...I love travelling, and my wife, consequently, should love travelling also.
— Oscar Wilde, "The Happy Prince", 1888




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. After a period of one-party rule, an experiment with multi-party politics led to the 1950 election victory of the opposition Democratic Party and the peaceful transfer of power. Since then, Turkish political parties have multiplied, but democracy has been fractured by periods of instability and intermittent military coups (1960, 1971, 1980), which in each case eventually resulted in a return of political power to civilians. In 1997, the military again helped engineer the ouster - popularly dubbed a "post-modern coup" - of the then Islamic-oriented government. Turkey intervened militarily on Cyprus in 1974 to prevent a Greek takeover of the island and has since acted as patron state to the "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus," which only Turkey recognizes. A separatist insurgency begun in 1984 by the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) - now known as the People's Congress of Kurdistan or Kongra-Gel (KGK) - has dominated the Turkish military's attention and claimed more than 30,000 lives. After the capture of the group's leader in 1999, the insurgents largely withdrew from Turkey mainly to northern Iraq. In 2004, KGK announced an end to its ceasefire and attacks attributed to the KGK increased. Turkey joined the UN in 1945 and in 1952 it became a member of NATO. In 1964, Turkey became an associate member of the European Community. Over the past decade, it has undertaken many reforms to strengthen its democracy and economy; it began accession membership talks with the European Union in 2005.


For other places with the same name, see Turkey (disambiguation).

Turkey (Türkiye) is on the Mediterranean, in the Anatolian region of West Asia, with a small section in Southeastern Europe separated by the Turkish Straits (Bosphorus, Sea of Marmara, and Dardanelles). With the Black Sea to the north and the Aegean Sea in the west and Mediterranean Sea to the southwest, Turkey is surrounded by Bulgaria and Greece to the west, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia to the northeast, Syria, Iraq and Iran to the southeast.

Read more about Turkey in our Turkey travel guide »

Featured journals from


Merhaba Turkey

by ashfsk

My experience in Turkey

Dec 2013  »  Turkey

Holidays to Marmaris, turkey

by holidayclick

Cheap holidays to Marmaris

Jul 2010 - Sep 2010  »  Turkey | United States


by zohar

Kackar, Turkey

Sep 2008  »  Turkey

Featured hotels in


TurkeyGloria Serenity Resort 

Acisu Mevkii Belek Serik Antalya
Belek 07506

Price (US$): $126 - $1234 / night

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Location. Gloria Serenity Resort is located on the beach in Belek and attractions in the region include Aspendos Basilica and Aspendos Theatre. Hotel Features. Dining options at Gloria Serenity Resort include 7 restaurants. A poolside bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves a complimentary buffet breakfast. Recreational amenities include a golf course. Also located on site are an outdoor pool, an indoor pool, a children's pool, and… more »


Bogazkesen Caddesi Tomtom
Istanbul 34413

Price (US$): $292 - $341 / night

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Tomtom Suites is a beautifully renovated 19th century former convent, now a stylish, all suite boutique hotel that is quietly tucked away in a side street in the cosmopolitan area of Beyoglu. Close to some of Istanbul s best nightlife, entertainment, culture and shopping, the hotel provides 20 extremely spacious suites, a panoramic rooftop terrace and bar, an inviting bistro and a library. Decidedly peaceful, the hotel has a relaxed air. Modern interiors enhance the building s architectural… more »

TurkeyDoubleTree by Hilton Istanbul Avcilar 

Cihangir Mah. D 100 Guney Yan Yol
Istanbul 34310

Price (US$): $180 - $463 / night

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Location. DoubleTree by Hilton Istanbul Avcilar is located in Istanbul and near the airport. Menekse Beach, TurkuaZoo, and Ataturk Olympic Stadium are local attractions. Other area points of interest include Florya Beach and Beylikduzu TUYAP Fair Center. Hotel Features. DoubleTree by Hilton Istanbul Avcilar's restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. A poolside bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves hot and cold buffet… more »

TurkeyGrand Hotel Gaziantep 

Ali Fuat Cebesoy Bulvari No. 32
Gaziantep 27090

Price (US$): $87 - $124 / night

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Location. Grand Hotel Gaziantep is located in the midtown area of Gaziantep. Hotel Features. Grand Hotel Gaziantep features a restaurant. Room service is available 24 hours a day. Recreational amenities include an outdoor pool, a health club, a sauna, and a steam room. This 5 star property has a 24 hour business center and offers small meeting rooms, secretarial services, and technology support staff. This Gaziantep property has event space consisting of a conference center and… more »

TurkeyGezi Hotel Bosphorus - Boutique Class 

Mete Cd 34 Taksim
Istanbul 34437

Price (US$): $153 - $479 / night

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Location. Located in central Istanbul, Gezi Hotel Bosphorus Boutique Class is within walking distance of Ataturk Cultural Center and Taksim Square. Nearby points of interest also include Dolmabahce Palace and Topkapi Palace. Hotel Features. Gezi Hotel Bosphorus Boutique Class's restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. A bar/lounge is open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves a complimentary buffet breakfast. Recreational amenities include a sauna, a… more »

Browse more hotels in Turkey »


Full name
Republic of Turkey

Southeastern Europe and Southwestern Asia (that portion of Turkey west of the Bosporus is geographically part of Europe), bordering the Black Sea, between Bulgaria and Georgia, and bordering the Aegean Sea and the Mediterranean Sea, between Greece and Syria

Geographic coordinates

39 00 N, 35 00 E

Area comparative

slightly larger than Texas

Border countries

Armenia 268 km, Azerbaijan 9 km, Bulgaria 240 km, Georgia 252 km, Greece 206 km, Iran 499 km, Iraq 352 km, Syria 822 km


7,200 km


temperate; hot, dry summers with mild, wet winters; harsher in interior


high central plateau (Anatolia); narrow coastal plain; several mountain ranges

Lowest point

Mediterranean Sea 0 m

Highest point

Mount Ararat 5,166 m

Natural resources

coal, iron ore, copper, chromium, antimony, mercury, gold, barite, borate, celestite (strontium), emery, feldspar, limestone, magnesite, marble, perlite, pumice, pyrites (sulfur), clay, arable land, hydropower


77,804,122 (July 2010 est.)

Ethnic groups

Turkish 70-75%, Kurdish 18%, other minorities 7-12% (2008 est.)


Muslim 99.8% (mostly Sunni), other 0.2% (mostly Christians and Jews)


Turkish (official), Kurdish, other minority languages

Government type

republican parliamentary democracy


29 October 1923 (successor state to the Ottoman Empire)

National holiday

Republic Day, 29 October (1923)

Chief of state

President Abdullah GUL (since 28 August 2007)

Head of government

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip ERDOGAN (since 14 March)

Internet country code


Internet users

27.233 million (2009)


99 (2010)

Ports and terminals

Aliaga, Diliskelesi, Eregli, Izmir, Kocaeli (Izmit), Mercin Limani, Yarimca

Other countries in the region