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Since the beginning of April, every corner in Istanbul blossoms with tulips, the flower identified with the city itself. As a part of the 13th Tulip Festival, the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality introduced the biggest tulip carpet in the world in Sultanahmet Square on Thursday.

The 1,734 square-meter tulip carpet is made of 565,000 tulips in different colors and creates a traditional Turkish carpet motif.

Taken from the Turkic homeland in Central Asia’s Pamir Mountains to Anatolia and spread worldwide, the tulip is the symbol of Turkey and Istanbul. The tulip was brought to Europe in the second half of the 15th century. Tulip bulbs sent by the Austro-Hungarian Empire’s ambassador in Istanbul, Ogier Ghislain de Busbecq, who was also a botanist, first arrived in Vienna and then in the Netherlands where tulip fields cover most of the country.

The tulip carpet in Sultanahmet Square will be on display until the end of the month(30 of April 2018).

The post The Largest ‘ Tulip Carpet ‘ in Sultanahmet , Istanbul appeared first on Turkey Travel Info.

The time of a year when you see hundreds of red hearts, roses and kissing lovers on streets has arrived. Just like the rest of the world, lovers who hope to mark Feb. 14 have either already planned a vacation or are looking to find a tranquil destination to spend a romantic time together.

Turkey, which has many romantic destinations that make you feel as if you were alone on the earth with your better half, calls on you this coming Valentine’s Day. Full of lovely destinations, scenery and incredible culture, Turkey is February’s hot choice for couples. To turn your holiday into an unforgettable adventure, here are the best romantic holiday destinations and secluded love nests.

ISTANBUL

Istanbul, absolutely the most romantic destination for lovers on Valentine’s Day with many magnificent, historic architectural wonders and streets where you can walk hand in hand. Its scenery is enough to let you feel love in the air, especially with “that special someone.” With seven hills and three surrounding seas, Istanbul is magically beautiful. The best destination on Valentine’s Day is the Galata Tower in Istanbul’s top tourist destination: Taksim Square. Imagine you are on the roof of one of the city’s most well-known landmarks and watching the mesmerizing sunset. That is exactly what “enjoying the best of both worlds” means. Originally built as a watchtower, the medieval structure is 66.9 meters (nine stories) high. At the time it was the city’s tallest structure, providing a vantage point to look out over the city of Constantinople, sprawling over the opposite side of the Golden Horn. An elevator only goes to the seventh floor, so visitors must climb the two remaining stories. The restaurant at the top gives you an incredible opportunity to enjoy Valentine’s Day dinner, while the 360-degree panoramic view captivates you with the Bosporus, the Golden Horn, the Blue Mosque and many other monumental landmarks at sunset. If you come in the evening, you can dance the night away to Turkish music. There are other romantic destinations around Galata Tower where you can have dinner, but a reservation is a must on Valentine’s Day. As you enter the tower, you realize that it has a spirit different from any other place; there is also a legend that says that someday you will marry the man or woman who climbs to the top of the tower with you for the first time.

The second option on Valentine’s Day is the Maiden’s Tower, which historically has been the subject of many legends concerning love. The Maiden’s Tower sits in the middle of the Bosporus like a beautiful girl displaying Istanbul’s beauty. The history of the Maiden’s Tower stretches back 2,500 years, and the associated legend tells of the romance of two lovers, Hero and Leander, and that a castle was built on the present site by a Byzantine emperor for his daughter Hero. When the emperor learned that his daughter was in love with a commoner, Leander, he imprisoned Hero in the castle. This did not discourage Leander from crossing the Hellespont to see her. One stormy night, having no light to guide him, he drowned. Upon hearing of his death, Hero flung herself into the sea. Today, the tower has been transformed into a café and restaurant, and it offers a night filled with romance and exclusive Ottoman and international cuisine. More than just a romantic dinner location with a nostalgic ambience, the tower is also a memorable wedding venue.

CAPPADOCIA

Located in the middle of the country, Cappadocia, which represents the finest work of Mother Nature, is a great place to witness history. A place of natural beauty, Cappadocia has such a charming atmosphere that a one-day trip is insufficient for enjoying all of its attractions. With its volcanic landscape that offers gorgeous scenery and slick rocks with lush, green tracks and caves, tunnels and canyons waiting to be explored, Cappadocia is a paradise. Over the centuries, wind and melting snow has carved the volcanic rock into unique colors and shapes, such as fairy chimneys. In this magical region, you can explore the heart of Anatolia’s historic remains, some of the most renowned ancient natural wonders. Cappadocia, one of the most visited destinations in Turkey, is packed with local and foreign tourists even in the harshest season. The only way to understand why it is among the top-visited spots is to take a trip to this magical land. It is one of the best places for a romantic holiday, and where foreign tourists come specifically to have wedding photos taken. All the leaves and natural beauty seem to keep pace with the colors of the area in every season, and Cappadocia is especially enchanting in the winter. Cappadocia Cave Suites, located in the city of Göreme, is a perfect destination to feel as if you are living in a fairy tale with natural beauties and cozy cave suites with a Turkish bath, sauna and a rooftop so you can watch the Cappadocia landscape, making you feel like you are living in a dream.

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Easter is an occasion to mark Jesus’s crucifixion and his subsequent resurrection.The Easter season begins on Ash Wednesday (February 14) which is the first day of Lent.

The season of Lent lasts for 40 days (excluding Sundays) and remembers the sacrifices Jesus made when he fasted in the desert.

Christians will generally fast for the 40 days or give up indulgent foods and vices.

The day before Lent begins – Pancake Day or Shrove Tuesday – is a day for making pancakes to use up rich foods such as eggs and milk ahead of fasting.

Lent culminates with the Holy Week, which includes Maundy Thursday – the day of the Last Supper, Good Friday – the day which Jesus was crucified, and Holy Saturday – the day that Jesus’ body lay in the tomb.

Easter Sunday is the first day after Lent and celebrates Jesus’ resurrection.

In the UK, Mothering Sunday is celebrated three weeks before Easter Sunday.

Why does Easter change every year?

Easter Sunday always falls on the next full moon after the Spring Equinox.

As the full moon can be on different days in different time zones, the Church said they would use the 14th day of the lunar month instead – the Paschal Full Moon – and host Easter Day on the following Sunday.

Once the date of that moon is known, Easter Day and the Easter holidays can be determined.

Christians celebrate Easter on a Sunday, as it was the day of Christ’s resurrection, after he was crucified on a Friday two days before.

The Paschal Full Moon was chosen because of the date of Passover in the Jewish calendar, and the Last Supper (Holy Thursday) occurred on the Passover.

Therefore Easter is the Sunday after Passover.

It was determined by a council of Christian bishops that Easter Day would always be on a Sunday to commemorate the happy occasion.

Easter can falls as early as March and as late as April, as it is dependent on the year and calendar used.

Christians in the east may use the Julian calendar instead of the Gregorian calendar so may have a different date than Western Christianity.

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It is often suggested that the Dawn Service observed on Anzac Day has its origins in a military routine still followed by the Australian Army. The half-light of dawn was one of the times favoured for launching an attack. Soldiers in defensive positions were woken in the dark before dawn, so by the time first light crept across the battlefield they were awake, alert, and manning their weapons; this is still known as the “stand-to”. As dusk is equally favourable for battle, the stand-to was repeated at sunset.

After the First World War, returned soldiers sought the comradeship they had felt in those quiet, peaceful moments before dawn. A dawn vigil became the basis for commemoration in several places after the war. It is difficult to say when the first dawn services were held, as many were instigated by veterans, clergymen, and civilians from all over the country. A dawn requiem mass was held at Albany as early as 1918, and a wreathlaying and commemoration took place at dawn in Toowoomba the following year. In 1927 a group of returned men returning at dawn from an Anzac Day function held the night before came upon an elderly woman laying flowers at the as yet unfinished Sydney Cenotaph. Joining her in this private remembrance, the men later resolved to institute a dawn service the following year. Some 150 people gathered at the Cenotaph in 1928 for a wreathlaying and two minutes’ silence. This is generally regarded as the beginning of organised dawn services. Over the years the ceremonies have developed into their modern forms and have seen an increased association with the dawn landings of 25 April 1915.

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Year Date Day Holiday State : 25 Apr Wed  2018  Anzac Day National

Anzac Day is celebrated on 25 April each year, regardless of on which day it falls. The day is a public holiday, however no replacement holiday is given if Anzac Day falls on a weekend (except in Western Australia).

It was on 25 April 1915 that the armies of Australia and New Zealand entered into their premier battle of the First World War, at Gallipoli, Turkey. At the time, Australia had only been recognised as a federal commonwealth for thirteen years.

Many Australians were sympathetic to the United Kingdom, which they regarded as the motherland. So the volunteer armies of Australian and New Zealand, eager to fight the good fight in the war, bravely landed on the shore of the Gallipoli Peninsula with the intent to capture and secure a safe passage for Allied navies.

At Gallipoli, the Anzacs faced off with one of the fiercest armies history has ever known. Despite landing under the cover of darkness, the Anzacs were met with immediate bombardment and gunfire. On the shores of Gallipoli, the Australian and New Zealand armies fought for eight months forcing a stalemate. Eight thousand Anzac soldiers lost their lives before the Allies called for an evacuation.

While the operation itself was not a success, the valour and determination shown by Anzacs, the “Knights of Gallipoli,” were immediately commemorated in Australia, London, and even at the Allies’ camp in Egypt in 1916. Parades and ceremonies were held in their honour, and even those who were wounded in combat were a part of the parade while they were still recovering.

By the 1920s, the day had become a way to memorialise the sixty thousand Australian soldiers who died in the First World War. By the next decade, all Australian states had a form of celebration for Anzac Day, and many of the traditions we still carry out today had already taken shape. Forevermore, the 25th of April would be known as the day Australia arrived as a force in the world.

Anzac Day’s  Commemorations

Dawn Service  The Dawn Service is one of the most revered and popular ceremonies that takes place on Anzac Day. The Dawn Service is thought to have originated in the military routine known as the “stand-to.” Opposing armies often attacked in the partial light of dusk and dawn. Ever vigilant, the Australian military made it a practice to wake the soldiers and prepare them at their posts with weapons before the other armies could strike. The stand-to technique is still used by the Australian military to this day. The Dawn Service seeks to recapture those quiet moments in the near-darkness, when soldiers had an opportunity to bond and reflect. While the first Dawn Services were vigils performed only by veterans in complete silence, all Australians are encouraged to participate. Today, some services feature readings, hymns, and riffle volleys.
The Last Post  Often heard at the Dawn Service and other memorials on Anzac Day, The Last Post is the tune that is played over a bugle to signify the end of the day, or the final post. The soldiers could then take their rest. At memorial services, this melody is played to suggest the last post as a metaphor. The soldiers who are being honoured can hear the tune and know that all duties have been completed, so he or she may finally rest in peace.
Memorials, Marches and Exhibits  Throughout the day, many towns host marches that feature veterans and members of The Returned & Services League. Thousands of people gather to give their thanks and respect along the parade routes. Memorial readings where well known poems such as “For the Fallen” and “In Flanders Fields,” help the community to honour and remember those who have served in the military, and better experience what they went through. Haunting verse such as, “Take up our quarrel with the foe: / To you from failing hands we throw / The torch; be yours to hold it high. / If ye break faith with us who die,” cause those in attendance to take a moment and really consider what roles our soldiers play in the greater context of Anzac Day. War memorials and museums also host exhibits on Australia’s military history to deepen our understanding.
Red Poppies The lines that follow in Canadian Colonel John McCrae’s poem, “In Flanders Field,” mention, “We shall not sleep, though poppies grow / In Flanders fields.” Red poppies were the first flowers to bloom on the battlefields of Northern France and Belgium despite the bloodshed in the First World War. It was a popular tale among soldiers that the flowers gained their bright red hue from the blood of the fallen that had soaked into the ground. These red flowers are placed on war memorials as a symbol of remembrance, and perhaps a reminder that out of sacrifice, new hope emerges.
Anzac Day Football Although football had been played on Anzac Day for a number of years, the match between Collingwood and Essendon did not become a standard recurrence until 1995. When Collingwood and Essendon first squared off against each other, it was not uncommon for AFL matches to occur on Anzac Day, as donations from the day went to benefit the RSL. However, after that first match between the classic rivals, it became clear that this annual match was a special way to pay tribute to the values of Anzac Day; while deployed across the globe, football played by Anzac soldiers as a way to sharpen their skills, keep up good humour, and forge better connections with one another. That same vein of spirit, courage, mateship, and fairness runs throughout the day, at the end of the annual match, the Anzac medal is awarded to the player who best demonstrates these highly valued Australian qualities.
Catafalque parties A catafalque is a raised structure that holds a coffin. At a funeral as a sign of respect, four soldiers would stand about a meter away from the catafalque, facing in four different directions, with their heads lowered and weapons held at reverse. Mourners would pass by to say farewell to the departed. On Anzac Day, you may see soldiers standing in such a position again as a sign of tribute.
Anzac Biscuits These treats had a very practical beginning. During the First World War, the friends and families of soldiers would send care packages overseas. Since any food they could send had to be resistant to spoilage and full of nutrition, a biscuit made from rolled oats, sugar, flour, coconut, butter, and a few other ingredients became a popular pastry to pack in boxes. To this day, Anzac biscuits are one of the few products approved to bear the Anzac acronym, which is protected by Federal legislation.

The Popular Locations for Anzac Day commemorations

  • The Australian War Memorial: Located in the capital at Canberra, the Australian War Memorial hosts one of the largest Anzac Day commemoration in the country. In fact, there are even activities taking place on the days before and after. The Memorial hosts its own Dawn Service, a national ceremony featuring a march of veterans and peacekeepers, and exhibits throughout the weekend.
  • Brisbane: At midnight the day before, Brisbane hosts a silent service for Anzac Day, followed by a Dawn Service at the Shrine of Remembrance. The Anzac Day March in Brisbane features between ten and fifteen thousand people with about fifty thousand spectators flocking to support them. In the past, the March has been lead by the Royal Australian Navy.
  • Perth: The largest Dawn Service in Western Australia takes place at the State War Memorial in Perth. There is also a Gunfire Breakfast for ex-service personnel and the community to fill the time between the Dawn Service and the March, which ends in a memorial service.
  • Fremantle: In addition to the Dawn Service at Monument Hill, and the parade leaving from Esplanade Reserve, Fremantle also holds a closing service with an Anzac Day Concert. The spirit of the day continues on at the Sir Hughie Edwards Anzac Day Derby between South Fremantle and North Fremantle football clubs. Free admission is offered to persons with military medals or uniforms.
  • Melbourne: The Shrine of Remembrance in Melbourne not only hosts a Dawn Service, but also a Ray of Light ceremony. The Consort of Melbourne also hosts a concert at St Paul’s Cathedral that features the Choir of St James’ King Street from Sydney. Alongside pieces from the old masters Bach and Schutz, Johannes Brahms, a talented composer, instructor, and music therapist, wrote a chorale peace as solace to the living in honour of those who have passed on.

 

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A land of incredible natural beauty, fascinating history and colorful folklore, Turkey arguably has something for everyone.

Here we list the 18 unmissable and most authentic towns in Turkey;

-Amasra Town, Bartin


-Mudanya Town, Bursa


-Goynuk Town, Bolu


-Mudurnu Town, Bolu


-Safranbolu Town, Karabuk


-Beypazari Town, Ankara


-Tarakli Town, Sakarya


-Urgup Town, Cappadocia


-Harran Town, Sanliurfa


-Alacati Town, Izmir


-Halfeti Town, Sanliurfa


-Midyat Town, Mardin


-Camlihemsin Town, Rize


-Assos Town, Canakkale


-Akyaka Town, Mugla

-Cunda Island, Balikesir

-Foca Town, Izmir


-Ayvalik Town, Balikesir

The post Turkish Traditional Towns appeared first on Turkey Travel Info.

 

During the summer months the Princes’ Islands are popular destinations for day trips from Istanbul. As there is no traffic on the Islands, the only transport being horse and cart, they are incredibly peaceful compared with the city of Istanbul.

  • Kinaliada Island: Kinaliada is the fourth largest of the Princes’ Islands and also closest island to the European and Asian side of Istanbul, about 12 kilometres to the south, named because of the colour of its earth.
  • Burgazada Island: Burgazada is the third largest of the Princes’ Islands near Istanbul. Sleepy, peaceful Burgazada is the ideal location to escape the noise and traffic for a just few hours or a full day trip.
  • Heybeliada Island: Heybeliada is the second largest and the most green of the Princes’ Islands in Istanbul both from the view point of its population and its surface area. As on all the islands, you can hire bikes to travel around or take a horse drawn carriage.
  • Buyukada Island: Buyukada is the largest of the Princes’ Islands, also the farthest from Istanbul, welcomes its visitors with a very enjoyable atmosphere, with its historical pier, large bazaar square and famous fish restaurants.

 

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USEFUL TURKISH WORDS

*Yes = Evet
*No = Hayır
*Thank you = Teşekkürler
*Please = Lütfen
*Excuse me = Pardon
*Hello = Merhaba
*Goodbye = Hoşçakal
*I do not understand = Anlamıyorum

*Where is …? = Nerede …?
*How much is the fare? = Bilet kaç lira?
*One ticket to …, please. = Bir bilet …, lütfen
*Train = Tren
*Bus = Otobüs
*Underground/tube/metro = Metro
*Tram = Tramvay
*Train station = Tren istasyonu
*Bus station = Otobüs terminali
*Airport = Havaalanı

*I would like to buy… = Satın almak istiyorum…
*How much does this cost? = Ne kadar ediyor?
*Do you have…? = Var mı…?
*Do you accept credit cards? = Kredi kartı kabul ediyor musunuz?
*Tourist Information = Turist Danışma
*Police station = Karakol
*Hospital = Hastane
*Store/shop = Mağaza

NUMBERS 

1 One = Bir
2 Two= İki
3 Three = Üç
4 Four = Dört
5 Five = Beş
6 Six = Altı
7 Seven = Yedi
8 Eight = Sekiz
9 Nine = Dokuz
10 Ten = On

CALENDAR

*Day = Gün
*Week = Hafta
*Month = Ay
*Year = Yıl
*Today = Bugün
*Yesterday = Dün
*Tomorrow = Yarın

*Monday = Pazartesi
*Tuesday = Salı
*Wednesday = Çarşamba
*Thursday = Perşembe
*Friday = Cuma
*Saturday = Cumartesi
*Sunday = Pazar

TURKISH ALPHABET
A B C Ç D E F G Ğ H I İ J K L M N O Ö P R S Ş T U Ü V Y Z

Turkish Pronunciation;

 I as in plus
Ö as in fur
Ü as in tu
Ç as in church
G as in gentle
H as in high
Ş as in show

The post Most Useful Turkish Words for Travellers in Turkey appeared first on Turkey Travel Info.

Turkey is a popular destination for the international music festivals and concerts, also on the international touring calendar, with everything from blues music festivals to stadium rock concerts making their way here. Get your diary out and start planning the musicals and concerts you want to see while on holiday in Turkey.

Some of the best music festivals in Turkey;

*SunSplash Open Air Antalya Music Festival
*Rock’n Coke Music Festival
*Istanbul International Music Festival
*Efes Pilsen Blues Festival
*Mersin International Music Festival
*Istanbul International Jazz Festival
*Chill Out Music Festival Istanbul
*Konya International Mystic Music Festival
*Izmir International European Jazz Festival
*Istanbul One Love Festival
*Gumusluk International Classical Music Festival
*Ankara International Music Festival
*Ankara International Jazz Festival
*Antalya International Piano Festival
*Bozcaada Jazz Festival

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The Galata Tower, Galata Kulesi in Turkish, is one of the highest and oldest towers of Istanbul. 63 meter (206 feet) high tower provides a panoramic view of the old town. It was built in the 14th century by the Genoese colony as part of the defense wall surrounding their district at Galata directly opposite ancient Constantinopolis. They called the tower as “Christea Turris”, or “Tower of Christ”. The Genoese were involved in trade with the Byzantines and the tower was used for the surveillance of the Harbor in the Golden Horn. After the conquest of Constantinople by Mehmet II, it served to detect fires in the city.

Hezarfen Ahmet Celebi was the first flying Turk during the Ottoman Empire of the 17th century. He copied bird wings and studied air flows, than jumping from the Galata Tower he overflew the Bosphorus and landed at Uskudar district on the Asian side, around 6 kilometers (4 miles) in distance.

After the Republic, Galata Tower was restored and opened to the public in 1967. The tower houses a cafeteria on top, there was also a night club which is closed down after the last restoration in 2013. A couple of elevators will take you up but there are still three more floors to climb by stairs to get on the panoramic terrace which is 52 meters above the ground. A small souvenir shop is located inside the tower just across the ticket office at the entrance level.

Galata Kulesi (Tower)
Büyük Hendek Caddesi, Galata
Phone: +90 212 293 81 80
Admission: 25 TL

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