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Turkey

Every country’s identity is defined through its flair for culture and the wonderful people that welcome you. True to this ethos is the mystic land of Turkey. Officially known as the Republic of Turkey, it is a Eurasian country that stretches across the Anatolian peninsula in Western Asia and Thrace in the Balkan region of South Eastern Europe. Turkey is bordered by eight countries: Bulgaria to the northwest; Greece to the west; Georgia to the northeast; Armenia, Azerbaijan and Iran to the east; and Iraq and Syria to the southeast. The Mediterranean Sea and Cyprus are to the south; the Aegean Sea to the west; and the Black Sea is to the north. Contrary to general perceptions, it is very safe to visit this wonderful destination that has some enigmatic sites and stories to reveal.

The Turkish landscape is dotted with battlegrounds, ruined castles and the palaces of great empires. History buffs can immerse themselves in marvels and mementos stretching back to the dawn of civilization. Discover Istanbul's Old City which was the capital of the Christian Byzantines and then the Islamic Ottoman Empire or simply explore the northern suburbs of Istanbul by ferry-boat. Visit the old Ottoman city of Bursa south of Istanbul, with its beautiful 15th-century Green Mosque, covered bazaar and Islamic Art Museum and also take in the grandeur of the remains of the Hellenistic and Roman city of Ephesus. Tour the Bodrum site, which is one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the Mausoleum of Mausolus, and now Turkey's finest Aegean resort and do not miss Cappadocia. Marvel at the spectacular landscape of rock cones, pinnacles and ravines. But if you want to simply unwind, spend an afternoon being pampered, try an afternoon at a hamam, or let the warm waters of the Mediterranean coast lap at your toes. Adventure lovers can head east to Nemrut Daği National Park as well.

The country’s tumultuous history has left a deep legacy. But for ordinary Turks that passion finds its outlet, not in martial ardour, but in simple pleasures such as family, food, music, football, and friendship. Offering some great bazaar atmospheres and the most delicious cuisine, you cannot miss the meze and end every meal with some shisha, Turkish tea and baklava.


Quick Facts

Location: Asia Minor / Southeastern Europe

Time: GMT + 2

Capital: Ankara

Visa: Pre-departure visas required for some nationalities. However some nationalities can obtain a sticker-type entry visa at the point of entry for a fee (prices are dependent on nationality).

Language: Turkish. Kurdish is also spoken by a minority in the southeast. French, German and English are widely spoken in major cities and tourist areas.

Weather

Although Turkey is situated in a geographical location where climatic conditions are quite temperate, the diverse nature of the landscape, and the existence in particular of the mountains that run parallel to the coasts, result in significant differences in climatic conditions from one region to the other. While the coastal regions enjoy milder climates, the inland Anatolia plateau experiences hot summers and cold winters with limited rainfall. Turkey is a year-round. Although the tourist "high season” is from mid-June through mid-September, Spring and Fall are the best seasons to travel. The sun is warm and skies are generally clear. You can expect mild to warm temperatures and some rain during this time.

Currency

The Turkish lira is the currency of Turkey