It’s a country that bridges continents, rich in culture, cuisine and history, yet modern in so many ways. From art to science and facts to folklore, there’s so much to Turkey that it can feel overwhelming. In a country this big and vibrant, it can be hard deciding what to do.
Well, you’re in luck! We’ve put together a list of the best ways to spend your time in some of the most exciting and intriguing corners of this vast country. Take a look at our recommendations and start planning your Turkish adventures now.
Take to the skies in a hot air balloon above Cappadocia
The ancient housing of Cappadocia is little more than homes ingeniously hewn from rocks, complete with windows and doors.
The rolling volcanic mountain formations surrounding the area give it a deeply ethereal feel, but the best way to enjoy Cappadocia is by air.
To do that, you’ll need to book a hot air balloon ride. This is an amazing experience, especially as you fly over the mythical fairy chimneys of the realm. Don’t be fooled though, this isn’t a fantasy, in fact it’s fascinating to learn how the people of ancient Turkey lived.
Experience the thrills of Istanbul
Nobody can deny the cultural impact of Istanbul, also known over the years as Constantinople. From the dome, spires and culture of the Hagia Sofia to the unforgettable lights, smells, sounds and colours of the Grand Bazaar, Istanbul is a part of Turkey that everyone should experience.
The nightclubs and bars of Taksim Square show off the multicultural and metropolitan edge of the city today, while museums, mosques, tours and art galleries highlight its heritage. Don’t forget, Istanbul is a city of two halves, and a boat trip is a great way to travel across the great bay that the city spans, uniting Europe and Asia.
Enjoy the sights of the Blue Cruise
During a beautiful boat journey between Bodrum and Antalya, passengers of the Blue Cruise can visit ancient sites, archaeological discoveries and cosy little villages dotted throughout the Turkish Riviera.
The water is a rich deep blue colour from Patara Beach to Kaputas Cove, which explains the name. The cruise was first enjoyed and named by Turkish writers of days gone by, but today it’s an adventure for all to enjoy.
Eat and drink the Turkish way
Food and drink in Turkey is important to local life and culture – sweet treats like baklava and Turkish delight alongside mezzes and moussakas pretty much sums up traditional Turkish flavours.
As a country that’s always done things its own way, you can expect a lot from Turkey, and Turkish coffee is a great example of this. It’s made without filters, where a sediment of coffee powder on the bottom of the cup is the encouraged way to drink it. That strength in beverages is similarly emphasised in raki, a drink so strong it’s often taken with water to dilute the effects without harming the delicious liquorice flavour. They don’t nickname raki Lion’s Milk for nothing.
Take on the Lycian Way hike
How does a walk through Turkey’s most stunning coastal back-country sound? That’s what you can expect when you take on the 500 kilometres of woodland, rolling fields and seaside strolling of the Lycian Way. With a name that derives from the huge number of ruins and remnants of both Lycian and Roman architecture, you can expect great things from this hike. Although you’re bound to stumble across some Ottoman cultural treasures during your journey.
In fact, Turkey’s ties to history and culture are among its biggest highlights and together with the distinctive experiences we’ve listed here, there are also plenty of theme parks, watersports activities and exploration opportunities to consider.