Turkey: Holidays

Bridging the East and West


Beach in Turkey

Turkey has an 8000km coastline and some very impressive beaches, making it one of the most regular haunts for a beach holiday in Turkey. Turkey is surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea on the south, the Black Sea on the north and the Aegean Sea in the west and happens to be dotted with breathtakingly beautiful beaches. The Turkish shoreline offer travelers miles of sun soaked sand and gravel beaches. The two most popular beaches for a relaxing beach holiday in Turkey are Olu Deniz Beach and the Altinkum Beach. There are a host of other less popular beaches that attract tourists as well. Located on the South West coast of Turkey on the Aegean Sea, Olu Deniz is a beach resort village, with the beach rated one of the five best beaches in the world! Due to its outstanding natural beauty, this beach is declared a part of national conservation project and it is protected from any building and developments activity. The weather is superb and you can swim in the natural lagoon behind the beach ten months of the year. The small town has a numbers of hotels and accommodation is never a problem, although you must book in advance. Another popular summer resort in Turkey with a stunning beach is the Altinkum beach resort. Other popular locations for a beach holiday in Turkey include a few of the beaches along the Mediterranean coastline like the Patara, Olimpos, Alanya, Side, Calis, Anamur and Kemer beaches. The Pamucak Beach, 7 km west of Ephesus has soft spongy sands that slowly elevate in the southern fringes of the beach to Kusadasi, the Aqua Fantasy Water Park. The beach itself is always abuzz with activity with the Aegean Sea waves whipping up the sands and blurring the waters. In Ephesus itself, is the Kusadasi beach has become popular with the tourists. Its proximity to the Ephesus remains attracts both historical tourists as well as the conventional beach public. Turkey scores 8 on 10 as a beach holiday destination.


Backpacking in Turkey

Backpacking holidays in Turkey are popular with a number of European backpackers heading to the country owing to its economic viability and stunning surroundings. Tour companies organize backpacking trips, or you can form a group of your own and set of on an individual backpacking holiday in Turkey.

Interesting areas for a backpacking holiday in Turkey include Ephesus as a well conserved ancient Greek city, Pamukkale and Cappadocia with the world famous calcium deposits and thermal baths amongst Greek and Roman ruins, the cities of Millet, Priene, Didium and Kusadasi for their fascinating landscapes and ruins. Most travelers being their backpacking holiday in Turkey from Istanbul. Many backpackers spend 4 to 5 days in Istanbul itself, witnessing the culmination of two cultures in its architecture, museums and palaces.

Other areas popular for backpacking holidays in Turkey are the Kapei Mountains which are reached by foot from a small fishing village called Cumyuva, Cedelma which is a small mountain village in the middle of the Tahtalı Mountain chain among others. A backpacking holiday in Turkey is safe. Follow normal rules. Carry enough rations for long trips into the wilderness. Turkey scores 7 on 10 as a backpacking holiday destination.


Camping in Turkey

A camping holiday in Turkey is an interesting experience. The facilities available at most campsites are basic but the entire experience of camping is a whole lot of fun. Campsites locations and amenities vary greatly, from a basic field to fully equipped sites. Charges fluctuate accordingly, running from YTL4.50 to 15 ($3 to 10) per night per tent. Most campsites have permanent tents equipped with the essentials. There are some beautiful locations for a camping holiday in Turkey and many places where camping is dictated, either by the natural beauty of the landscape or by the lack of any other choice. This is especially true of the Aegean coast, where camping is the ultimate way to enjoy undeveloped but idyllic scenic surroundings. A camping holiday in Turkey in the wilds of the Kackar or Toros mountains is catching on. The Area of Kas near Antalya is popular for a camping holiday in Turkey. There are no safety hazards as such. Keep your wits about you, and you will enjoy your camping holiday in Turkey. As a camping holiday destination, Turkey scores 5 on 10.

City Breaks

City Breaks in Turkey

With some of the most beautiful cities in the world, a city break in Turkey is a must. The popular cities where a city break in Turkey is worthwhile include Istanbul, Ankara, Bodrum, Cappodocia, and Kusdasi. Besides world famous buildings such as the Blue Mosque, the Topkapi Palace and the Hagia Sofia, Istanbul boasts numerous museums and treasures. Modern buildings and snazzy supermarkets and malls stand nestled close to ancient palaces and museums. The ancient and modern covered markets manned by salesmen displaying a flair and charm that is their national gift. With an interesting nightlife, loads of eateries, shopping districts and places to visit, Istanbul is the city to be in for your city break in Turkey. The city of Bodrum is an interesting city to holiday in. A hit with tourists, this laidback city has a lot on offer in terms of ancient remains, museums, theatres and some excellent water sports. Ankara, the capital of Turkey, is located in the heart of Anatolia, and home to some of the country’s most interesting museums, archaeological remains like the Citadel, the Roman Theatre, temple of Augustus and the Roman Bath, beautiful parks and gardens and some exquisite décor shopping at Ankara’s Castle. Try the ‘Doner Kebabs’ of Ankara, a specialty of the city. Turkey scores 6 on 10 as a city break destination.

Corporate Weekend

Corporate Weekend in Turkey

For corporate weekends in Turkey, Istanbul offers an interesting break in terms of sightseeing, shopping, eating out and entertainment. Corporate weekends in Turkey also take tourists to Bodrum if you plan to indulge in some water sports. With extensive sandy beaches to soak in the sun, and a whole lot of adventurous water sports, Bodrum is a fun place to spend a corporate weekend in Turkey. Travelers can spend their time relaxing on the western coast Mediterranean beaches, strolling through the local bazaars for a great bargain or immersing themselves amongst the ancient ruins that date back 10,000 years on their corporate weekend in Turkey. For those wanting to do more than just relax on a beach, must-see tourist attractions include the mosques and museums of Istanbul, the ancient city of Ephesus, the tree houses in Olympos, the natural wonders of Cappadocia, a Turkish bath and the raw grunt of the Kirkpinar Oil Wrestling Competition. Turkey scores 6 on 10 as a corporate weekend destination.


Cruises in Turkey

The vast coastline of this beautiful Mediterranean country makes for perfect cruises in Turkey. Popular cruises in Turkey include those sailing to Greece and Italy. Among those within the country, the Aegean cruises in Turkey are well worth the experience. The turquoise waters of Turkey are filled with a bays and inlets and are a treasure trove for marine wildlife. Most cruises in Turkey offer water activities as well like snorkeling and scuba diving where tourists can experience the under water life in all its beauty. Popular harbors where most cruises in Turkey dock include Izmir, Çesme, Kusadasi, Bodrum, Datça, Bozburun, Marmaris, Göcek, Fethiye, Kalkan, Kas, Finike, Kemer and Antalya. Most cruises in turkey begin their journey from Istanbul. With an ample number of halts, cruises in Turkey allow tourists to explore the cities where the cruise is normally docked, with a whole day in hand. From shopping to exploring historical monuments and archaeological ruins and sites, there are lots of things to keep you occupied. On board entertainment on cruises in Turkey is interesting as well. Turkey scores 8 on 10 as a cruise holiday destination.

Culture and Arts in Turkey

Turkey is a land of pristine beauty with a rich and welcoming culture that charms visitors time and time again. For a cultural and arts holiday in Turkey, there are unlimited options at your disposal. Turkey has an interesting cultural side to the country, being in the midst of two continents, thus imbibing the specifics of two great cultures. All this results in a treat for tourists who are on a culture and arts holiday in Turkey. The culture capital of Turkey is Istanbul. For culture, art and history buffs, Istanbul is a treasure chest. Art galleries are great places to follow Turkish modern art - cultural centers offer gorgeous exhibitions of artists from abroad and are not to be forgotten. Concert halls have regular performances during the season for music lovers. Cultural festivals are organized throughout the year, showcasing Turkey’s cultural side. The museums and palaces in Istanbul are a special treat for those on a culture and arts holiday in Turkey. The St. Sophia Museum, the Kariye Museum, the Blue Mosque and the Topkapi Palace Museum are a few examples of Turkey’s beautiful culture and art. Turkey scores 7 on 10 as a destination for a culture and art holiday.

Disabled Needs

Disabled Needs in Turkey

Turkey is not very well equipped as a destination for a holiday for disabled in Turkey, compared to other European countries. Facilities for disabled are still in their infancy and much more development is required to make it a disabled friendly country. From an accommodation point of view, hotels do provide specialized accommodation for a holiday for disabled in Turkey but make enquiries before hand. Many tour companies organize special tours for disabled people in Turkey and these are perhaps the best option for tourists on a holiday for disabled in Turkey. From accommodation, transport, meals and sightseeing, everything is taken care of as per the traveler’s requirements and needs. Individual travel is not recommended. If you are traveling in a group or with a companion it will be easier. Public transport is not disabled friendly as yet. A few of the newer buses accommodate people with disabilities but majority of the transport in Turkey is not equipped. Taxis or rented cars are you r best option to travel around in. most museums and palaces have easy entrances and are not a problem for disabled people to tour, but some of the archaeological sites and ruins are inaccessible for disabled travelers. Turkey scores 4 on 10 as a destination for a disabled friendly holiday.

Family Holiday

Family Holiday in Turkey

For family holiday in Turkey, there are lots of options in terms of activities for the entire family. Istanbul is the culture capital of Turkey and a family holiday is all about sightseeing, shopping and indulging in some authentic Turkish food. For children, it can be quite a learning experience. The St. Sophia Museum which was once a church, then a mosque, and later turned into a museum, oozes rich Turkish history and culture. With some stunning architecture and artifacts, this museum is a highlight of Istanbul .The Topkapi Palace is another interesting place for the entire family. If you are looking for something more adventurous while on your family holiday in Turkey head to Bodrum, home to some of the best water sports in Turkey. A major hit for the entire family, Bodrum is filled with activities for everyone from jet skiing, snorkeling, fishing, swimming, parasailing, canoeing and lots more. If you want to relax and soak in the sun, the beaches are just for you. For a healthy holiday experience head to Pamukkale which is an unusual natural and historic site, and often referred to as the 8th wonder of the World by Turkish people. During your family holiday in Turkey, head to Izmir to the Aqua Fantasy Resort, Turkey's biggest themed water park, comprising 100,000 sq m of slides, wave pools, waterfalls and rides, near Selcuk on Turkey's Mediterranean coast. It is a Mecca for water babies and thrill seekers - the wave pools feature ten different kinds of waves and the slides have such evocative names as Anaconda, Black Thunder and Screamer. Turkey scores 8 on 10 as a destination for a family holiday.

Gay and Lesbian

Gay and Lesbian in Turkey

Although Turkey is an Islamic country, being straddled between two cultures has made it more accepting to homosexuality. Gay and lesbian holidays in Turkey are quite common now, although respect for the local culture is expected from visiting tourists. Turkey is the only Muslim country where homosexuality is not illegal. This makes Turkish gay life unique in the world. Gay culture in Turkey is slightly different from the rest of the European countries, and gay holidayers should familiarize themselves to the different surroundings. Istanbul has a thriving gay community, and is the center of gay life in Turkey, concentrated mainly in the Pera and Taksim districts of the city. There are many modern or traditional gay clubs, bars, saunas and hamams near the Taksim/Beyoglu area. There are also many clubs for transvestites and transsexuals in Taksim district. Indeed, the gay life of Istanbul is very colorful and vibrant. The first gay and lesbian organization of Turkey is also in Istanbul. If you want to spend a gay and lesbian holiday in Turkey’s other cities, many tour packages are available. Bodrum is popular with the gay community as well. Turkey scores 5 on 10 as a gay and lesbian holiday destination.

Hen Destination

Hen Destination in Turkey

For a fun Hen holiday, Turkey is a popular hen destination. In recent years Turkey has become quite a hotspot for hen holiday goers who are drawn to the warm weather, great golf resorts, beautiful beaches and amazing atmosphere. While the European beauty is a hot location for sun worshippers it is also a superb spot for sailing. An interesting way to spend a hen holiday in turkey before your big day is cruising the Turkish waters, while seeing all the top sites, on a sailing holiday – there is no better way to explore Turkey than exploring its 5, 000 miles of coastline. For stag holidays in Turkey head to Istanbul’s party district which is frequented by stags before they take their final vows. Turkeys scores 5 on 10 as a hen and stag holiday destination.

Honeymoon in Turkey

Turkey is an interesting country to spend your honeymoon in. While on your honeymoon in Turkey, you have a number of options to choose from, depending on the type of honeymoon you and your partner are planning. With a rich culture and historical background, Istanbul, Cappadocia, Anatolia and Ankara offer you a wonderful historical and cultural experience. For a relaxed honeymoon in Turkey, head to any of the country’s popular beaches for your special holiday. Patara, Oludeniz, Olympus, Side, Alanya, Kemer, Bodrum, Pamucak and Calis are the most popular beaches where you can spend your honeymoon in Turkey. Your honeymoon in Turkey can also be spent on a nice romantic cruise. If you want something smaller then book yourself onto a chartered yatch, with a small crew, and sail into the turquoise waters with your loved one. Many tour operators offer special packages for a honeymoon in Turkey. If you want everything taken care of without any hassle of bookings, transport, etc, book yourself in with one of these packages. Turkey scores 6 on 10 as a honeymoon destination.

Naturism in Turkey

Being a conservative country, naturism is illegal in Turkey.

Party Holiday - Singles Life

Party Holiday - Singles Life in Turkey

Turkey was never known as a partying destination in previous years, but now it has become one of the most interesting destinations for a partying holiday. Istanbul is the nightlife capital of Turkey. Istanbul is an international, cosmopolitan city with a very happening nightlife. For a party holiday in Turkey, Istanbul is the place to be in. The options for dancing, drinking and enjoying live entertainment are plentiful in this ancient metropolis, often leaving tourists spoilt for choice! From traditional nightlife experiences to the more modern and hip nightclubs, Istanbul has it all. On your party holiday in Turkey make sure you spend an evening or two at the traditional Turkish ‘Meyhanas’ and ‘Birahenes’ which are essentially local drinking holes. For a more cultural experience on your party holiday in Turkey, head to one of the Eastern Clubs where you will get to see belly dancers and their troupes performing traditional dances. Istanbul is home to a number of classic rock bars, discos, cover band bars and even rave, grunge, alternative and techno clubs. Most drinking and dancing clubs in Istanbul are open till the wee hours of the morning and guarantee you a fun filled party holiday in Turkey. Izmir, Kusadasi and Ankara are other Turkish cities where the nightlife is quite interesting. Turkey scores 7 on 10 as a party holiday destination.

Safari Activity Holiday in Turkey

A safari holiday in Turkey takes tourists to the many wildlife parks in the country. Jeep safari holidays in Turkey are popular. The Koprulu Canyon National Park in the Antalya province of Turkey is popular for jeep safaris in Turkey. The Marmaris National Park in the Mugla province of Turkey is another popular safari location. Other wildlife parks and sanctuaries where safaris in Turkey take place include Goreme National Park in the Neveshir province, the Kovada Lake National Park, the Marmaris National Park, the Aslantas National Park and the Beysehir Lake National Park, among others. Turkey scores 3 on 10 as a safari holiday destination.

Golf Activity Holiday in Turkey

A golf holiday in Turkey will take you to the vast expanses of Belek in Antalya which is a golf holiday destination of international repute. With a number of golf clubs, resorts and courses on offer, perfect weather, tourists have plenty to choose from! The golf courses designed by some of the best names in the Golf business have given Turkey serious international golfing credibility, and make sure that a golf holiday in Turkey will be an amazing value experience. Some of the regions popular resorts for a golf holiday in turkey include the Gloria Golf Resort which is home to 2 championship courses, the Sueno Golf Resort, the Sirene Golf Resort and Hotel, the Gloria Verde Resort, the National Golf Club and the Sultan Course among a host of others. A number of tour operators have custom designed golf holiday packages in Turkey. Completely designed according to the tourists need s and wants, these tours are worthwhile. Turkey scores 7 on 10 as a golf holiday destination.

Skiing - Snow Boarding in Turkey

Turkey experiences an extremely cold winter, making it perfect for a skiing holiday in Turkey. Turkey has a number of winter sports resorts, mostly located in forested and hilly areas. There are ski centers in these areas which provide excellent skiing holidays in Turkey. Uludag in Bursa is situated at a 1900metre elevation and is accessible by road or cable car. A wide range of accommodation is available in hotels, in family chalets and ski facilities. At the resort there are chair-lifts, three ski-lifts, slalom and giant slalom courses, beginner's slopes and small hospitals. Skis, equipment, and instructors are available for hire. Saklikent in Antalya is situated in the Beydag Mountain Range at a height of 2000m. There is ample accommodation and excellent skiing facilities. January to April is the best time to visit. Erzurum is another interesting place for a skiing holiday in Turkey. Located at an altitude of 3100m it has the best snow conditions in the country, and skiing here is usually tough and best suited for ski competitions. Turkey scores 8 on 10 as a skiing holiday destination.

Sailing Activity Holiday

Sailing Activity Holiday in Turkey

The country’s extensive coastline makes for a exciting sailing holiday in Turkey. With a highly indented coastline filled with gulfs and bays, a sailing holiday in Turkey allows for exploring marine life as well. The south west coast offers the best locations for a sailing holiday in Turkey. The stretch of coastline from Izmir via Kusadasi, Bodrum, Marmaris, Fethiye and Kas to Antalya is an ideal cruising ground. For a sailing holiday in Turkey, chartered yachts are the most common option. The Carian Coast of Bodrum to Marmaris is the most popular sailing ground. If you want to independently charter a yatch or a boat and take it out sailing, there are plenty of options. Crewed charters are also available for a sailing holiday in Turkey. The country scores 7 on 10 as a sailing holiday destination.

Scuba Diving Activity Holiday in Turkey

Adventure water sports are still in its infancy in Turkey, but slowly becoming more and more popular and advanced. Blessed with a terrific coastline and underwater life, a scuba diving holiday in Turkey is a fun way to explore these natural surroundings. Turkey’s weather is especially inviting for a scuba diving holiday in Turkey. The scuba diving season is from April to October so book your scuba diving holiday in Turkey between these months. Turkey offers a wide variety of scuba diving options including reef diving, wall diving, cavern diving and wreck diving. Scuba diving schools operate at most big resorts so you can get trained in scuba diving if you aren’t already a scuba diver. The southern coast of Turkey, off the Mediterranean and Aegean seas is popular for scuba diving in Turkey. There are a number of resorts in areas of Bodrum, Antalya, Kas, Marmara, Fethiye, Gallipoli and Alanya. The standard of scuba diving centers conforms to international standards with PADI certified scuba diving centers at most tourist resorts in Turkey. As a destination for a scuba diving holiday, Turkey scores 7 on 10.

Hiking Activity Holiday

Hiking Activity Holiday in Turkey

With some beautifully scenic hiking trails, a hiking holiday in Turkey is a must. Some popular locations in the Mediterranean region for a hiking holiday in Turkey include Akdaglar, Beydaglari, Bakirdaglari, Geyik mountains and Goksu river area, the high plateaus of Anamur and the mountain ranges of Mut district, among other areas. Plateau hiking is common in Turkey. The plateaus of Turkey are unique with meadows and large grasslands, its flora, plenty of water and natural beauty, summing up to a perfect hiking holiday in Turkey. The Lycian Way hiking trail is one of the most popular trails in the world. It is a 500km walk from Fethiye to Antalya with lots of lodging and dining options on the way. The hike is difficult, with the easier portions being near Fethiye and Oludeniz. A number of tour companies organize hiking holidays in Turkey along the better known trails in the country. Turkey scores 7 on 10 as a hiking holiday destination.

Cycling Activity Holiday

Cycling Activity Holiday in Turkey

Turkey is an interesting country to enjoy a cycling holiday in. surrounded with natural beauty and ancient archaeological relics and monuments, there is lots to discover and explore on a cycling holiday in Turkey. With the sparkling clear blue Aegean Sea as company, tourists get a chance to appreciate the drama of the views with every turn of the road throughout, on a cycling holiday in Turkey. A cycling holiday in Turkey offers exciting riding and caters to all abilities. The easier off road rides follow tracks lined with citrus groves to quaint old villages. Venturing further inland, cycling in Turkey opens up challenging climbs into pine forests which lead to traditional Turkish villages and tremendous views over the Greek islands of the Aegean. Excellent off road descents lead back to Ortakent. A cycling holiday in Turkey takes travelers to Teos and Ortakent, especially popular with novice cyclists. Cappadocia is another popular destination for a cycling holiday in Turkey. With an architecture, culture and history unmatched, cycling in this city is a true pleasure. Turkey scores 7 on 10 as a cycling holiday destination.

Shopping Holiday

Shopping Holiday in Turkey

A shopping holiday in Turkey offers a unique experience. With an emphasis of crafts, local handicrafts, carpets, ceramics, antiques, silk, wooden goods and jewelry, a shopping holiday in Turkey will take you to a number of places. From high end malls and markets to traditional bazaars, Turkey has it all, which is why a shopping holiday in Turkey is such a wonderful experience. The fun of a shopping holiday in Turkey is to shop at the local bazaars. Here is where travelers get to experience the charm of these traditional markets. Bargaining is a must and a sort of activity at the bazaars! Shopping at malls and supermarkets have nothing unique to them and are more frequented by the locals. But the local markets are the treasure troves where you can shop for nearly any and everything possible. Turkey is also popular as a destination for cheap knock-offs. Popular clothing brands are replicated just like the originals and sold for hardly another! Sometimes you might manage to pick up things that pass off as the original itself! Turkey is famous for its carpets, and Anatolia is the place to head to for buying carpets. For leather goods and apparel, Istanbul is the city. While in Istanbul visit the Kapali Carsi Bazaar on your shopping holiday in Turkey. Jewelry, carpets and antiques are available at this market and you can get them for reasonable prices. Turkey scores 7 on 10 as a shopping holiday destination.

Well-being and Spa in Turkey

Turkey is known to have some of the best spa resorts in the world and a spa holiday in Turkey will keep you coming back for more! Spa holidays in Turkey specialize in integrating native spa techniques that have been applied through the ages, and there are a number of spa techniques to suit individual needs. Thermal spas are popular in Turkey owing to their therapeutic qualities. Natural thermal spas are found all over Turkey. The Pammukale spa is famous since ancient times. The place is worth visiting on your spa holiday in Turkey, not only for the spa but also for the spectacular natural beauty. It has baths and open pools set in the White Mountain side. The waters here are used for both drinking and bathing. Bursa is also famous for one of the ancient spas and the thermal baths built by the Ottomans. Today these domed baths still exist in Hotel Karavansray in the Cekirge district of Bursa. A unique thermal spa in the whole of Central Anatolia is the Kangal Hot Springs. You must visit this spa for the sheer experience if not for the magical cure it provides for the various diseases on your spa holiday in Turkey. The Koycegiz Lake is a place of great scenic beauty and a popular destination since early times. This spa, famous for its natural springs and mud baths, is conveniently located near the Dalman airport and close to Marmaris and Fethiye. Most resorts have their own spa facilities and the choice is unlimited. Turkey scores 8 on 10 as a spa holiday destination.

Wine Tasting Holiday in Turkey

A wine tasting holiday in Turkey takes tourists to the heart of Anatolia which is the center of wine production in the country. The main wine production centers are Ankara, Goreme and Yozgat in mid-Anatolia; Tekirdag, Murefte. Sarkoy, Marmara Island and Avsa Island in the Marmara Region; Bozcaada, Izmir, Sirince, Denizli, Guney and Sal in the Aegean Region. In Anatolia, which is known as the land of wine, it is inexpensive and delicious. On a wine tasting holiday in Turkey, tourists can tour the regions that grow vineries and witness the making of the wine. Many tour operators organize wine tasting holidays in Turkey. Packages include touring of several vineries in the Anatolia and Cappadocia region. Turkey scores 6 on 10 as a wine tasting holiday destination.

Winter Sun

Winter Sun in Turkey

A winter holiday in Turkey takes tourists to the picturesque mountains of the country. Popular winter holiday activities in Turkey include snow boarding and snow skiing. There are several resorts that cater to tourists on a winter holiday in Turkey. A winter holiday in Turkey also attracts tourists to the country’s beaches. Sightseeing, hiking, trekking and camping are activities taken up by a number of tourists on a winter holiday in Turkey. The country’s archaeological ruins attract a number of tourists during the winter months as well. It’s not hot at all and exploring endlessly doesn’t tire you out! Turkey scores 6 on 10 as a winter holiday destination.