Top Cities in Turkey

Pocket Guide: Turkey

Home to one of the world’s greatest cities, some of the best food in Europe and a coastline to rival any in the Med, Turkey is a country with a lot to offer. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing beach hotel, a cosmopolitan city break or an action packed outdoor adventure, Turkey will offer an ideal destination within its varied and vibrant areas. What’s more, with a history stretching back thousands of years, there’s plenty for history buffs to explore as well.

Where to Stay in Turkey

Istanbul – Straddling both Europe and Asia, Istanbul has been one of the world’s most important cities for millennia. Book a hotel here and you can explore the city’s bustling markets, stunning buildings and world-class museums, with a vibrant nightlife and fantastic restaurant scene on hand when you are done soaking up the culture.

CappadociaCappadocia’s honeycomb hills, towers of rock and otherworldly appearance have drawn visitors to the region for generations. An extensive network of hiking trails makes it easy to explore the region on foot, while those with a head for heights can enjoy hot air balloon rides over the spectacular landscape.

Bodrum – With its imposing castle, whitewashed streets and sparkling marina, Bodrum is one of Turkey’s most elegant seaside resorts. The town itself offers a fantastic choice of restaurants, bars, shops and historic sites, while the coast that stretches out either side of Bodrum boasts some of the best beach hotels in the Med.

Izmir – Turkey’s third largest city is also one of the country’s most diverse, with its distinct Levantine, Greek, Armenian and Jewish heritage. Today, the city boasts an emerging creative scene with a huge annual arts festival and a number of trendy bars and converted industrial spaces, as well as top hotels.

How to Make the Most of Your Hotel in Turkey

Many of Turkey’s most iconic landmarks can be found in Istanbul. The most famous sight in the city is the Hagia Sofia, a colossal former Orthodox church that was transformed into an imperial mosque and now houses a museum. Other important sights in Istanbul include the Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace and the Grand Bazaar, an enormous, labyrinthine market in the centre of Istanbul. Further afield, visitors to Turkey can see the unique thermal waters and travertine terraces at Pamukkale, the rock formations of Cappadocia, Bodrum Castle and the impressive ruins at Ephesus.

Turkey offers a huge variety of activities, from shopping, dining and partying, to water sports, hiking and cultural discovery. Several long distance walking routes can be found in Turkey, with the 335-mile long Lycian Way one of the most spectacular. Thanks to its extensive coastline, Turkey is a great destination for swimming, sunbathing and watersports, with diving, snorkelling, sailing and jet skiing available, among many more. Istanbul, Izmir and Bodrum are great destinations for culture, food and fashion, while historic sites are dotted all along the country’s coast. Surprisingly for some, winter sports are also on offer in Turkey, with skiing and snowboarding available at several locations across the country.