Turkey or the Republic of Turkey embraces different cultures and civilizations that connect Europe and Asia. It is bordered by eight countries, which are named as Syria, Iraq, Iran, Nakhchivan, Armenia, Georgia, Greece and Bulgaria. It is also surrounded by the Black Sea in the north, Aegean Sea in the west and the Mediterranean Sea in the south. Turkey is worldwide famous for its exotic beach destinations and some interesting sporting activities like white-water rafting, trekking, yachting and skiing. This beautiful country is certainly a worth-to-be-visited tour destination where travel vacationers have lots of activities to enjoy. The splendor of this place also lies within its historical monuments, huge shopping centers and wonderful nightlife.
Ankara is the capital city of Turkey. In the year 1923, it was declared as the capital of newly shaped ‘The Republic of Turkey’ through the Treaty of Lausanne. Now, it is the second largest city of Turkey (with Istanbul stands at the first place) and has gained commercial and industrial significance for the country.
The official language of Turkey is Turkish. About 85% of the population speaks this language. However, some people also speak other languages like Kurdish, Arabic, Zaza, Laz, Greek, Romani, Jewish, Armenian and Circassian.
The Turkish Lira is the official currency of Turkey. It is also used by Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. The currency of Turkish Lira is subdivided into 100 Kurus.
The weather in Turkey is varied from the Mediterranean to oceanic to continental climate conditions and thus it maintains hot and dry summer followed by cool and wet winters. Generally, the winter temperature remains here at below 1°C while the temperature of summer normally remains above 30°C.
Mode of Transport
The transport in Turkey is both public and private. You can utilize any of these options to reach easily at your destination. Here are the various ways of transportation in Turkey:
By Air: There are multiple flights running from or to Turkey, which provides convenience for long distances. Istanbul's Atatürk Airport and Sabiha Gökçen Airport are the major airports of the country and some of the main flights are Sun Express, Pegasus Air, Anadolu Jet, Onur Air and Atlasjet.
By Road: Several road options are available for the transportation in Turkey. Luxurious buses are constantly running throughout the day which can be used to reach at the desired destination within the country. In addition, you can also rent a car or taxi to make your travel more convenient.
By Train: To make your Turkey tour more enjoyable, you can board train to reach one destination to another. Express trains, super expresses trains and sleeping car trains are regularly working to take the commuters from one destination to another.
By Sea: Reaching Turkey has become easier as well as enjoyable due to various transportation services by sea. You can board cruise ships to reach at various cities of Turkey with lots of convenience.
The main cuisine in Turkey is Ottoman Cuisine, which is the mixture of Central Asian, Mediterranean, Balkan and Middle Eastern cuisines. However, the cuisine here is also influenced by the cuisines of Western Europe. In general way, people of this country prefer to eat rice, stuffed dolmas, fishes, bulgur, koftes, eggplant and many other delicious cuisines.
According to an estimate, there are more than 300 shopping malls running in Turkey where any traveler can find multiple things to buy. The most historic and famous shopping center in Turkey is the Grand Bazaar, where many craftsmen provides a range of artifacts to the customers. It is also famous for its great interior work. People here also go for the shopping at the Spice Bazaar in which the guests can buy attractive products at reasonable prices. Apart from these shopping arcades, there are some other places in Turkey where shopping of both big and small products can be done easily.
Here are the major restaurants in Turkey in which you can taste delicious food items:
Lokanta Maya: It is a beautiful restaurant in which one can savor contemporary Turkish and seasonal cuisines. The courteous staff of this dining place takes care of you by offering mouth-watering food items in conjunction with wide range of wines and spirits. (Address: Kemankeş Karamustafa Paşa Mh. Kemankeş Cd No: 35, Beyoğlu, Turkey)
La Mouette: It is a fine dining restaurant at the terrace of Beyoğlu's Tomtom Suites Hotel. People come at this eating place to taste delectable Turkish cuisines, tasty desserts and collection of cocktails. (Address: Fetihtepe Mh. Kaptan SK No: 18, Beyoğlu, Turkey)
Rumelihisari Iskele: Come at this restaurant and taste delightful sea food. Traditional Turkish cuisine is also provided here along with large collection of wines, cocktails, mocktails and spirits. (Address: Rumeli Hisarı Mh. 34470 Istanbul, Turkey)
Giritli: It is a wonderful fish restaurant which is famous for local wines, beer or raki. Delectable food items are also the specialty of this dining place. It remains open for noon-midnight daily. (Address: Cankurtaran Mh. Keresteci Hakkı SK No: 8, 34122 Istanbul, Turkey)
Mikla: Situated on the rooftop of the luxurious Marmara Pera Hotel, this restaurant is best known for offering Scandinavian and Turkish food items. It also offers an extensive wine list to the customers. (Address: Cafe Marmara Pera, Meşrutiyet Cd No: 1, 34430 Beyoğlu, Turkey)
Major Tourist Attractions
Turkey is certainly listed among the best travel destinations in the world because it has beautiful sightseeing locations. Some of them are:
Cappadocia: It is one of the most-preferred tourist destinations of Turkey. It is the region which is famous for peculiar rock formations and historical heritage in the town of Goreme. At here, the fairy chimneys are created as the outcome of wind and water erosion of two varied layers. The fairy chimneys of Cappadocia have been void out with the purpose of creating houses, churches and storage amenities.
Hagia Sophia: Hagia Sophia is the most visited tourist attraction in Turkey. It is a well-reserved ancient building, which was established in sixth century AD by the Byzantine Emperor Justinian. Later, it was converted to Mosque and now it has transformed into a museum. It allures worldwide visitors with its amalgamation of Byzantine and Muslim architecture.
Ephesus: Another major attraction of Turkey is Ephesus. It is composed of well-preserved Greek and Roman shells of the world. With its proximity to Kusadasi and Izmir resorts, Ephesus becomes more popular among the travel vacationers. Other major attractions of Ephesus are the Library of Celsus, the Ancient Theatre and the Temple of Hadrian.
Topkapı Palace: Topkapı Palace is the former residence of the Ottoman Sultans. It was the main point of Istanbul’s social and political life for myriad of years. It is declared as ‘UNESCO World Heritage Site’ and the tourists come here to take pleasure of its Ottoman architecture, courtyards and popular Muslim and Christian artifacts.
Basilica Cistern: In the list of top tourist attractions of Turkey, Basilica Cistern is surely topped the list. It is an ancient underground wonder and Istanbul’s best Byzantine sites. It is adorned with striking columns, vaulted ceilings and ornate carvings of ancient Gods. Many visitors to Turkey prefer to visit at this beautiful destination.
More than 1000 festivals are celebrated in Turkey, which are divided into three categories such as:
National Festivals: There are lots of national festivals celebrated in Turkey. Some of the prominent ones are Republic Festival, Liberation Festival and 30th August Victory Festival. These festivals are celebrated with great respect and excitement by the people of Turkish towns and cities. On the occasion of these festivals, people used to play drums and zurnas to rejoice the occasion while in some places, they perform folk dances during these festivals.
Religious Festivals: Apart from the national festivals, Turkish people also celebrate their life with two most important religious festivals i.e. Ramadan Festival and the Feast of Sacrifice. However, they are not celebrated on the same day every year. The Ramadan Festival is celebrated after completion of one month of fasting and people used to gather to take part in Ramadan shows. The festival of Feast of Sacrifice is celebrated during the period between the month of Sewal and Zilhicce. During this festival, hadjis sacrifice rams, camels or cattle in Mecca.
Other Festivals: There are also some traditional festivals celebrated in Turkey such as Ahirkapi Hidrellez Festival and Polonezkoy Cherry Festival. Ahirkapi Hidrellez Festival is celebrated by Turkish people to welcome the arrival of spring while the Polonezkoy Cherry Festival is relished to pay respect to the culture and tradition of the Polish Community residing in Istanbul.