Turkey straddles Europe and Asia. Turkey is now known officially as the Republic of Turkiye. Its capital city is Ankara. It is home to 19 UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The country has a population of 84 million people.

The currency of the country is the Turkish Lira. The most commonly spoken language is Turkish.

Turkey has a fascinating history, stunning beaches, delicious cuisine, ski resorts, and an amazing culture. Turkey is a very popular tourist destination. The country is very huge. Some parts of the country are traditional while others are modernized and westernized.

Travel Tips for First-Time Visitors

What to Wear and What to Pack

Turkey is a conservative Muslim country. You should dress conservatively. You should pack light cotton clothes.

When to Visit

The best months to visit are between April and May and September and October. The weather is mild during these months. You will be able to explore the cities and the outdoor ruins. There are fewer crowds.


Turkish cuisine is famous worldwide. The most popular dishes are menemen (scrambled eggs and sautéed vegetables), dolma (stuffed vine leaves), doner kebab, pide (similar to pizza), kofte (Turkish meatballs), and kuzu tandir (slow-cooked lamb and rice). Kahvalti is the famous Turkish breakfast. Turkish coffee is rich, dark, and spiced with cardamon. It is excellent and refreshing.

If you love fast food there are Starbucks, Mcdonald’s, Burger King, and KFC restaurants in large cities and towns.


Mid-level accommodation in Turkey will cost you around $15 per night. Some hostels offer free breakfast. WiFi is available in some hostels.


Buses are a cheap and convenient mode of transport. You can purchase the prepaid Istanbul Card to pay for public transport.

Taxis have a base fare of around $1 and thereafter an extra dollar per kilometer.

Things to do in Turkey

Explore Istanbul

It is a very beautiful and ancient city. It straddles Europe and Asia. The city is huge and it requires time to explore.

Visit the Blue Mosque

The Blue Mosque in Sultanahmet is the most famous. Admission is free.

Go Shopping

The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul’s Old City is famous worldwide for its shops. It has over 4000 shops that specialize in gold, leather, clothes, and souvenirs. The most popular products are carpets, jewelry, and kilims.

Visit the Egyptian Spice Bazaar

It is located in Eminonu. You can buy a variety of spices at very affordable prices.

Visit Hagia Sophia (Aya Sofya) Mosque

It is considered one of the most beautiful buildings in the world. It was built by Byzantine Emperor Justinian in 537 CE. It has remained the world’s largest church for over 1000 years.

Explore the Ruins of Ephesus

The history of the city can be traced back to the 10th century BCE. The Library of Celsus and the Great Theater are popular attractions.

Explore Cappadocia

The rock valleys of Cappadocia are surreal. The Cliff ridges and hill crests have been formed over several millennia. Cappadocia’s villages are hewn onto the sides of the hills. They have boutique hotels where you can stay as you explore.

You can hike or opt to sightsee via a hot air balloon.

Visit Topkapı Palace

During the 15th and 16th centuries, the sultans of the Ottoman era created an empire that extended into Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

The interiors of the palace are decorated lavishly with jewels. The Imperial Council building has a world-class collection of paintings. The gardens are open to the public.

Explore Pamukkale

It is one of the most famous natural wonders in Turkey. White travertine terraces of Pamukkale cascade down the slope amidst the green landscape.

The ancient ruins of Greco-Roman Hierapolis are scattered across the summit of the hill. You can swim in the mineral-rich waters.

Explore Antalya

The Antalya Museum is famous and is considered one of the country’s best. It has a spectacular collection of Hellenistic and Roman marble. The cobblestone alleyways of the town are amazing to explore.

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