Spending a few weeks in Turkey over the summer will allow you to explore the best places and relax, eat, drink, shop and be merry. Turkey enjoys a unique geographical position within Europe, with Christian countries to one side and Muslim territories to the other. This gives it a unique culture as well as a combined 2,700 miles of Aegean and Mediterranean coastline.
In the Aegean area, there’s a beautiful coastline of coves and bays and the vibrant resort towns of Marmaris and Bodrum. The dramatic landscapes in this region feature mountains that drop suddenly to sea level and is particularly stunning in the mountainous south-west of Turkey, where the Aegean meets the Mediterranean.
Enjoy the holiday resorts
The tourist industry is booming in the area around Antalya. There are many quality hotels to enjoy and recreational activities like golf to take part in. The rockier coastal area to the south-west Mediterranean and south Aegean are more traditional, with resorts like Bodrum, Dalyan, Gelemis, Kaş, Kalkan retaining their originality. You may be happy to enjoy the sunshine, go swimming and enjoy other water-based activities such as boat and yacht tours. If you’re feeling advanturous you can take part in diving, sea-kayaking and windsurfing.
Turkey is blessed with some fascinating ancient sites and the Aegean and Mediterranean areas are brimming with Greek and Roman ruins, including the famous Ephesus and Troy as well as little-known places such as Arykanda and Sagalassos. You can visit these as part of a tour or under your own steam (e.g. hiring a car). If you like the really rugged scenery and lesser known areas you can head to the area to the east of Ankara, once populated by the Hitties, to marvel at the fortresses and churches near scenic Lake Van. Although far from the coast, these areas are well worth a visit and there’s no charge to go there once you’ve decided on your method of transport.
Enjoy the diversity Turkey has to offer
If you’re staying at a coastal resort, you can visit the hot springs and travertine basins at Pammukale. The stunning lakeland around Eğirdir is a cool alternative to the heat of the sun on the beaches. If you’re feeling energetic you can hike up the Lycian, Carian and St Paul’s trails and benefit from the amazing views as you climb into the mountains. Exploring Turkey is a vast undertaking and although you may be initially drawn to the coast you’ll soon find yourself venturing into the Anatolian landscapes. Here you can see many Byzantine churches cut from the cliffs and incredible volcanic rock features in Cappadocia, where you can even stay in a boutique, cave-themed hotel!
A unique country
Whether you visit Turkey and stay in an exclusive villa or cost-effective guesthouse, hire a private car or take part in organised coach tours, you’ll receive a warm reception and will benefit from experiencing a very special country that doesn’t belong to the West or the East and is totally unique. Don’t forget to take out cheap travel insurance for your Turkish holiday, which should reflect the kinds of activities you’ll be enjoying to the full while you’re there.