Linking Europe and the Middle East, suspended between the new and the ancient, Turkey typifies an amalgamation of east and west. Modern city boutiques and exotic bazaars clamour for customers, the weekly tolling of church bells interrupts the daily call of the muezzin, and Roman ruins and the beginnings of Christianity compete for attention with the history of the Ottoman Empire and modern secularity.
The different regions of Turkey offer an assortment of landscapes, activities and characters. No matter travellers' inclinations, be it history or archaeology, sun worship, sailing, or cities, there is something on offer for everyone. Istanbul, with one part in Europe and the other in Oriental Asia, is a fascinating city with its frenzied market places, imperial residences and minarets, and lively ambience of contemporary art and musical entertainment.
Out of the city, Cappadocia in Central Turkey offers an astounding landscape of eroded volcanic rock cones and fairy chimneys, remarkable subterranean cities and rock-hewn houses that merge harmoniously with the ochre-coloured landscape. Further south, the 'Turquoise Coast' is a haven for boat cruises. Here visitors can enjoy a variety of water sports, sunbathe on golden sands, or explore the wonderful ancient cities of Troy and Ephesus along the shores of the Aegean Sea.
Most visitors concentrate on Western Turkey, with its picturesque seaside resorts along the Aegean and Mediterranean coasts, scenic and recreational attractions, well-preserved archaeological sites and fascinating museums that bring its rich history to life. Wherever one ventures in Turkey there is certain to be a warm welcome and traditional hospitality, making this a deeply satisfying corner of the world in which to travel.
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