Turkey enjoys a wonderful melting pot of influences, making it one of the most fascinating countries in the world. Elaborate mosques jostle for space with ancient Roman temples, while traditional spice markets lie in the shadow of designer shopping malls. And then there’s the cuisine, which is a delicious fusion of Mediterranean, Balkan and Middle Eastern dishes.
Turkey’s mountainous northern coast is virtually untouched by tourism thanks to its long rainy season. But the Mediterranean coast is a completely different story. Its postcard-perfect beaches and lively seaside towns have made it a real hot spot for summer holidays.
Everyone in history seems to have wanted a piece of Turkey at one time or another. The Greeks, Romans and Ottomans are just some of the bygone civilisations to leave their stamp on the country, from crumbling temples to walled cities. Some of the best archaeological sites are a stone’s throw from the Mediterranean resorts around Antalya, Bodrum and Dalaman.
Turkey is the ultimate bridge between east and west, both in terms of its culture and its location. It’s a vast country, with about 5% of its landmass in Europe, the rest in Asia. It also has two completely separate coasts – one on the Mediterranean, one on the Black Sea. Its capital, Ankara, sits in the centre of the country, about 400 kilometres east of Istanbul.