Celebrate Christmas in Turkey

What if you go to a country with endless riches for your Christmas holidays?

Turkey is the travel and discovery destination for your end-of-year holidays. From its paradise-like beaches to its welcoming people and eclectic landscapes, Turkey is the ideal destination for a family Christmas holiday!

Christmas celebrations in Antalya, in the southern part of the country

Antalya, also called "the Turkish Riviera" is the ideal starting point for a visit to the entire southern part of Turkey at Christmas. This pleasant sea resort has some cultural treasures that must not be missed. Whether you like lying down on the beach, touring monuments, admiring the beautiful landscape, you will not be disappointed in Antalya.

Visit the old port of Antalya, then not far from there, the 38 metres tall grooved minaret, which is the emblem of the city. You should also visit the Alaaddin mosque which will offer you a panoramic view of the town centre and the sea. Plan for a visit at sunset, the lights are wonderful!

Not far away from the city, take a journey into thehistory of Turkey by visiting emblematic archeological sites like the Aspendos theatre or the sites of Perge and Termessos. These are superb sites that remind us of the rich history of Turkey, from the ancient city to Roman ruins.

After all this discoveries, it is time to enjoy family celebrations around a Christmas tree. Gather for a delicious meal, composed of traditional festive dishes. Mezzes of all kinds, egg-based Turkish menemen, pepper and tomatoes or mantis, small home-made raviolis served with yoghurt and tomatoes. One thing is sure, you are going to have a treat during Christmas in Turkey!

Did you know?

Mezzes are small appetizers to be taken before dinner. In Turkey, meals with family or friends always start with eating of mezzes. There are many types, with raw fruits and vegetables, with meat, with vegetables and even with fish or yoghurt. A must-have of Turkish cuisine!

Celebrate Christmas in Turkey in these resorts

Head for the beautiful city of Istanbul to celebrate Christmas

Set down your bags in Istanbul to celebrate Christmas in Turkey. This is a fascinating city with many cultural influences! It lights up when the holidays come around and takes you into a magical atmosphere. Simultaneously modern and historic, Istanbul holds incredible treasures like the Saint Sophia basilica, which has become a museum. Just beside the basilica, do not miss the Basilica Cistern, also called the Sunken Palace. The blue mosque is the most visited monument in Istanbul and you will understand why! It is the most beautiful mosque in the city, its blue earthenware tiles and domes are of great beauty. A lively atmosphere is guaranteed at the Grand Bazaar! This huge market is the biggest in the world and extends over more than 200,000 m². There, in hundreds of shops in the market, you will find gifts and souvenirs to take back home from your journey!

You can conclude your shopping at the Christmas market of Istanbul. Local artworks, culinary dishes and breathtaking shows, the different markets offer the opportunity to enjoy a lovely time with your children at Christmas. What if you try a different Christmas meal? Eat with delicious kebab which is a traditional Turkish dish, or with borek, a popular cheese pastry. On the sweet side of things, Turkish pastries are very delicious! Baklava or Lokums, give yourself a treat by celebrating Christmas in Turkey!

Christmas in Turkey: explore Izmir

To celebrate Christmas in Turkey, on the shores of the Aegian sea, explore Izmir, the third largest city in the country. Izmir promises you total immersion into the Oriental culture. Walk around in the biggest commercial street of the city and stroll into the local shops. At the end of the street, on Konak Square, admire the watchtower, the emblem of Izmir. With a peak height of 25 metres, the tower is a veritable landmark. For a cultural break, go to the city’s archeological museum. There, you will see items that were found in ancient sites from all over the region, an exciting journey back in time!

In Izmir, the lights and decorations will take you and your children into a breathtaking atmosphere. Celebrating Christmas in Turkey is enjoying the gentle temperatures and strolling in the streets, tasting hot chestnuts and perceiving the aroma of Mediterranean cuisine. You will surely have the opportunity to catch a glimpse of Santa strolling in the streets of the city, a magical moment for both young and old!

Celebrating Christmas in Turkey, is enjoying an unusual sweetness of living, mild temperatures and sunshine, for original and cultural end-of-year celebrations!

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