Reasons Why You Should Visit Turkey at Least Once in Your Lifetime

| © Hercules Milas / Alamy Stock Photo
Feride Yalav-Heckeroth

Crystal clear waters, tall mountains, the ruins of ancient empires small idyllic villages, huge cosmopolitan cities – there are so many reasons why you should stay in Turkey. Here, Culture Trip takes a look at some of the best.

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Amazing food

Every region in Turkey has a unique kitchen culture, using distinct ingredients and recipes. As such, Turkish cuisine is much more than tasty kebabs and baklava; it includes fresh seafood and meze, a whole world of desserts, huge breakfast spreads, Ottoman classics, vegetable dishes, and much more.

Beautiful beaches

Bodrum, Antalya, Izmir and Fethiye have some of the most beautiful beaches in Turkey, with a spectrum that includes everything from secluded coves to exciting beach parties. One of the best ways to experience Turkey’s many beaches and the Mediterranean or Aegean Coast is by taking a Blue Cruise.

Turkish baths

The hamam experience has become synonymous with Turkey and is a perennial favourite. Being scrubbed and washed and massaged in a cloud of soap foam is, after all, a spectacular way to unwind.

Archaeological sites

Witnessing many empires and civilizations, Turkey has a remarkable amount of archaeological sites spread out all over the country. From Istanbul palaces and mosques to the ruins of Ephesus to the underground cities of Cappadocia, the nation is a haven for archaeology and history enthusiasts.

Excellent museums

Turkey also has a lot of fantastic museums that actively preserve findings from the many archaeological sites all around the country. From the largest mosaic museum in the world (Zeugma in Gaziantep) to the Ottoman palace museums of Istanbul, there’s plenty.

Great food shopping

With such incredible cuisine, it’s no wonder that Turkey also has a lot of food shopping opportunities from open-air markets to bazaars. The many neighbourhood markets are where locals buy their fresh produce, while the Grand Bazaar and Spice Bazaar are where tourists like to do some shopping.

Natural wonders

Apart from big cities like Ankara, Istanbul and Izmir, Turkey also has plenty of natural escapes, from skiing in the Uludağ Mountains to hiking in the Rize Province. Let’s not forget the white travertine terraces of Pamukkale.

Off-the-beaten-track wonders

Turkey also has a lot of hidden archaeological sites and historically significant cities. Whether it’s the ruined medieval Armenian city of Ani or an ancient king’s tomb at Mount Nemrut, there’s a lot to discover all around.

Striking architecture

Turkey’s architectural scope is striking and includes everything from historic churches to stone houses built by former Anatolian empires. From Istanbul to Mardin and beyond, you’ll always find a structure that really changes your aesthetic perspective.

The people

Turkish people are known for their profound hospitality and spending time with them is a truly valuable lesson in genuine human relationships. You’ll always be invited over to someone’s house for a delicious meal or at least a few glasses of Turkish tea and something sweet.

Culture Trips launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes places and communities so special.

Our immersive trips, led by Local Insiders, are once-in-a-lifetime experiences and an invitation to travel the world with like-minded explorers. Our Travel Experts are on hand to help you make perfect memories. All our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

All our travel guides are curated by the Culture Trip team working in tandem with local experts. From unique experiences to essential tips on how to make the most of your future travels, we’ve got you covered.

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