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Expert travel guides and holiday advice

Sun-drenched beaches, lively all-inclusive resorts, ancient wonders and cosmopolitan cities stacked with east-meets-west cultural diversity: Turkey is a year-round European holiday hotspot for a reason. Whether heading to its southern resort towns of Bodrum and Antalya to soak in the Aegean Sea and catch some winter sun, chasing sensory overload in the country’s biggest city, Istanbul, or planning a bucket-list hot air balloon ride over Cappadocia’s ethereal fairy chimneys, the Independent’s travel experts are here to help. We’ve pulled together Turkey’s best holiday destinations, its top hotels, stand-out beaches and compiled the ultimate travel guides to inform your next trip.

FAQs about Turkey


Turkey’s hectic economic and cultural capital (if not its political one) is a fascinating city to explore, thanks to its eclectic historic influences and its position straddling Europe and Asia across the Bosphorus Strait. Architectural marvels await at every time, from the Byzantine Hagia Sophia, featuring a soaring 6th-century dome, to the Roman remains of the open-air Hippodrome. Check our guides on what to do in Istanbul, plus the best places to stay.

<p>View from the Süleymaniye Mosque to the Golden Horn, Istanbul</p>

The ultimate guide to Istanbul

The centre of Turkish history, cutting-edge art and affordable and authentic cuisine, Istanbul is rich with mini-neighbourhoods to explore. Vicky Smith gives a steer on where to start

48 Hours in Istanbul by Simon Calder

A city steeped in history, and which brings humanity together: Istanbul is a crossroads for the world, where Europe meets Asia and where the Mediterranean is linked to the Black Sea through the Bosphorus.

<p>This city represents colour and history like no other</p>

Best hotels in Istanbul for location and history

Mary Novakovich finds the best places to stay in the city where Europe meets Asia


This thriving resort city on Turkey’s Turquoise Coast on the Mediterranean is beach holiday heaven, whether in the sweltering summer months or cooler off-season period, when temperatures can still hit highs of 15C. Alongside its pristine beaches, blue waters and Old Harbour, Antalya also features must-visit Roman ruins, including Hadrian’s Gate, built in honour of the Roman emperor’s visit in 130AD, and the 2nd-century Hidirlik Tower.


Known for its unique landscapes consisting of otherworldly “fairy chimneys” – towering, cone-shaped rock formations – and Bronze Age cave dwellings and churches carved into rock faces, Cappadocia makes for a one-of-a-kind holiday destination. One of the most popular activities is taking a sunrise hot air balloon ride to catch an aerial view of the fantasy-like vistas, while visits to Goreme, Uchisar and Urgup give a closer look at the region’s cave dwellings, rock fortresses and open-air museums.

Getting to Turkey and back

From various UK airports, airlines fly direct to Istanbul, Dalaman, Antalya, Bodrum, Ankara and Izmir. Once the last stop on the original Orient Express, Istanbul is still accessible from London on a fully overland adventure – though it will take at least four days to complete the journey by train.

Getting around Turkey

Within Turkey itself, long-distance buses are often the simplest and most cost-effective method of getting around, though internal flights are also an option, with nearly 50 cities offering domestic flight connections. Trains are notoriously unreliable, but car rental rates are reasonable for those keen to traverse the country’s highways (be aware they drive on the right-hand-side). Big cities are furnished with metro and tram systems.

More on Turkey

Lux Bodrum's lobby has stunning sea views

Lux Bodrum proves that Turkey’s luxury hotel game is on the up

With a private beach, Insta-worthy infinity pool and outdoor cinema, this sea-front resort proves that Turkey is ready to welcome back discerning holidaymakers

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