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Uncover the cultural side of Turkey


Planning a Turkey holiday but want to know more about this exciting country? Read on to uncover its cultural side…

From Izmir to Antalya and everywhere in between, Turkey is a captivating country with bags of history and charm that’s ready to impress. But there’s much more to Turkey than its golden beaches and balmy weather.

Want to know more? Let’s uncover the cultural side of Turkey…

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The evil eye

You’ll probably have seen this bright-blue talisman on jewellery, keyrings and clothing before but do you know what it actually means? Locally, it’s known as the ‘Nazar Boncugu’ and used as a symbol to help ward off evil. Turkish people also see it as a bit of a lucky charm so you’ll probably see it on display in many restaurants and shops.

Why not pick up one for yourself in a souvenir shop and bring a bit of good luck back home from your holiday?

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Bustling bazaars

Fancy a spot of retail therapy on your Turkey holiday? Shopping is done a little differently here so get ready to be dazzled by a colourful bazaar. These covered market halls house hundreds and sometimes thousands of individual stalls selling all kinds of goods. From fresh produce and rainbow-coloured spices to handmade leather goods and silver jewellery with precious stones, you can find all sorts here!

Haggling for bargains is the norm so don’t be afraid to barter with the market stall holder to get a better price. If you feel like you’re being ripped off, simply walk away and look elsewhere, there’ll be other stalls to choose from.


Food and drink

The range of delicious Turkish cuisine goes way past the typical Turkish kebabs that we know and love in the UK. Although these are still very much a staple in most restaurants across the country, you’d be missing out if you weren’t to sample some of the other options on the menu.

Take borek for example. This flaky pastry dish can feature savoury or sweet flavours and is the perfect option for lunch or as a side to an evening meal. Try one stuffed with soft white cheese and sprinkled with herbs or opt for the sweet version and enjoy it filled with custard and cinnamon sugar. Yum!

For meat lovers, why not switch up your usual kebap and go for a fragrant lamb kofta instead? These handmade meaty treats are like the Turkish version of meatballs and are perfect served in a pitta bread with salad and a drizzle of spicy sauce.

If you’ve got any room to squeeze in something sweet, you can’t miss out on sampling some traditional Turkish delight. These squidgy sugary cubes come in a whole range of flavours, from fragrant rose to a zesty lemon. You can pick up boxes of Turkish delight for a pretty low price so you can stock up and bring some home for family and friends to try!

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Turkish baths

In need of a bit of TLC on your Turkey holiday? Make a beeline for the nearest Turkish bath! These traditional spa houses offer a huge range of treatments to help you relax and unwind. Some even claim to help ailments and cure disease!

You can explore the pools and rooms at your own pace or book in for a massage and experience the authentic Turkish bath experience. Choose this option and an expert tellak will be on hand to give you a good scrub down with essential oils and aromatherapy creams. Added extras are sometimes also available, including head massages, reflexology and beauty treatments.

Posted: 15th Apr 2020.

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