If you are looking for a winter getaway Turkey may be a cheap option this month. The Turkish Lira crashed by 30% last week, the Turkish central bank hiked interest rates to try and stabilise the situation but at the time of writing this post the country’s currency (TRY) is still down 24% against the British pound (GBP). The weak Turkish currency means that if you were visiting the country this week you would have 24% more to spend on nick-nacs, raki and meze or meals out than you did last year.
Turkey is not a very good option for winter sun though, sun-seekers maybe disappointed with Turkey in the winter. According to holidayweather.com the average February temperature in Antalya is just 11C, the average daily sunshine hours for Antalya in February is very good at 11 though and 11 hours of daily sunshine is about 7 more hours than you can expect in the average February, UK day.
The long sunny (but not very warm) days make Turkey an ideal destination for winter sight-seeing so in this post we will look at some popular Turkish tourist attractions.
Istanbul – Istanbul used to be the end of the line for that famous train, The Orient Express. The city has a rich history and was once known as Constantinople. Constantinople was the capital of a Byzantine Christian empire until it was finally conquered by the Ottoman Turks in 1453. The city is often said to be the dividing line between the European and Asian continents, East and West, Istanbul was of great importance to both sides during the cold war. Today the city is home to many tourist attractions such as the Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia.
Aspendos Theatre – The Aspendos Theatre is located in near Serik, 24 miles from Antalya. The Theatre’s location to the Mediterranean sea makes it a popular summer tourist destination. Aspendos was built by Greek architect Zenon in 155 AD during the rule of Roman Emperor, Marcus Aurelius, the theatre used to seat 7,000 spectators who probably enjoyed gladiator fights,etc. Aspendos is thebest-preserved theatre of antiquity.
Mount Nemrut – Nemrut is mountain, a 2,134m and located in the in southeastern part of the country near the city of Adiyaman but Nemrut is no ordinary mountain. In 62 BC, King Antiochus I Theos of Commagene built a tomb at the top of the mountain and flanked it with massive statues of himself, two eagles, two lions, various Iranian, Armenian and Greek gods. Maybe a bit cold at this time of year but tourists like to watch the sunrise from the eastern terrace of Nemrut, apparently the rising sun gives the now crumbled and bodyless statutes a beautiful orange hue.
Library of Celsus – The Library of Celsus is another ancient ruin from the Roman empire, the popular tourist attraction is located in what used to be Ephesus, an ancient Greek city located on the coast of Ionia. The Library of Celsus was built in 135 AD to honour Tiberius Julius Celsus Polemaeanus. Tiberius Julius Celsus Polemaeanus or Celsus for short was a popular Roman emporer, he paid for the building of the library from his own pocket and upon his death he was buried in a sarcophagus beneath it. At the time of his death, it was unusual to be buried within city limits so it is thought that this was a special honour for Celsus.
This post was written by Mark Stubbles, Mark is an avid traveller and guest blogger.