Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Holiday destination: Turkey

Your exploration of Turkey should include Istanbul, the only city in the world to be located in both Europe and Asia. It was once the capital of three empires, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman – each has left its mark. The city’s museums, churches, palaces, mosques and bazaars are attractions that hold infinite potential for sightseeing. Don’t miss Tokapi Palace, a maze of grand buildings that was once the home to sultans and their court between the 15th and 19th centuries. Its opulence is truly astounding. Istanbul’s Imperial Sultana met Mosque (better known as the Blue Mosque) is synonymous with the city. In the summer months, an evening light show is a wonderful way to learn more about this cultural landmark.

Take a path to another time by following one of the infamous silk roads of Anatolia. Goods such as porcelain, spices, paper, jewelry and silk flowed along these roads for almost 2,000 years. Today their renewed popularity brings tourists from around the world to witness this important part of history, with visits to ancient mansions, inns, and mosques. Turkey’s Mediterranean coast is famous for mild winters and warm summers. A dip in the Mediterranean, or a visit to a Turkish bath, makes Britain’s sometime chilly weather seem far, far away.

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