10 things to do during the Eid al-Fitr holiday in Turkey
ISTANBULThere are only a few days left until Eid al-Fitr, which this year is a bumper nine-day public holiday in Turkey. There is plenty to do over the course of nine days across the country, and Hürriyet’s jury* of 10 travel experts have whittled the options down to 10 in particular.
1. Paragliding in Fethiye’s Babadağ
The Babadağ Mountain, located near the Ölüdeniz beach and Hisarönü in the southern resort of Marmaris, has a height of about 6,500 ft (1,960 m). Breathtaking panorama and stable weather make paragliding from Babadağ Mountain the best option for paragliding in the country, with exciting 360-degree turns, wingovers and even thermal flows.
2. Dipkarpaz / Northern Cyprus
Dipkarpaz is a town on the Karpass Peninsula in the northeastern part of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC). The town’s surroundings are famous as the wildest and most unspoiled parts of the island. The municipality’s territory features the Karpaz National Park, which is home to the Karpass donkey and some of the finest beaches on the island.
3. Hatay tour
Hatay is a province in southern Turkey on the Mediterranean coast. Antakya is the biggest district of the province, rich of religious and historical tourism with its St. Pierre Church, Antakya Castle, historical Antakya houses and Roman mosaics in its Archeology Museum. Besides its cultural properties, Antakya is noted for its regional cuisine, especially for a sweet after-dinner treat called künefe.
4. Pokut Highlands / Rize
The Pokut Highlands offer a visual feast to visitors with their view over the Kaçkar Mountains and local cuisine. The breathtaking Pokut is on the peak of mountains, above the clouds, and is surrounded by a luscious pine forest.
5. Lavender harvest in Isparta
Now is the perfect time to walk around ravishing lavender gardens and to join lavender harvest. To enjoy this purple heaven, you can visit the Kuyucak village of Isparta until the end of July. Kuyucak supplies as much as 93 percent of Turkey’s lavender needs.
6. Istanbul’s historic peninsula
The Historic Peninsula is the top tourist area in Istanbul, including popular sites such as the Topkapı Palace, the Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, the Hippodrome, the Basilica Cistern and the Sultanahmet Mosque.
7. Kiteboarding in Muğla’s Akyaka
With its 3-kilometer long beach, thermal wind, shallow and clear water, Akyaka is the top place in Turkey for kiteboarding. After a day full of kiteboarding, you can also go and freshen up in the Azmak River.
8. The Manyas Bird Paradise National Park in Balıkesir
The Bird Paradise National Park is 20km southwest of Bandırma and around 50km north of Balıkesir, adjacent to the bird lake. The Bird Paradise National Park is a marvel for all bird admirers, as well as an important stop for migratory birds. It is estimated that 246 species of birds visit the Bird Paradise National Park.
9. Jeep Safari in the Taurus Mountains in Antalya
The Jeep Safari in the Taurus Mountains of Kemer is one of most popular outdoor sports activities in Kemer. Holidaymakers may experience and enjoy travelling on dirt, dust and stone-paved roads on a Jeep Safari with incredible rural views, village life, cascading waterfalls, and summits.
10. Bicycle touring in Gökova Bay in the Aegean
The 295-kilometer long bicycle trip starts at Halikarnassos and ends at Knidos, taking in truly heavenly scenery where blue meets green along the way.
* Jury: Mehmet Yaşin (Columnist for Hürriyet Seyahat), Saffet Emre Tonguç (Columnist for Hürriyet Travel), Aynur Tartan (TV producer, journalist), Yücel Sönmez (Hürriyet Travel Editor), Bahar Akıncı (Columnist for Hürriyet Travel), Erdal İpekeşen (Ankara representative of Doğan Burda), Sinan Çakmak (Editor-in-chief of Atlas Magazine), Yıldırım Güngör (Columnist for Atlas Magazine), Ahmet Zeki Apalı (President of Tourist Guides’ Association), Nilay Örnek (journalist).