This has been my third visit to Turkey however my first to the Antalya region. It won’t be our last!
There are two things that strike me about Turkey, one is the interesting perception of this wonderful country from people who we have told that we are visiting, amongst which has been ‘I haven’t ever considered going’ or ‘Turkey isn’t somewhere I would ever go’!
The second is the actual reality of the country, that in the 21 years since my first visit I have come to know and fall in love with. So, as we wait to board our flight I thought I would send into the ether a list of reasons to visit Turkey, if you are so inclined that is! Happy reading and see you all back in Blighty!
1) No surprise here as I am completely and irrevocably enamoured by food but it’s the food! Of all the places I have travelled, and there have been many, Turkey is stand out one of my faves! The sheer abundance of flavours, colours and aromas constantly delight! I may be slightly biased being Persian and Turkey having so many similar influences to Persian cuisine but I challenge anyone to visit Turkey and leave feeling anything but nourished and full!
2) The cleanliness! Turkey is by far and away one of the cleanest countries I have ever visited. Ask anyone who knows me and they will tell you that I am a clean freak!
3) The weather! One word, beautiful!
4) The history! Turkey never fails to disappoint on this front. With beautiful scenery and the deep blue hues of the Aegean coast, natural calcite wonders such as Pamukkale and ancient structures dating to 800BC (Perge) and Roman amphitheatres this country really has it all. Places to soothe your soul and intrigue your mind in equal measure.
5) Probably the most significant factor and the reason I will be re visiting is the people. The hospitality, warmth and friendliness of the Turkish people never ceases to amaze me. You are greeted with smiles on a packed & hot local bus. Offered free cups of Turkish tea and sweets in a bazaar when the weather is stifling. When haggling over the price of watermelon in a bazaar (20p!) and telling the seller to keep the change and having them refuse to, all the while beaming at my 5 year old devouring it and savouring the super sweet and juicy flavour in the heat.
Turkey is a far cry, in my humble opinion, from the perceptions of people who say they would be reluctant to visit. The Turkey that we experienced is a land of warmth, kindness and great food!
Until next time Turkey. Khodarhofas xx