Ask most people to name their top holiday destinations in Turkey and they’ll probably come back with Istanbul, Bodrum and Izmir. But do a little research, and you’ll find that Turkey is a country filled with amazing travel destinations, from secluded fishing villages or historical ruins to unique geographical formations. Here are just five to visit next time you’re in the country.
1. Hierapolis & Pamukkale
The ancient spa city of Hierapolis was founded in 190 BC and today is home to extensive ruins that are open to wandering tourists. While visiting Hierapolis, a tour of the neighbouring limestone cascades at Pamukkale is a must. These stunning, snow white shelves were formed over thousands of years by mineral-rich water flowing from the hot springs beneath, and the warm pools are open for bathing.
2. Marmaris Castle & Museum
Marmaris is famous for being a party town popular with lively young tourists, but it’s also home to its fair share of culture and history. Head up the hills of the city, out of the more modern parts of town, and you’ll come to Marmaris Castle. Built by Suleiman the Magnificent in the 16thcentury, the fortification sits on the site of an ancient fortress. Today, the castle is open to tourists and home to a small museum stocked with some stunning artefacts.
Photo: Marmaris Castle by Pot Noodle used under Creative Commons license
3. Oludeniz and Kayakoy
Oludeniz is a small beach resort on Turkey’s Turquoise Coast, famous for its stunning blue lagoon and well-known amongst water sports enthusiasts for its excellent paragliding. For an unusual day trip, head ten kilometres out of the city to the ghost town of Kayakoy. Inhabited until the 1920s, the abandoned village is home to hundreds of deserted houses and buildings, including two Greek Orthodox churches, and its narrow stone streets provide the perfect place for a day’s wandering.
4. Avanos Hair Museum
If you’re seeking a really unusual tourist experience, a visit to the hair museum in Avanos, Cappadocia is a must. Though the museum was originally famous for its pottery, it is now home to around 16,000 locks of hair, gifted by female visitors over the past few decades. Possibly a little creepy, but certainly a unique way to spend a few hours!
The town of Goreme is famous for its globally famous alien landscapes including fairy chimneys and magical cave dwellings. Spend a couple of days here for the perfect break from sunbathing and bar-hopping. Make sure to tour the Open-Air Museum and book yourself a night in one of the village’s stunning boutique cave hotels.
Photo: Göreme valley and Cappadocia/Pixabay.com
There are so many brilliant Turkey holidays to choose from, and so many great deals available at the moment. Just make sure you give yourself time to explore some of the more secluded and unusual destinations this beautiful country has to offer.