WINTER SUN | A holiday in muslim sunny country TURKEY
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Catch the winter sun! | A holiday in muslim sunny country TURKEY   


Those who want to escape the winter of the Northern Hemisphere don’t have to go far afield. A sunny winter holiday in Turkey might be just the thing you’re looking for!

Or if you want to avoid the Christmas celebration, a sunny winter holiday in a Muslim country can be an alternative worth exploring as Christmas isn’t celebrated here with the exception of a few decorations here and there.


There are a few destinations around the Mediterranean coast that offer sun-seekers the opportunity to get a tan during December and January. Even a swim in the sea is still possible during these months. A prime location is certainly Antalya, one of the southernmost resorts of Turkey, also home to large contingents of retirees from the UK and mainland Europe. They have escaped the cold climate of their home countries and exchanged it for the sun-drenched shore of Turkey, often buying property in places like Bodrum, Didim and Marmaris.

Naturally prices are somewhat cheaper during this season and one can get a bargain holiday without the crowds. For those who like the sun, but are not keen on scorching temperatures, this is the best way to have a healthy holiday in the sun. You can find relatively empty beaches and yet the hotels and restaurants in the area are fully staffed and ready to serve you, probably with a lot less hassle than in the summer months. Basically, a sunny winter break can be a lot more relaxing than if you did the same thing in the summer. Prices is about $350 per week all inclusive, in 5 star hotels. Some agents also offer free air transfer with this price. It's unbelievable isn't it?

If you actually like winter, but feel you want to have both a winter and summer holiday in the same spot, Turkey offers mountainous destinations by the sea, which allow for snow sports one day and water activities another. Saklikent is near Antalya and allows for daytrips to find good facilities for skiers and snowboarders alike.

But even if you’re looking for a real winter holiday in a different location from the Rockies or the Alps, Turkey is a good alternative. In recent years, Turkey’s winter sport resorts have established their place among their European counterparts, but still offer affordable prices and lack the crowds.

The prime location for skiing is probably Uludag near Bursa. It has been well known among Turkish winter sports fans for many years, but has been steadily improved with the influx of foreign tourists. It is therefore the biggest resort in Turkey.
The Bolu mountains are half-way between Istanbul and Ankara and among pine forests is the resort of Kartalkaya. Like in all other resorts, there are good slopes, hotels, restaurants and skiing instructors.

Kastamonu, not far away from the Black Sea coast offers the resort at Ilgaz Mountain, in the middle of a large National Park. The facilities consist of a hotel, chalets, two ski-lifts, a baby lift and a chair lift. An additional attraction is the hunting
People living in Ankara might go to the resort of Elmadag (“Apple mountain”), which allows for plenty of relaxation in the fresh air, a small hotel, lifts, restaurants, discos and more.

Palandoken near Erzurum has been transformed into Turkey’s second important location, partly due to the country’s application to host the Winter Student Olympics in 2011. Hence the area has seen massive investments in winter sport facilities, hotels as well as bars, restaurants and other après-ski activities.

For those who want something very special on their winter holiday, Cappodocia is a must. In winter, this area, which was formed by two large volcanic eruptions, is probably even more breathtaking than in the summer with its caves, which were inhabited in former times. Even nowadays, people still live near or on the mountains, a good example how mankind has adapted to and made the best of nature’s surroundings. There are underground cities to visit, the famous Peri Bacalari (“Fairy Chimneys”) and it is certainly one of the world’s attractions not ever to be missed.

So, if you want to combine the sun and the snow and an interesting experience, Turkey might just be the place for you. Flights from Europe serve most destinations with connecting buses several times a week.

  Winter holiday  
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