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  • Writer's pictureVinan Nair

Turkey - East meets West

Turkey is a country that straddles the divide between Europe and Asia, offering a rich tapestry of history, culture, and natural beauty. It serves as a bridge between different civilizations and continues to be a fascinating and dynamic nation.

  1. Capital: Ankara is the capital of Turkey, while Istanbul is the largest city and a major cultural and economic hub.

  2. Geography: Turkey's diverse landscape includes mountain ranges, fertile plains, and a lengthy coastline along the Mediterranean and Aegean Seas. The country is known for its varied geography, including the Anatolian Plateau and the mountainous regions of eastern Turkey.

  3. History: Turkey has a rich and complex history, including being the center of the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires. Istanbul, formerly Constantinople, served as the capital of both empires. The modern Republic of Turkey was founded in 1923 by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk after the fall of the Ottoman Empire.

  4. Culture: Turkey has a unique blend of Eastern and Western cultural influences, a result of its geographical location and historical heritage. The majority of the population is Muslim, and Turkish culture is known for its hospitality, cuisine, and traditional arts like calligraphy, ceramics, and rug-making.

  5. Language: The official language is Turkish. While Turkish is the primary language spoken, there are also several minority languages and dialects spoken by different ethnic groups.

  6. Cuisine: Turkish cuisine is renowned worldwide and is characterized by dishes like kebabs, baklava, Turkish delight, and a wide variety of mezes (small dishes). Turkish tea and coffee are also integral to the culture.

  7. Historical Sites: Turkey is home to numerous historical and archaeological sites, including the ancient city of Troy, Ephesus, Hierapolis, and the unique underground cities of Cappadocia. Hagia Sophia and the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

  8. Tourism: Turkey is a popular tourist destination, attracting visitors with its cultural heritage, beautiful beaches, and historical sites. The southwestern coast, often referred to as the Turkish Riviera, is known for its resorts and pristine coastline.

  9. Economy: Turkey has a diverse economy with industries such as textiles, automotive, electronics, and agriculture. Istanbul serves as a major financial center.

  10. Government: Turkey is a democratic republic with a parliamentary system. The country's political landscape has undergone significant changes in recent years, leading to varying levels of political stability.

  11. Wildlife: Turkey is home to diverse wildlife, including the Anatolian leopard, brown bear, and many species of birds. The country is making efforts to preserve its natural environment through national parks and conservation initiatives.

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