Packed with brimming ancient monuments, mesmerizing scenery, dazzling places, and vast history, Turkey is a place of many experiences. But do you know there are things you don’t get to see and know daily? So, to make you aware of the fascinating facts about Turkey, we are curating a list of Turkey's existing truths.
Waking up in a new place, listening to the sounds of a new city, trying new cuisines, and adding new adventures are all good. But there’s nothing like the magic of knowing a place from its roots. There are many interesting facts about Turkey that make you create a different side of this beautiful country. If you don’t know much about this country, these facts will help you understand better. These facts will give you a great insight into this stunning destination and will help you decide why you should visit this country.
For being a gateway between Europe and Asia, Turkey has steeped into a soaring history and impressive facts. So, let’s skim through them one by one.
25 Fascinating Facts About Turkey That Will Amaze You
Here you will get to read about a lot of Turkey facts that you haven’t yet known and read anywhere else:
1. Grand Bazaar is World’s Biggest and Oldest Market
The world’s oldest and largest market welcomes up to 4,00,000 per day. It has 64 streets and 4000 shops. Whether you shop for souvenirs, beautiful lamps, Turkish rugs, or Turkish delights, you can find anything here. If you are in Istanbul, allow yourself time to visit this marvel and indulge in shopping. The Grand Bazaar is open six days a week from 9 am to 7 pm except on Sunday.
2. Turkey Has the First-Ever Church in Antakya
The cave church in Antioch is a must-see place in Turkey. One of the interesting facts about Turkey is that St. Peter’s Church was the first place with a Christian community. It is the world’s oldest place of Christian worship. You can find traces of ancient times in this place.
3. Turkey is the Birthplace of Santa Claus
You heard it right! Santa Claus was born in Patara, Turkey. His name was St. Nicholas. He was born in the fourth century. It is one of the most impressive facts about Turkey that people tends to get astonished about. So yes, your childhood wasn’t a lie. Santa Claus was a real person.
4. Turkey’s Coastlines Are One of the World’s Longest Coastlines
One of the jaw-dropping Turkey facts is that its coastlines are among the top 20 longest coastlines in the world. It is the most diverse coastline, which has long stretches along the Black Sea.
5. Turkey Has Its Foot on Both Asia and Europe
Turkey’s largest city, Istanbul, connects Europe and Asia. Istanbul sits beautifully on the Bosphorus strait, with one side Asia and the other side Europe. If you’re in Turkey and wondering where to go, head to this gorgeous city.
6. Hagia Sophia is the Most Famous Attraction in Turkey
Turkey’s most visited tourist attraction is Hagia Sophia. It was built as a Christian Church. Later evolved into a mosque and then a museum. However, it has become the mosque again. Hagia Sophia is a cultural marvel, and this is one of the iconic facts about Turkey that cannot be changed.
7. Istanbul is the Economic & Cultural Capital of Turkey
Istanbul is the largest city in Turkey, with a population of 15.84 million. It is one of the interesting facts about Turkey because it is not the capital of Turkey.
8. World’s 75% of Hazelnut Exports are from Turkey
Turkey is the largest exporter of Hazlenuts, which grows in the Mediterranean basin in Turkey. Many Turkish desserts are made up of Hazlenuts, such as Baklava. This is one of the mouthwatering Turkey Country facts.
9. No One Can Wear a Fez in Turkey
It is one of the shocking facts about Turkey that no one can wear the Fez. The Fez is a red color hat with a black tassel. The Fez name came from Morocco, where the hat originated. You may get arrested for wearing the Fez.
10. Turkey Has 30 Spoken Languages
Although the official language of the country is Turkish, there are over 30 languages spoken across the country, including Zazaki, Kurmanji, Mesopotamian Arabic, etc. This is one of the mind-boggling facts about Turkey.
11. Turkey is the Official Home of Kebab
Kebab is the most famous dish in Turkey. Turkey has several kinds of kebabs, and Turks are the best ones to make them. No one can make the Kebab like Turks. Kebab is the symbol of Turkey cuisine. It is one of the most interesting facts about Turkey.
12. Turkey’s National Sport is Oil Wrestling
Oil or Grease Wrestling is considered to be Turkey’s traditional sport. In this sport, the wrestlers covered themselves in oil before they fight with their opponent. It is called Kirkpinar in Turkey. Every year in June, the oil wrestling festival is held in memory of forty Turkish soldiers who took part in the Rumelian War. Undoubtedly, it is one of the fascinating facts about Turkey.
13. Agriculture has begun in Turkey
Almost Half of Turkey has made up of agricultural land. Many historians believe that agriculture started in Turkey over 11,000 years B.C. It is one of the thought-provoking facts about Turkey.
14. Turkish Evil Eye is the Most-Purchased Souvenir
Most people bought an evil eye amulet as it's meant to protect against bad spirits and evil eyes (Nazar). The tradition of making evil eye art is 3000 years old. This kind of symbol can be found in countries where the Ottoman Empire was present. Both Tourists and locals buy this souvenir for their homes, cars, and other places.
15. Turkey Houses Over 82,693 Mosques
You must know that the majority of the population in Turkey is Muslim. But you may not know that there are over 82,693 mosques in the country. This is one of the hidden Turkey country facts that not many people know.
16. Turks are Hard-core Tea Lovers
Turkey people are the highest number of tea consumers in the entire world. This is one of the most captivating facts about Turkey. Turks consume three to four cups of tea each day. Over 90% of people in Turkey claim to drink tea every day.
17. Turkey Has a Youthful Population
Yes, you read it right! Most of the Turkish generation is youthful. 48.3% of the Turkish population is under 30, and the other 24.4% of the population is between the ages of 15-29. This is one of the astonishing Turkey facts. Turkey is one of the countries that has the most youth.
18. Turkish Bid a Goodbye with a Bucket of Water
This fact may sound odd, but that is how Turks say goodbye to someone. When someone leaves, a bucket of water is thrown at the person. It is not a way of washing the memory but wishing that the person returns soon. Isn’t the most interesting facts about Turkey?
19. Turkey Has an Underground Refuge
The famous Cappadocia region of Turkey, which is now popular for Hot Air Ballooning has been a welcome refuge for Christians. When the Christians were escaping the Roman Empire, they hid in the underground area of this region. You can visit this area if you are here for a Hot Air Balloon ride.
20. Camels Are Not Native Animals of Turkey
You can find many camels in Turkey. But you will be shocked to know that the camel is not a native animal of Turkey. Camels mostly thrive in desert environments, and as there are hardly any deserts in Turkey, it is unusual to find them there. So, it is one of the surprising Turkey facts.
21. Istanbul’s Airport is Connected to Over 250 International Destinations
Istanbul Ataturk Airport in Turkey is one of the most widespread airports in the world that connects to over 250 international destinations. Turkish Airlines flies up to 50 domestic stops and 250 global destinations in 123 countries. Turkey’s geographical location makes it accessible to fly almost anywhere. This is one of the most significant facts about Turkey that seems intriguing.
22. Turkey is the 6th Most-Visited Destination Worldwide
Every year, over 50 million people visit Turkey. These tourists become part of Turkey’s cultural events, festivals, cuisines, and nature. The prime reason for such great footfall is its Mediterranean climate which provides six months of summertime in southern parts of Turkey. Due to this, the weather remains ideal for travelers to enjoy everything.
23. Tulips are Actually from Turkey & Not Holland
The long-old belief that Tulips are from Europe is going to get shattered. Turkey introduced tulips to Holland and the rest of Europe during the 17th century. It is the national flower of Turkey. It is one of the interesting facts about Turkey that can change the way you see Tulips.
24. Turkish Celebrate the Beginning and End of Life with Sweets
In Turkey, there’s a common tradition to eat sweets for major life events like the beginning and end of life. When a mother gives birth to a baby, she receives a lot of sweets, and the infant is traditionally welcomed with halva. The sweet halva is also served at the time of the funeral. It is one of the thought-provoking facts about Turkey.
25. Turkey is Home to Huge Mountains
There are high mountain ranges in Turkey that captivates the attention of many people. Turkey has over 130 peaks that are higher than 2900 meters. The highest mountain in Turkey is Mount Ararat standing tall with a height of 5165 meters. Also, this is one of the most incredible tourist attractions in Turkey. It offers marvelous scenery and diverse landscapes.
Arrange a Turkey Tour with Dook International!
Turkey is a one-of-a-kind country with profound history, soaring mountains, beautiful beaches, vibrant culture, a famous Grand Bazaar, and rich food. It is the only country to have its foot in two major continents- Asia & Europe. If all these facts about Turkey interest you enough, take a flight to this stunning country and experience its untouched beauty. We are sure you would like to dig deep and discover what else is there in Turkey. If you want to go on a vacation to Turkey, buy Dook’s customized Turkey tour packages on a pocket-friendly budget.
Read More About Turkey:
Top Reasons to Visit Turkey
Romantic Honeymoon Destinations in Turkey
Best Things To Do in Turkey
Best Cafes in Turkey
- Only male turkeys gobble. ...
- Wild turkeys can fly. ...
- Wild turkeys sleep in trees. ...
- They can change colors. ...
- Their poop determines if they're male or female. ...
- Benjamin Franklin preferred the turkey to the bald eagle. ...
- Turkeys can see better than humans. ...
- Presidential pardons for turkeys started in 1989.
- Hot water will turn into ice faster than cold water. ...
- The Mona Lisa has no eyebrows. ...
- The strongest muscle in the body is the tongue. ...
- Ants take rest for around 8 Minutes in 12-hour period. ...
- "I Am" is the shortest complete sentence in the English language.
Turkey is famous for a diverse set of both oriental and European elements — from the traditional Turkish tea to the majestic Hagia Sophia. It's also famous for its carpets, hammam and bazaars, destinations like Istanbul and Cappadocia, and sweet treats like Turkish delights and baklava.What are 2 facts about turkey meat? ›
Turkey is low in fat and high in protein. Turkey has more protein than chicken or beef. White meat has fewer calories and less fat than dark meat. Turkeys will have 3,500 feathers at maturity.What are 3 unique facts? ›
- It is impossible for most people to lick their own elbow. ...
- A crocodile cannot stick its tongue out.
- A shrimp's heart is in its head.
- It is physically impossible for pigs to look up into the sky.
- Your nose gets warmer when you lie.
- Before there was Beats by Dre, there was something else altogether. ...
- It's impossible to sneeze with your eyes open.
- The most expensive book ever purchased was sold for $30.8 million. ...
- Speaking of books, there are lots of them to get through.
- AB negative is the rarest blood type.
- On average, the human heart beats 100,000 times a day.
- The strongest muscle in the body is the jaw.
- Fingernails grow faster than toenails.
- The average tongue is about three inches long.
Every region in Turkey has a unique kitchen culture, using distinct ingredients and recipes. As such, Turkish cuisine is much more than tasty kebabs and baklava; it includes fresh seafood and meze, a whole world of desserts, huge breakfast spreads, Ottoman classics, vegetable dishes, and much more.
Turkey is a beautiful country surrounded by sea on 3 sides. The Mediterranean in the south, the Aegean Sea, and the Black Sea to the north and northwest take place in Turkey's overland waters,including the Strait of Dardanelles and Bosporus involve the Marmara Sea.Why is Turkey important? ›
Turkey contributes to international security alongside U.S. forces in Europe, the seas bordering Somalia, and in the Mediterranean. Turkey borders Greece, Bulgaria, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Iran, Iraq, and Syria, and is a key partner for U.S. policy in the surrounding region.
One of the things that makes Turkey unique is that it's spread over two continents. In the capital city of Istanbul, you can literally spend the day in both Europe and Asia. While one side of the city on one side of the Bosporus Strait is technically situated in Asia, the other is in Europe.What are some cool facts about the Turkey flag? ›
Facts About The Turkish Flag That You May Not Know
The Turkish flag isn't just used by Turkey, but also Algeria, Tunisia and Azerbaijan by the 20th century using the crescent and star symbols on their flags. The reason for this is because they are all the Ottoman Empire's successor states.
Etymology. The English name of Turkey (from Medieval Latin Turchia/Turquia) means "land of the Turks". Middle English usage of Turkye is attested to in an early work by Chaucer called The Book of the Duchess (c. 1368).What food is Turkey most known for? ›
- Baklava. Dating back to the Ottoman Empire, baklava is one of the most iconic Turkish dishes and a must for anyone with a sweet tooth. ...
- Şiş kebap. 'Kebab' is an umbrella term that encompasses a variety of street eats, but the most famous is the skewered şiş kebap. ...
- Döner. ...
- Köfte. ...
- Pide. ...
- Kumpir. ...
- Visit the capital of Turkey, Ankara.
- Enjoy a Turkish bath in Istanbul.
- Visit the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul.
- Lycian Rock Tombs.
- Explore the Ruins of Ephesus.
- Hike Mount Nemrut.
- Sail on the Aegean Sea.
- Explore the underground city of Derinkuyu.
Turkish food is considered one of the most diverse in the world. It is dubbed the third richest cuisine following French and Chinese gastronomy. Turkish cuisine is regarded as flavorful and savory and not overly spicy. The food culture is inherently healthy and features a wide array of meats, fruits, and vegetables.Where do turkeys sleep? ›
Wild turkeys are active during the day; roosting in large trees at night to avoid predators. In residential areas, it is not uncommon for turkeys to roost on railings, roofs, or sometimes on vehicles.What are 6 interesting facts? ›
- Glaciers and ice sheets hold about 69 percent of the world's freshwater. ...
- The fastest gust of wind ever recorded on Earth was 253 miles per hour. ...
- Recent droughts in Europe were the worst in 2,100 years. ...
- The best place in the world to see rainbows is in Hawaii.
- Your heart pumps blood through your body.
- The leaves of growing plants are usually green.
- Some people keep dogs as pets.
- 1 liter of water weighs 1 kilogram on Earth.
- There are 50 states in the United States.
- 1) It snows in the Sahara Desert. ...
- 2) There are only two countries in the world where Coca Cola does not exist. ...
- 3) Sudan has the most pyramids in the world (not Egypt) ...
- 4) Colombia's brightest rainbow is in its river.
By age three, your toddler has developed approximately 1,000 trillion connections in their brain, which is around twice as many as the average adult! 90% of your child's brain will develop by the time they're five. 4. The average two-year-old adds around five new words to their vocabulary every day.What are 5 facts about life? ›
- Don't educate your children to be rich. ...
- Eat your food as your medicines. ...
- The one who loves you will never leave you for another, because even if there are 100 reasons to give up, he or she will find one reason to hold on.
- There is a big difference between a human being and being human.
- The dot over a lowercase i and j has a name! ...
- Water makes different sounds depending on its temperature! ...
- McDonald's invented a sweet-tasting type of broccoli! ...
- Rabbits can't be sick! ...
- Humans are the only animals that blush! ...
- The hashtag symbol has a fancy term!
The turkey's popularity spread for practical reasons such as its size and the convenience of being on people's properties. The true answer to why we eat turkey, among other popular Thanksgiving foods like pumpkin and cranberry, was largely due to migration from New England, according to Young.What is the culture of Turkey? ›
Turkey has a collectivist culture whereby strong loyalty is shown to familial and social groups, as well as the broader nation. People's relationships with their neighbours and community are generally closer than what many from the English-speaking West experience.Why did Turkey become so popular? ›
There were a few reasons for this. First, the bird was rather plentiful. One expert estimated that there were at least 10 million turkeys in America at the time of European contact. Second, turkeys on a family farm were almost always available for slaughter.Why does Turkey have 2 flags? ›
However, the Empire flag was chosen to have a five-pointed star rather than eight. After World War One Turkey became a republic and used a modified Ottoman Flag. The flags design is said to represent the moon and a star reflected in a pool of blood during the Battle of Kosovo.
About 75 million people speak Turkish in Turkey, where Turkish is the official language, and 90% of the population speaks it as a first language. Turkish is also the language spoken at home by those living in areas that had been governed by the Ottoman Empire.When was Turkey found? ›
Modern Turkey was founded in 1923 from the Anatolian remnants of the defeated Ottoman Empire by national hero Mustafa Kemal, who was later honored with the title Ataturk, or "Father of the Turks." Under his authoritarian leadership, the country adopted wide-ranging social, legal, and political reforms.What is the biblical name for Turkey? ›
The Hebrew name for the American turkey is tarnegol hodu, literally rooster of India.
Called Asia Minor (Lesser Asia) by the Romans, the land is the Asian part of modern Turkey, across Thrace. It lies across the Aegean Sea to the east of Greece and is usually known by its ancient name Anatolia.What was before Turkey? ›
Turkey was founded as its own country in 1923 after the Turkish War of Independence, but before that, it was part of the Ottoman Empire. The Ottoman Empire ruled in Central Asia, the Middle East, North Africa, and southeastern Europe, and Turkey was right in the middle of it all.What is something unique about a Turkey? ›
The modern domesticated turkey descends from the wild turkey. Turkeys are known to exhibit over 20 distinct vocalisations. Including a distinctive gobble, produced by males, which can be heard a mile away. Individual turkeys have unique voices. This is how turkeys recognise each other.How old is a Turkey before its killed? ›
Turkeys are slaughtered between nine and 21 weeks old but the natural lifespan of a turkey is 10 years. They are dragged head first through an electrically charged stunning water bath to make them unconscious before having their necks cut.Is there anything special of Turkey? ›
Turkey is the world's largest producer of hazelnuts, accounting for almost 70% of the world's production. They export a large percentage of them as well. Turkish hazelnuts are used in many different products, such as chocolate, ice cream, and Baklava.What is a fun fact about food in Turkey? ›
Turkish food is considered one of the most diverse in the world. It is dubbed the third richest cuisine following French and Chinese gastronomy. Turkish cuisine is regarded as flavorful and savory and not overly spicy. The food culture is inherently healthy and features a wide array of meats, fruits, and vegetables.What do turkeys like to do for fun? ›
Turkeys enjoy listening to music and often loudly sing along. They're original. Turkeys' personalities are as varied and distinct as those of humans.What is the most beautiful thing about Turkey? ›
Amazing food, diverse traditions, religions and histories – these are the things that make Turkey such an unforgettable travel destination. Although Turkey is known for its beautiful beaches and hot air balloon-filled skies, it's so much more than that.How long will a turkey keep once killed? ›
A freshly killed bird is fresh and delicious for up to 10 days from processing if kept very cold.How fast do turkeys fly? ›
And, in fact, contrary to popular myth, turkeys can and do fly--they can fly up to 55 miles per hour for short distances! You will likely see them on the ground, though; they typically remain grounded unless spooked.
The European part of Turkey, called Eastern Thrace, has been inhabited since at least 40,000 years ago, and is known to have been in the Neolithic era by about 6000 BC.Where is Turkey eaten the most? ›
Going Global. The country that consumes the most turkey per year, per capita: Israel.Why is Turkey so important? ›
Turkey contributes to international security alongside U.S. forces in Europe, the seas bordering Somalia, and in the Mediterranean. Turkey borders Greece, Bulgaria, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Iran, Iraq, and Syria, and is a key partner for U.S. policy in the surrounding region.Why is Turkey so healthy? ›
"Turkey is a great source of protein, rich in many vitamins and minerals, and is low-fat – if you don't eat the skin," Champagne said. It's rich in B-complex vitamins niacin, B6 and B12 and the essential nutrient choline.What is the most eaten food in Turkey? ›
The international doner kebab
Its name translates as 'rotating grilled meat'. And that is the essence of this dish. As we've already touched on, of all the typical Turkish dishes, the doner kebab is undoubtedly the best known and most popular dish. Its name translates as 'rotating grilled meat'.
Although meat-based foods such as kebabs are common in Turkish cuisine abroad, meals in Turkey largely center around rice, vegetables, and bread.What is Turkey's national food? ›
Probably the most famous Turkish fast food, doner kebap is something you should undoubtedly try in Turkey. Besides, it's the national dish of Turkey! For those that have not tasted it or seen it, it is a sandwich stuffed with slices of meat, vegetables, and spices.