Turkiye is one of the most fascinating countries to visit. It sits on the border between Asia and Europe, and has been the site of many civilizations throughout the ages.
Türkiye offers visitors a cornucopia of experiences, combining both the East and West, old and new. It is the country where the oldest known megaliths from the Neolithic period exist, at Gobekli Tepe.
Various Türkiye tour packages from Malaysia are available. However, which ones do you choose?
Here, we look at what the best cities are for Türkiye tourism. These cities are some of the most popular in the country.
Many mistake Istanbul as the capital of Türkiye, but it’s actually not. Istanbul is nevertheless one of the major cities in Türkiye, and one of the most popular in Türkiye for tourism.This is because Istanbul used to be the seat of power for the Ottoman Empire, who ruled Türkiye and beyond from the 15th to the 19th century.
You’ll be able to witness the glory of Ottoman architecture in places like the Topkapi Palace, a vast complex where the Ottoman Sultans used to live.
Istanbul is also where you can see the Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque, both shining examples of Ottoman craftsmanship. Other historical attractions here include the Basilica cistern, a cavernous ancient underground water storage area, and the Church at Chora.
Istanbul is also the perfect place for shoppers, who can explore both the Grand Bazaar and Spice Market with thousands of shops selling local products.
Pergamum is an ancient coastal city that’s located in the North Aegean region. It’s popular among the local Turkish people who flock here during summer to enjoy the sea.
One of the first places you’ll want to see is the Pergamum Acropolis, the ruins of what used to be a Hellenistic city located on Pergamum’s hillside. One of the most stunning ruins here is the theatre, built into a steep slope and large enough to hold 15,000 people during its heyday. The Acropolis is about 5 kilometers away from the modern town or Bergama, and you can reach it either by car or cable car.
The Acropolis is also where you’ll find the Temple of Athena ruins, and the ruins of the Pergamum library which used to house more than 200,000 copies of books.
Another separate historical site in Pergamum is the Asclepion, which used to be a center of medicinal healing during the Roman era. In addition to a collonaded street, you’ll find what’s left of a library and several temples.
Ephesus was once a thriving city during the height of the Greco-Roman era and was home to a quarter of a million people. Today, you can see the impressive architecture that they left behind.
In addition to being a center for trade and commerce, Ephesus also attracted religious pilgrims who came to pay homage at the Temple of Artemis. Although there is not much left of the Temple of Artemis, you’ll be able to see plenty of statues and other artefacts related to the worship of this Goddess at the Ephesus museum in town.
Additionally, there’s also the theater, the temple of Hadrian, and the terraced house area to explore at the ruins of Ephesus. All through modern Ephesus, you’ll also be able to observe the remains of aqueducts that used to supply water to the city.
Unlike many of the other cities which are tourist attractions in Türkiye, Pamukkale is known for its natural features rather than its archaeological ones. The most obvious attraction to visit here is the travertines, which are terraces formed by calcium deposits from the area’s hot springs.
These salt deposits fan out just like white cotton candy, which is why Pamukkale in Turkish means cotton castles. Some parts of these white cliffs are home to thermal pools, which you’re free to bathe in.
The area is also home to the ancient town of Hierapolis, which has an impressive ancient theater and antique hot springs which you can visit too.
Cappadocia from afar looks like something from a children’s fairy tale. The city is surrounded by interesting and twisting volcanic rock formations. Over the centuries, various groups of people have burrowed into these soft volcanic rocks to make homes and other buildings for themselves.
As such, many of the attractions at Cappadocia are related to these rock formations. For example, you can visit the Churches of Göreme, the village of Göreme, and the underground cities of Kaymaklı and Derinkuyu.
One of the most popular ways to appreciate the natural rock formations in Cappadocia is to hitch a ride on a hot air balloon and see them from the skies.
Due to Türkiye’s rich history, there are many historical and archaeological places of interest in Türkiye. In fact, you may not be able to see them in just one trip. Do consider planning your Türkiye tour from Malaysia with us, and visit all these interesting cities in one go.