not only is it cooler making for a comfortable evening stroll, the orange glow of the street lamps and towers emphasise the designs of the buildings in ways you wouldn't see during day time. It's much more romantic as a result!
These are some pictures of the main building. This is where the hotel part of the resort is, and so it is also where you'll find the hotel facilities like the restaurants, health center, library, games room etc.
Can you recognise the statues? It is of course Julius Caesar, and the quadriga four horse chariot. Both famous Roman sculptures.
The main building is called Kingdom and with 400 luxury rooms, the name is very well suited to it's grand scale. From the outside, it is hard to tell just how large the building is, but from one end to the other, it is over 1 kilometer. All of the hotel amenities are in this building, this includes the main restaurant where breakfast and dinner are served, but also various lounges for gaming, reading, snacking among others.
Land of legends prides itself with it's consistent classical theme throughout the park, rooms included! Even outside the rooms, the entire hotel is decorated with Roman cartoons and physical Roman style ornaments. Since this is a family resort, the main demographic the hotel wants to appeal to is children, as such, the use of vibrant colours play well with the funny style cartoon Roman soldiers.
Inside, the room is more like a playground than somewhere to sleep. The wall papers have more of the Roman cartoons, and they are cleverly placed throughout the room to make the whole place come to live. Some are life size, whilst others are miniature cartoons circling around the top ledge of the room.
Even the furniture is consistent with the Roman theme. For instance, the table is like a part of a horse and carriage, and the room lamps are Roman style soldier helmets.
The standard rooms come with a balcony, and some view of the shopping avenue. There are of course upgrades available which range from deluxe rooms to the Kingdom suite depending on your needs.
The attention to detail makes the room a lot of fun, and even though I'm no longer a child, I felt like I lost a few years in age whilst inside the room. I tried to find all the different cartoons in the room and take a picture with them!
Each room also comes fitted with an LED TV and Playstation 4! Surely this is a kids dream!
A lot of the objects in the room come to life and in doing so, reveal their true utility!
Hello? Is that Julius Caesar? Are we ready to attack?
Depends on what my other general says!!
The main lobby is extremely spacious and also sports some very colourful decoration. Just behind the reception desk, you'll find a huge screen playing videos of various points of interest in the park. Above, you can see the famous hot air balloons of Capadoccia.
If it isn't already obvious, the hotel is catered for adolescents and therefore it has all of the fun and games you would come to expect kids to enjoy.
There is a library for those who like to tuck into some children's books, and then there's also the gaming cafe. You would probably expect a gaming cafe to have lots of computers, but this is quite literally a cafe with a big screen in the background and customers can play console games whilst enjoying a drink at the "bar".
What would a children's dream be without endless supplies of candy? The land of legends provides unlimited candy at various booths throughout the hotel, all for free. This is surely a nightmare in disguise for parents..
There is a mini village inside the the hotel. All these colourful houses are playhouses for the children.
Explore the hotel some more and you'll find a couple other interesting places worth visiting. First is the real life gaming area which has various types of board games and physical games for both the parents and children to play. If that isn't enough, there is also a dance area with a DJ playing at certain times during the day.
Those who feel guilty eating all the candy can go burn it off at the gym which is also inclusive of your stay. Strangely enough, I never saw anybody in there, so exercising must not have been on the top of people's minds.
Before we move on to the food, the obligatory visit from a local Turkish Cat!
Breakfast is included as part of your stay and is served buffet style in a large dining hall. There is no shortage of choice here, whether it's a traditional English breakfast, or an international style breakfast, there is something for everyone here and as an added bonus, it's all presented very nicely too.
Check out my video tour!
And that wraps up our first look at the new Land of Legends resort in Belek, Antalya, Turkey! I've always been a big fan of these kinds of hybrid resorts combining the hotel and theme park experience, so my expectations of the Land of Legends was very high. Not only is it the biggest water park in all of Europe, it's also the only one of it's kind. Sure, there are Disney's, Alton Towers and a host of many other theme parks, but how many integrate them with a water park in some of the nicest Mediterranean weather anywhere to be found?
Then, how many of them go to meticulous detail to preserve their branding and theme, even in the corners of every room?
The Land of Legends draws a lot of attention because is the answer to many of these questions, and then some. It's nearest competitor is Atlantis in the Bahamas, and luckily, I've had the opportunity to spend a lot of time there to properly compare them. In the next few posts about Land of Legends, I'll be sharing more the possible activities at the park and giving you a verdict on whether it is indeed better than Atlantis, or it could do with some improvement.
For now, I hope you enjoyed this post, and found it to be informative enough to help you decide if this is the kind of place you're looking to visit. At the same time, if you've already decided you're definitely going, you can now get a sneak peak and early look at what to expect!
Please upvote the post if you liked it, be sure to follow for more travel blogs, and leave a comment to let me know what you think!
我非常珍惜在外旅行的时光，在我看来，旅行给了心灵最美的一场邂逅，旅行会上瘾，能让我在全新的环境中接受挑战，发现自我。虽然路程很辛苦，却带给我无穷的快乐和幸福感，旅行最大的魅力，就是给了我无限的空间去放生想象力，去盼望与期待生命里一切的美好。在土耳其安塔利亚最后一段行程中，终于到了我最期盼的部分，那就是一起去探索欧洲最大的主题乐园——The Land of Legends传奇之地主题公园酒店。