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Turkey is a paradise of sun, sea, mountains, and lakes that offers the vacationer a complete change from the stress and routine of everyday life. From April to October, most places in Turkey have an ideal climate that is perfect for relaxing on sandy beaches or enjoying the tranquility of mountains and lakes.
Turkey also has a magnificent past, and is a land full of historic treasures from 13 successive civilizations spanning 10,000 years. Even if you spend only a short time in Turkey, you can see a lot of this great heritage.
There is no doubt that one visit will not be enough, and you will want to come back again and again as you discover one extraordinary place after another.
All of them, no matter how different, have one thing in common: the friendly and hospitable people of this unique country.
TURKEY IN BRIEF
Official Name: The Republic of Turkey (Turkiye Cumhuriyeti)
Founder: Mustafa Kemal ATATURK (1881-1938)
Population: 67.8 million (as of 2000)
Language: Turkish (uses Latin Alphabet)
Currency: New Turkish Lira (YTL) as of 01/01/2005
1YTL = 1,000,000 TL (Turkish Lira)
Location: Eastern Mediterranean. Located on two contitents Europe and Asia. The European part of Turkey is called Thrace, while the Asian part is called Anatolia or Asia Minor.
Area: 814 578 Km2 (314 500 square miles)
% 3 on the European continent
% 97 on the Asian continent
Istanbul 10.0 million
Ankara 4.0 million
Izmir 3.3 million
Konya 2.2 million
Bursa 2.1 million
Adana 1.8 million
Religion: 99 percent of the population is Muslim. Turkey is a secular state that assures complete freedom of worship to non-Muslims.
National Anthem: Istiklal Marsi
Lyrics by: Mehmet Akif Ersoy
Adopted as Turkey's National Anthem on March 12, 1921
Government: Turkey is democratic, secular and social state governed by the rule of law; committed to the nationalism of Ataturk and based on the principle of the separation of powers;
Legislative Power: The Turkish Grand National Assembly
Executive Power: President and the Council of Ministers.
Judicial Power: Independent courts and supreme judiciary organs.
Coastline: 8333 Km. (5000 miles)
Turkey is surrounded by sea on three sides, by the Black Sea in the north, the Mediterranean in the south and the Aegean Sea in the west. In the northwest there is also an important internal sea, the Sea of Marmara, between the straits of the Dardanelles and the Bosphorus.
Geographical Regions: Turkey has 80 administrative provinces and seven geographical regions. The first four of the seven regions are given the names of the seas which are adjacent to them.
- Black Sea Region
- Marmara Region
- Aegean Region
- Mediterranean Region
The other three regions are named in accordance with their location in the whole of Anatolia.
- Central Anatolia Region
- Eastern Anatolia Region
- Southeastern Anatolia Region
Famous Landmarks: Ayasofya Museum, Topkapi Palace, Blue Mosque, Dolmabahce Palace, ancient City of Troy, Ephesus, Aphrodisias, Pergamon, Pamukkale, Goreme-Cappadocia, Mt.Nemrut, Safranbolu.
Other Useful Information
Time: Local time is equal to GMT + 2 hours. Same time zone all over the country (seven hours ahead of U.S. eastern standard time).
Electricity: 220 volts a.c. throughout Turkey
Weights and Measures: Metric and Kilo system
WHEN TO VISIT
Marmara, Aegean, and Mediterranean coasts: These coasts have a typical Mediterranean climate with hot summers and mild winters.
The swimming season becomes shorter the further north one goes: Marmara and North Aegean - June to September; South Aegean and Mediterranean - April to October.
Black Sea Coast: Warm summers, mild winters, and relatively high rainfall.
Central Anatolia: Steppe climate with hot, dry summers; cold winters.
Eastern Anatolia: Long snowy cold winters with mild summers.
Southeast Anatolia: Hot summer with mild, rainy winters.
WHAT TO WEAR
Marmara, Aegean and Mediterranean coasts: Light, cotton summer clothing and cardigans for evening.
Black Sea, Central and Eastern Anatolia: Summer wear, warmer clothing should be taken for cool evenings at high altitudes.
-Comfortable shoes are necessary for visiting archeological and historical sites.
-Sun hats and sunglasses are advisable in the summer.
-Headscarves should be brought by women for visiting mosques.