Turkey is often dismissed as yet another generic beach holiday, however that opinion of Holidays to Turkey couldn’t be further from the truth. Ever since the rise of the Ottoman empire, Turkey has been an absolute epicenter for hugely significantly cultural sites. That combined with the amazing weather, delicious food and family friendly destinations means that Turkey is justifying its regular inclusion as a must-visit destination.
So whether you’re looking to flop at the side of the pool, or stimulate your brain with some historical context, Turkey has you covered. However, you can easily mix both aspects and allow yourself a complete holiday. When you do make it to Turkey however, make sure not to miss these 5 gems:
The only city in the world that straddles 2 continenets – both geographically, and culturally, Istanbul is the bridge between Europe and the middle east. Some of Istanbul’s most famous sites include the endless Grand Bazaar, one of the wonders of the modern world in the Hagia Sophia and the peerless Blue Mosque. Give yourself at least 3 days to explore this wonderful city.
If the undulating, karst landscape isn’t enough to impress you, nor the impressive cave hotels in the main town of Goreme then surely the hot-air ballooning will get you? This is one of the most popular bucket list items across the entire globe, and when over 100 hot air balloons take off each morning as the sun rises, it’s tough to imagine a more spectacular site. Not cheap at around $300 but it’s an experience you’ll never forget.
Home of the ‘cotton castle’ , these natural hot springs have been a official place of leisure since the second century. The travertines are dotted all the way down the cliff, meandering from one hot spring to the next, allowing for an amazing, brilliant white set of infinity poools. It’s a sight to behold, so don’t omit this gem from your Turkish itinerary.
4) Mount Nemrut
Another UNESCO world heritage site that Turkey can boast of, Mount Nemrut is a little trickier to access. It’s home to huge 8/9m seated statues, now with the heads scattered across the land. Accessing the summit requires a bit of a trek considering it’s located at 2125m (so beware, it gets chilly!) so come prepared, and bring a spare battery – you’ll want a lot of pics!
A huge archeological draw for all the culture buffs who venture to Turkey, Ephesus is home to the perennially impressive ‘libary’. The ruins are the main draw for the area, but the town of Ephesus is a nice little place to share a glass of wine after picking your jaw up from sites of the day.
Not just a beach destination, right? Exactly, so pack your passport, and jump on the next flight to Istanbul – the only question you need to ask yourself is would you like a beef kebab or a lamb kebab?!