The stunning nation of Turkey is the one country in the world where east truly meets west – because the country is located in South-eastern Europe and spans such a large geographic landmass that it also reaches into South-western Asia.
As a result, Turkey is a nation of mixed cultural and historic flavours, a country where the modern skyscrapers of Istanbul stand alongside the minarets of ancient mosques, and where holiday makers can experience a whole host of flavours, sights and events in just a short visit.
If you’re thinking about where to go for a weekend break, a summer holiday getaway or for a holiday of a lifetime, there are a million reasons to visit Turkey – and in this article we will explore five of the best reasons for you to look a little more closely at this country of contrasts.
1) Culture and retail therapy in Istanbul. Side by side on the streets of Istanbul you have the most luxurious shopping malls in the world with grand bazaars where peddlers vie for your trade as they sell locally grown produce. As a backdrop to the eclectic mix of retail delights on the streets of Istanbul you have legendary landmarks such as the Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia – and so no matter what you prefer doing when on holiday, you are sure to find thrills and experiences to delight you in Istanbul.
2) Sailing the sun-drenched seas off the south coast. The southern coastline of Turkey is known as the Turkish Riviera. It is home to famous resorts such as Bodrum, Alanya, Antalya and Side and from each of these beautiful towns you can charter boats to bob about on the Mediterranean and Aegean seas whilst basking in the summer sunshine.
3) Castle hoping. Along the south coast in Turkey there are crusader castles in towns such as Bodrum and Alanya and you can explore these stunning ruins and the museums they now house…getting to learn more about how this is one nation that has been fought over for generations because of its stunning beauty, its geographic importance and because of the wealth of natural resources it is home to.
4) Sun, sea and sand sampling. Turkey’s Riviera is world famous as a summer holiday destination and it’s not surprising…enjoying a summer season that spans from March through to November and an extremely temperate winter season, you can enjoy the beaches, the surf and the stunning sunshine when on holiday in this part of the nation.
5) Sumptuous cuisine and excellent wine. Turkish cuisine is all about using the very best locally grown produce and cooking it simply to ensure the natural flavours are maintained. You can enjoy a meze, which is a meal of many tiny offerings of local dishes, followed perhaps by a traditional fish dish or kebab, and you can wash the whole lot down with a bottle of Turkey’s finest red or white wine. The food and drink available in Turkey is exquisite and of very high quality…but watch out for the deserts which are highly addictively sweet!
If you’re looking for a stunning nation in which to explore history, culture, leisure pursuits and landscapes, give Turkey a look in 2008.