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A COUNTRY FULL OF HIDDEN GEMS

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HOMELAND OF MANY CIVILISATIONS

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SCENIC LANDSCAPES

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UNFORGETTABLE NATURE

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PICTURESQUE HISTORICAL TOWNS

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CRYSTAL CLEAR BLUE WATERS

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FABULOUS PALACES

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GREAT MOSQUES

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STUNNING SITUATED MONASTRIES

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IMPORTANT CHURCHES

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RICH OF HISTORICAL SITES

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THE FINEST MUSEUMS

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UNIQUE NATURE WONDERS

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WINTER WONDERLANDS

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POWERFUL FORTRESSES

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TRAVELLING IN SMALL GUIDED GROUPS

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SLEEPING IN HIGHLY RECOMMENDED HOTELS

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ON THE ROAD

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IN THE AIR

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ON THE WATER

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ON THE TRACK

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ON TOP OF MOUNTAINS

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BENEATH THE EARTH

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TURKISH HOSPITALITY WELCOMES YOU

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WHEN YOU WISH, WHERE YOU WANT AND HOW YOU GO WITH ETD-PRIVATE

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PRIVATE TOURS

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AN INTRODUCTION TO TURKEY

Turkey, as a tourist destination, offers a mixture of Western and Asian influences in the culture, architecture and cuisine, as well as the great historic sites in combination with a beautiful natural environment. Geographically, the country is located in Western Asia and Southern Europe, which had an impact on its culture that combines Western features with those of the East.

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MARMARA REGION

The Marmara region is the home of the famous city of Istanbul, with all its magnificence and signs from its far-reaching past. It has such a location that it constitutes not only a city of history, but also one of natural beauty beyond example. Extending on the two sides of the Bosphorus bordered by green groves, it also possesses beautiful shores along the internal Marmara Sea. Facing the city there exists small, pretty islands, adorning this big sea, lying in the middle of the region. The sea features the land in that the climatic characteristics of the Black Sea influencing the north of it, is separated from the typical Mediterranean climate prevailing in its south. Rainfall is high enough to facilitate growing a variety of fruits, while snowfall enlivens the winter holidays.

Uludag, one of the main peaks of Turkey, is the most prominent mountain in this region, and one of the most popular ski-resorts with every kind of convenience provided. At the foot of Mount Uludag, “Green” Bursa is located, with its dense forests covering the mountains and wide meadows, which give it its title. It is another center of historical importance, its rich past being kept alive in its mosques and tombs of wonderful architectural design. Ancient Iznik (Nicea) is the same, as is the charming city of Edirne which is on Thrace, the European side of Turkey.

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AEGEAN REGION

Dotted with idyllic fishing harbors, popular holiday villages and the remains of ancient civilizations attesting to the inheritance of more than 5,000 years of history, culture and mythology, this region offers a holiday with something for everyone – nature lovers, sun worshippers, photographers, sports enthusiasts, sailors and archaeologists. Along the whole length of the coast, accommodations to suit every taste and price range can be found.

The Aegean coastal plain enjoys an exceptionally mild climate, with soft, verdant springs, hot summers, sunny autumns and warm winters marked by occasional showers. Aegean region has perpendicular mountains to its shores and many valleys between them, thus permitting the sea climate reach inner parts of the region, although some of the provinces inland show also characteristics of Continental climate. For sunbathing and water sports, the summer months are ideal; for exploring the ancient ruins and picturesque countryside, spring and autumn are the most inviting months. The Aegean provides the perfect escape from the rigors of a northern winter: even in January and February, the days are sunny and pleasant.

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MEDITERRANEAN REGEON

West and Mid-Taurus mountains run parallel to the coastline. Because of high and steep mountains, the valleys between the sea and mountain range are very narrow, the width varies between 120-180 kilometres (75-112 miles). There are some important rivers rising especially during the Spring when the snow is melting, and many lakes on the highlands with great nature. The population is concentrated especially at the locations suitable for agriculture, tourism, industry and commerce.

The plains of this region are rich in agricultural resources. Fertile soils and a warm Mediterranean climate make the area ideal for growing citrus fruits and grapes, cereals and, in irrigated areas, rice and cotton. Summers are hot, and droughts are not uncommon. Other industrial and agricultural products of the area are wheat, barley, tobacco, greenhouses and carpet weaving, aluminum and steel. 80% of total of Turkey’s oranges and mandarins are grown here, meanwhile bananas are specific only to this region.
The plains around Adana have largely reclaimed flood lands. In the western part of the region, rivers have not cut valleys to the sea; movement inland, therefore, is restricted. The backland is mainly karst and rises sharply from the coast to elevations of up to 2,800 meters (9,200 feet). There are few major cities along this coast, but the triangular plain of Antalya is extensive enough to support the rapidly growing city and port of the same name, which is an important trading center.

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BLACK SEA REGION

The northern Anatolian region along the Black Sea occupies 18% of the total area of Turkey with its 141.000 square kilometers (54.440 square miles) of land. This northern coastal region has a steep and rocky coast, and rivers cascade through gorges of the coastal ranges.

Black sea, a few of the large rivers cutting back through the Pontus Mountains (Dogu Karadeniz Daglari) have tributaries that flow in broad, elevated basins. Access inland from the coast is limited to a few narrow valleys and as a result, the coast has always been isolated from the interior. The population and cities are concentrated along the coastline.

The black sea region is well known for its greenery and is visited by many domestic and for the last few years by international tourism.
The region produces Turkey tea and hazelnuts which is Turkey’s biggest export around the world.

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CENTRAL ANATOLIAN REGION

Central Anatolia although termed a plateau, this region is actually quite diverse. Stretching inland from the Aegean, it occupies the area between the two zones of folded mountains, extending east to the point where the two mountain ranges converge.

The plateau-like, arid highlands of Anatolia are considered the heartland of the country. Akin to the steppes of Russia, the region varies in altitude from 600 to 1,200 meters (2,000 – 4,000 feet) west to east, averaging 500 meters (1,640 feet) in elevation. The two largest basins on the plateau are the Konya Ovasi and the basin occupied by Tuz Gölü (Salt Lake). Both are characterized by inland drainage. Wooded areas are confined to the northwest and northeast, and cultivation is restricted to the areas surrounding the neighbouring rivers where the valleys are sufficiently wide. Irrigation is practiced wherever water is available; the deeply entrenched river courses make it difficult to raise water to the surrounding agricultural land, however. For the most part, the region is bare and monotonous and is used for grazing.

All areas in Central Anatolia
Rainfall is limited and in Ankara amounts to less than 25 centimetres (10 inches) annually. Wheat and barley are the most important crops, but the yields are irregular, and crops fail in years of drought. 1/3 of the total wheat of Turkey comes from this region. Other important crops in the region are potatoes, beans, chickpeas and lentils.

Stock raising also is important, but overgrazing has caused soil erosion in the plateau, and during the frequent summer dust storms a fine yellow powder blows across the plains. In bad years, stock losses are severe, and locusts occasionally ravage the eastern area in April and May. An area of extreme heat and virtually no rainfall in summer, the Anatolian plateau Continental climate is cold in winter and receives heavy, lasting snows. Villages may be isolated by severe snowstorms.

Carpet weaving is another important income for small villagers, especially in Cappadocia and Konya.

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EASTERN REGION

Making up the mountainous eastern realms of the country, Eastern Anatolia is full of dramatic scenery; remote plateaus and steep valleys lie between its towering peaks, with ancient castles, churches, and monasteries hidden away amongst its harsh, uninviting terrain.

Due to its proximity to both Armenia and Georgia, many of its monuments and archaeological sites derive from these two ancient civilizations. Around the enormous Lake Van and the southeast of the region, you’ll find that people mostly speak Kurdish.

While Erzerum is the largest city and the gateway to the region, there are lots more interesting places to visit in Eastern Anatolia. Elazig and Darende are both located in stunning settings, with fascinating historical sights and beautiful nature all around them. The region also offers some fantastic hiking and climbing opportunities, with Mount Ararat the most popular place to adventure into the wild.

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SOUTHEASTERN REGION

It's a shame that a few tourists venture to this area because of the idea that it sits on the border with Syria, yet it makes for exciting exploration because the culture is entirely different from the west. Don’t be surprised to be sitting on a bus and hear Turkish, Kurdish or Arabic spoken. As more of a conservative and landlocked area, forget about beaches and swimwear. Prominent places include old Mardin, famed for its stone architecture, Gaziantep the king of Baklava and pistachios, and Sanliurfa, home to Balikligol, where ancient texts say Nimrud threw Abraham into the fire. Two notable rivers include the Tigris basin and the Euphrates. One interesting fact is the southeastern region sits on the edge of the ancient Mesopotamia plains which some texts say was where human civilisation began.