Turkey is a nation straddling Eastern Europe and western Asia with cultural connections to ancient Greek, Persian, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires. Cosmopolitan Istanbul, on the Bosphorus Strait, is home to the iconic Hagia Sophia, with its soaring dome and Christian mosaics, the massive 17th-century Blue Mosque and the circa-1460 Topkapı Palace, former home of sultans. Ankara is Turkey’s modern capital.
Turkey is a modern country with a captivating blend of antiquity and contemporary and of East and West. Get interesting information about Turkey and read up on our history, culture and art, nature and geography, traditional culinary culture, real Turkish lifestyle and more. All you need to know about Turkey and beyond.
TURKISH CUISINE CULTURE
It is said that three major kinds of cuisine exist in the world; Turkish, Chinese, and French. Fully justifying its reputation, Turkish cuisine is always a pleasant surprise for the visitor. Turkish people are passionate about food; indeed, Turkish cuisine is world renowned for its diversity and flavor, drawing influences from all corners of the former Ottoman Empire, and each region today boasting its own specialties. Generally, food is spicier and richer the further south and east you travel, whilst in the west, olive oil, seafood and vegetable dishes are more prevalent. Food in Turkey is first and foremost a social occasion and always to be enjoyed with gusto. From home cooked meals shared by family and friends to symbolic religious or celebratory feasts and the street theatrics of roadside sellers, food is closely intertwined with the fabric of society.
TURKISH CULTURE AND ART
Turkish culture is unique in the world. Turkey may be the only country that contains every extreme of Eastern and Western culture. Highlights some of the distinct characteristics and qualities of Turkish culture and art. Come and discover the harmony in diversity. Turkish culture reflects this unparalleled cultural richness and diversity, and remains mostly shaped by its deep roots in Middle East, Anatolia and Balkans, the cradle of many civilizations for at least twelve thousand years.
The tradition embodied in the lyrics of this ancient folk song, “The people of Avsar picked up and headed for new lands”, have still being sung today, is what led to the settlement of hundreds of new areas in Turkey. In the Chinese Chronicles, Turks are described as people that lived by following the rains and the pastures with their horses and high wheeled wagons. After they came to Anatolia and abandoned their nomadic wanderings for more settled ways, they embarked on a new journey continuing old traditions within the parameters of a new lifestyle. In this new millennium of the global village where cultural differences seem to be disappearing, the highlands of Turkey offer a refreshing authenticity of ancient tradition which is noticed as soon as it is experienced.
Until 1930 Constantinople and in ancient times Byzantium or Byzantion, with a population of between around 12 million people, Istanbul is the largest city of Turkey and by some counts one of the largest cities in Europe. Istanbul is literally incomparable. No other city bestrides two continents or has been an imperial capital for more than 1,500 years. Founded by the Roman emperor Constantine on the site of the ancient Greek colony of Byzantium, and called Constantinople after him, it became the eastern capital of the Roman Empire and later the capital of the Byzantine Empire. After the Fall of Constantinople in 1453 it became part of and soon capital of the Ottoman Empire. Only on 28th March 1930, was the city officially renamed Istanbul. The old city is mainly located on the Bosphorus strait, which separates Europe from Asia and the Black Sea from the Marmara Sea. However, the modern city is much larger and covers both European and Asian sides of the Bosporus.
Today Bodrum is a picturesque city with a yacht harbor filled with traditional wood-varnished sailboats, charming outdoor cafes and streets bursting with small shops selling carpets, leather ware, jeweler and local artwork. In antiquity, it was the site of ancient Halicarnassus. Under King Mausoleums, the city prospered and in death, the king left the city its most enduring legacy – his majestic tomb, from which we derive the word “mausoleum”. Only its massive foundations remain today but it was the largest tomb ever built by the Greeks and one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Visit the site of the mausoleum The Castle of St. Peter sits high on a rocky peninsula on the site of the original Greek settlement. Its towers rise majestically, dominating the harbour front. This dramatic medieval complex is the next stop. The castle is built of green stones, masonry and marble slabs from the mausoleum, it offers a magnificent view from the ramparts to the town and its picturesque harbour. The castle complex houses an excellent Museum of Underwater Archaeology where the guests will see the remains of the world’s oldest known shipwrecks from along Turkey’s Turquoise Coast.
Welcome to Antalya, the paradise on earth, the pearl city of the Mediterranean, and the Turkish Riviera. Antalya is Turkey’s 9th largest city that stands for professionalism, experience, diversity and quality. With its history, natural beauty and a rich variety of local life style, the city hosts more than 11 million foreign guests, from all over the world on a yearly basis. As the fourth most visited city in the world, Antalya is one of the world’s foremost tourism destinations, offers you a peerless experience. Antalya, pearl of the Mediterranean region, second most charming city in Turkey, one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. Come and become a part of something bigger and magical.
Welcome to beautiful Izmir, the frontier and sunshine city of Turkey. Izmir, with its 8,500 years of history, is gloriously situated on the western edge of Turkey, the bountiful, the fruitful and the beautiful. Izmir, the city of olives, figs and grapes, the land of the natural, organic and fresh. Izmir offers visitors many options for a unique holiday experience. From the iconic Izmir Clock Tower to the breathtaking shoreline and world class beaches, Izmir has got a touch of something for everyone. See it all in this amazing Aegean city. Come to Izmir, experience the beauties.
Welcome to Ankara, the capital city of Turkey. Ankara is Turkey’s beating heart, second largest city, located in the Central Anatolia region and home to the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. The hub of many great civilizations with a history dating back to the Stone Age, Ankara and its landmarks are still of great importance in the present day. Famous for its great museums, parks, honey, Kalecik Karasi grapes and many other cultural and historical assets Ankara welcomes visitors any time of the year. Ankara is the capital of Turkey and itself a historic, beautiful city. From its surrounding lakes to chill atmosphere, Ankara is just there waiting to be discovered.
- Cultural Tours – Turkey has been home to many great civilizations from Neolithic times up to the present. These cultures are like stones of different shapes and sizes all going together to make up a wall, each stone of which represents a civilization. No single stone is necessarily more impressive than another. We offer you the chance to tour this ‘wall’ from its beginning to its end and anything in between. Our specially prepared tour programs will enable you to turn over whichever stones you wish. Some example – The first written peace treaty, the “Kadesh Agreement” was signed between Egypt and the Hittites, an Anatolian civilization – The Troy of Iliad is in Truva, near Canakkale – Two of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World are located in Turkey.
- Religious Turkey – The power of shared belief has been the greatest force forming communities throughout history. People have sought ways to reach God personally and through organized religions. But sometimes, following your religion has been hard and dangerous, forcing people to relocate or hide. Sometimes, people were forced to hide in rock-hewn caves in Cappadocia; sometimes they fled from cruelties and found respite in different lands, like Sephardic Jews who were brought to Istanbul. Some have died on behalf of God, passing their names into immortal history like Eyup El Ensari or St. Euphemia. Would you be keen to learn more about these?
- Heritage Of Turkey – “There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmets for us; they lie side by side here in this country of ours…” Following the footsteps of our ancestors to learn and imagine how they lived helps us to understand our own present and future. Turkey is home to a number of UNESCO World Heritage sites, each of which is steeped in rich heritage.
- Luxury Gulets – We truly know that a relaxing holiday is the best reward after a year spent working hard so we offer a unique luxury leisure experience for your holiday. As your travel organizer, we arrange the most comfortable and full luxury service private gulet for your trip in various routes. For example, The Bodrum–Fethiye route is heavenly with serene nature, crystal clear water, and fine sandy beaches, such as at Oludeniz.
- Gastronomy Tours – One of the specialties of Turkey is to touch and captivate all your senses. An atmosphere of luxury, maybe candle light for ambience, before the ceremony begins with the satisfying pop of cork. Festival begins with the taste of Turkish meze (appetizers), together with spices from Anatolia and olive oil from the Aegean Coast. Some of the experience include » A traditional baklava has at least 40 layers. » In the chicken breast pudding, we really use chicken breasts » As a tradition of Anatolian culture, one extra spoon is always presented in the dining table for unexpected guest of God.
- Traditional Arts Lovers – Drawing portraits was forbidden until the 16th century, which forced artists to use lot of floral and geometrical motifs. These motifs were applied in painting, carving, weaving, inlaying, filigreeing, and embroidery. But there are other artistic areas less well-known, like book binding, jewelry crafting, copper-making, calligraphy, and ebru (paper marbling). During your tours, you can visit these artists, even try out what they do if you would like to. If you have a special interest in any of these arts, let us know and we can design your own Turkish art tour specifically for the art(s) you’re interested in.
- Honeymoon in Turkey – Everyone deserves a perfect honeymoon. After all, this is a ‘once in a lifetime’ experience and so should definitely be unforgettable. We provides more than just arranging private tours, luxury hotels, and private transportations.
- Indulge with Luxury – Luxury means adapting a certain kind of high-end lifestyle. Each aspect of a trip must reflect guests’ own tastes and special interests. You may want to cruise on a private luxury boat on the Bosphorus to watch the city lights in the evening, or perhaps you’d like to fly over the Hagia Sophia to see the magnificent dome by helicopter, or maybe drive through the city in a luxury limousine after a perfect spa treatment. Just let us know!
- Shopping with Style – Turkey always thought as a mosaic regarding its colorful & rich culture. Each region has their own special thing (food, clothes or decorative items) and those things helps to culture stay alive and forwarded to future generations. Hand-made towels weaved in weaving-loom, hand-painted tiles, hand-made copper items, special design jewels, decorative items… Those items are not just buyable things but cultural representatives…