Our Top Places to Visit in Turkey

Deluxe homes, rugged cliffs and multiple seas: Turkey awaits.

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Istanbul, Turkey

The Black Sea, the Aegean Sea (just try and pronounce it) and the Mediterranean Sea surround Turkey, making for spectacular vistas and sandy beaches. The spectacular natural terrain surrounding the country makes for excellent family fun holidays, and proves once and for all that Turkey is far more than just a big chicken, as its doubters might claim. 

You can arrive early in the year for the warm spring and stay until late autumn, enjoying temperatures that climb so high in summer that you can cook an egg on the floor. Just make sure to clean it (the floor, not the egg… well, maybe just don’t eat eggs that were cooked on the floor). 

And while you’re wandering down those gorgeous coastal promenades and checking out the sunset, think on the country’s rich and fascinating history, littered with tales of Romans and Ottomans at the confluence of East and West. Tuck into the flavoursome local specialties (you’ll find some real Turkish delights) as you explore a traditional and eclectic cuisine. As well as recommending some of our expertly vetted holiday homes in the country, we at Plum Guide are happy to share some of our favourite places to visit in Turkey. 

Marmaris

This Mediterranean resort town is packed with deluxe places to stay with pools and views of the water. Consider staying in one of our exquisite homes, including the mountainside Villa Bahar and The Bay of Kumlubuk.

Villa Bahar, Plum Guide home in Turkey

Villa Bahar, Plum Guide home in Turkey

Stroll along the pebbly beach draping the seafront and lie on a deck chair to work on your tan. Aside from the beach, you’ll find myriad other attractions here. On the eastern side of the town, the Marmaris Milli Park is riddled (in a good way) with waterways and lovely picnic spots in the shade of the trees. Clamber up the hills and take in the stunning views of the sea. There’s a children’s area in the park that’ll keep the little ones entertained, and a harbour packed with deluxe yachts. 

Back by the coast, you’re spoilt for choice for beaches. You’ve already spent the afternoon at the Downtown Marmaris Beach, so now it’s time to visit the nearby stretches of the Amos Beach, the Kumlubuk Beach and the Cleopatra Beach.

Istanbul 

Keep asking everyone in your group what the capital of Turkey is, and you can gloat away when they say Istanbul. Hopefully, there won’t be any clevercloggs spoiling everything by getting it right with Ankara. The reason people think Istanbul is Turkey’s capital is because it is one of the cultural and historical beacons of Europe (well, sort of Europe …at least they play international football in the European groups). By far one of the most popular places to visit in Turkey, among the highlights are the Hagia Sophia mosque and the Blue Mosque, ecclesiastical icons that can be found splayed across all the postcards and gifts. Visit the Topkapi Palace, and find out how it was constructed back in the 15th century, when it was at the core of the Ottoman Empire. 

Topkapi Palace, Istanbul, Turkey

Topkapi Palace, Istanbul, Turkey

If you're in Turkey with kids, bring them (or go alone if you’re secure enough with yourself) to the Miniaturk, a model village with great attention to detail. For more family-friendly activities, there's also the LEGOLAND Discovery Centre, the Istanbul Dolphinarium and the Istanbul Akvaryum.

Kalkan

This is another spot jam-packed with some of our excellent homes, which we send experts to check out so you won’t encounter any disappointments. Try the Rose Berry, its pool offering views of the sea, and the Magenta Rhythm. The town lies on the Mediterranean Coast in the southern part of the country. Amble along the beach and make time for lunch at somewhere like the Yali Beach Club & Restaurant or the Kalamar Beach Club. The Kalkan Dive Centre gives you the opportunity of breathing under water and panicking until you have to come up again.

Rose Berry, Plum Guide home in Turkey

Rose Berry, Plum Guide home in Turkey

After a big old lunch, wobble down the 200 steps leading to the Kaputaş Beach and relax beneath an umbrella in this secluded inlet. Since you’re here, make sure to also laze around on the multiple other beaches in the area. There's Akcagerme Beach, Kalkan Public Beach and Patara Beach to choose from.

Magenta Rhythm, Plum Guide home in Turkey

Magenta Rhythm, Plum Guide home in Turkey

Fethiye

We might have mentioned this already, but beach-hopping really is one of the best things to do in Turkey. Move west to the beaches and resorts of Fethiye, making sure to drop in at the yacht-filled port on the so-called Turquoise Coast. You’ll also get a slice of history (so you’ll have to get up from the beach once or twice) in the form of the 4th-century Tomb of Amyntas. It is one of many rock tombs that are carved into the cliffs.

Fethiye, Turkey

Fethiye, Turkey

You can also combine the ingredients of beach and historical ruin in the city of Antalya, which has a wonderfully intact set of Roman ruins, and Alanya, which has the square-shaped Alanya Caslte.

Greek and Roman ruins

The country is, of course, too large to cover in one journal post. However, we’d suggest you get in touch with its ancient side. There are countless historical places to visit in Turkey. Delve into the archaeological ruins of Ephesus that date back to the 10th century B.C. See the ancient city of Aphrodisias, dedicated to the Greek goddess of love. You shouldn’t miss Laodicea, containing one of the Seven Churches of Revelation, and an intriguing history relating to Christians and Jews.

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