Turkey, also officially the republic of Turkey, is a country in Eurasia bordered by Syria and Iraq to the south; Iran, Armenia, and the Azerbaijani exclave of Nakhchivan to the east; Georgia to the northeast;Bulgaria to the northwest; and Greece to the west.
Turkey is one of the most fascinating countries in the world. It is a nation with amazingly wonderful landscapes for sightseeing, strong history, rich culture, scrumptious cuisines, famous artifacts, hospitable people, Mediterranean sunshine, and much more. Here are some interesting, meaningful, and fun facts about Turkey that will astonish you.
26 Fun and Interesting Facts about Turkey
- Most people believe Istanbul to be Turkey’s capital, which is a misconception. The actual capital of Turkey is Ankara long since the war of independence in 1923.
- Before Ankara, Istanbul (formerly known as Constantinople) was the capital of the three greatest empires of Turkey i.e. Ottoman, Byzantine, and Roman empires for over 2,000 years.
- Istanbul is the world’s only city which bridges two continents. These continents are Asia and Europe.
- About 97% of Turkey is in Asia and only 3% in Europe.
- Turkey possesses 82,693 mosques. Most of them are located in its largest city, Istanbul.
- One of the most interesting Turkey facts is that it has a city named Batman.
- Most of the people don’t know that Turkey’s official name is not Turkey. Since 1923, it is formally known as the Republic of Turkey.
- Leonardo da Vinci planned out a bridge project for the Bosporus to permit people to travel conveniently between Asia and Europe. However, the bridge was never built.
- Turkey’s Grand Bazaar is one of the oldest and greatest covered markets in the world. This bazaar consists of sixty streets and over five thousand shops.
- Many historical people were born in Turkey including Saint Paul the Apostle and Aesop. Even Santa Claus i.e. St. Nicholas was born in Patara. On Turkey’s Mediterranean coast, there is a church dedicated to him.
- Citizens of Turkey, also known as Turks, never used surnames until 1934, when the surname law was adopted.
- Surprisingly, the Turkish alphabet doesn’t have the letter Q, W, and X.
- Out of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, two are located in Turkey. These wonders are the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus and Temple of Artemis at Ephesus.
- Istanbul’s Tünel is the world’s shortest passenger terminal. It was inaugurated in 1875 and is the third oldest after the underground tunnels of London and New York.
- Turkey is so rich in cultural heritage that thirteen of its places have been marked on the World’s Heritage Sites’ list of UNESCO, and a massive number of locations, about sixty-two, are on its tentative list.
- Turkey is the world’s greatest producer and exporter of hazelnuts. It produces about 75% of the world’s total hazelnuts.
- Don’t get fooled by its pleasant weather. Turkey is home to striking and picturesque mountain ranges, mostly covered in snow in the winters.
Palandöken is Turkey’s highest mountain with a height of 10,200 feet. Moreover, it has Europe’s longest ski run.
- Muvaffakiyetsizleştiricileştiriveremeyebileceklerimizdenmişsinizcesine is the longest word in the Turkish language. It is a seventy-letter long word and it means, “As though you are from those whom we may not be able to make easily as a maker of unsuccessful ones.”
- Turkey’s national sport is oil wrestling, also called grease wrestling. In this unique game, two big wrestlers drenched in olive oil grapple beneath the hot sun. This is one of the funny facts about turkey
- Turkey is rich not just in cultural heritage but also in the cultivation of plants and flowers. It has as many species of flower as the rest of Europe. There are over 9,000 species of flowers in Turkey, out of which 3,000 are endemic. It is said that a new type of flower is discovered in Turkey after every ten days.
- Most people around the world believed that Netherlands is the first home of tulips. This is not true because Ottomans from Turkey are the one who gifted tulips to Europe and all over the world.
- Apart from plants, Turkey has about 80,000 different species of animals, including the loggerhead sea turtles, which are at risk of extinction. The İztuzu Beach is a massive breeding ground of this endangered animal.
- There is a signature Ottoman sweet dish which is made up of boiled chicken meat, sugar, rice flour, and milk dusted with cinnamon. It is called tavuk göğsü, meaning chicken pudding.
- A very unknown and interesting fact about Turkey: The famous ancient city of Troy, where the Trojan War took place, is located in western Turkey.
- A part of the southeastern Turkey coast was gifted to Cleopatra by Marcus Antonius as a wedding gift.
- There is a unique and attractive natural complex of mineral springs, known as Pamukkale or Cotton Palace, near Denizli city in Turkey.