Turkey has a strategic location, between Asia and Europe. It is surrounded by four seas: the Black Sea to the north, the Mediterranean Sea to the south, the Aegean Sea to the west, and the Marmara Sea to the northwest, which creates a diverse climate and stunning nature. It is famous for its charming landscapes, waterfalls, forests, and beautiful beaches, which makes it a destination for many, from all over the world, whether for living or tourism.
What do you know about Turkey?
The official name is the Republic of Turkey (Türkiye Cumhuriyeti). The Minister of Turkish Foreign Affairs sent letters to the UN and other international organizations in May 2022, requesting that they use (Türkiye) instead of Turkey. The reason was that it represents and expresses the culture, civilization, and values of the Turkish nation. It was also to avoid a pejorative association with turkey, the bird. The UN agreed and implemented the request immediately. Turkey is a transcontinental country located mostly in the Anatolian Peninsula in Western Asia, and the smaller part in the Balkan Peninsula in Southeast Europe, which is the European part of Turkey.
National motto: Peace in the homeland, peace in the world (Yurtta sulh, cihanda sulh).
Official language: Turkish.
Population: 86,003,890 people, according to Wayback Machine 2022 statistics.
Government system: presidential republic.
President: Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Religion: Turkey is a secular country. There is no official state religion; the Turkish constitution believes in freedom of belief and religion.
Currency: Turkish lira.
Cities and provinces: Turkey is administratively divided into 81 provinces, then into districts. The governorates are administered by governors and the districts by sub-walis appointed by the state.
- Diar Baker.
Industries: textiles, food, beverages, electricals, automobiles, chemicals, leather.
Minerals: coal, charcoal, iron, lead, zinc, copper and silver. It is also considered one of the largest chrome producers in the world. There are small oil reserves in southeastern Turkey. Turkey also extracted about 82 tons of gold during the last ten years, in addition to the gold mines that were discovered recently.
Agriculture: cotton, tea, tobacco, olives, grapes, citrus fruits, vegetables, grains, and barley. Turkey is also one of the largest producers of hazelnuts in the world. It ranks seventh in the world and first in Europe in terms of the abundance of hot groundwater. In 2017, it ranked second in the world in terms of honey production, after China.
Energy: Turkey produces electricity from solar and wind energy. Recently, it has produced electricity from chicken manure. It also started working on the first nuclear plant in the country, to be built by the Russian company Rosatom. The project value is $21 billion, it consists of four units, the total capacity of each of which is 1,200 megawatts, and the operating life of the station will be 60 years. In addition to the gas fields that were discovered recently and the gas pipeline that will be obtained from Russia.
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Criteria for selecting Turkish cities in terms of preference for foreigners living
Turkish cities are not much different from each other in terms of the charming nature, wonderful climate, infrastructure, and the comfort of living, but there are several factors that attract foreigners to live in certain cities over others, including:
- Presence of foreign communities.
- Presence of foreign restaurants, markets and shops.
- Presence of international schools, educational centers and institutes.
- Presence of places of entertainment and nightlife.
- Availability of job opportunities.
- Cost of living, especially in terms of buying or renting real estate.
- Some foreigners prefer to live in seaside towns with beautiful tourist sites and stunning green landscapes to spend the summer holidays.
The best cities to live in Turkey for foreigners
In Turkish (İstanbul), it was previously known as Byzantium and Constantinople. It is considered the economic, cultural and historical center of the country. Istanbul extends on the Bosphorus Strait, and is located in both Europe and Asia, with a population of more than 15 million people, who make up 19% of Turkey's population. It is the most populous European city, and the fifteenth most populous in the world. Its area is about 5,313 km2, and it is divided into 39 districts.
Istanbul is at the top of the list of the best cities to live in Turkey, whether for Turks or foreigners, due to the large availability of job opportunities in it, as it is considered the economic center of Turkey. Although Istanbul has many disadvantages, its enormous advantages make many people prefer to live in. The percentage of English speakers in Istanbul is more than in any other city. It also contains many international schools. In addition, Istanbul contains the best universities, whether in Turkey or worldwide. It is characterized by a developed infrastructure. It contains most of the international companies and projects, which attract investors, businessmen, those who look for a better place to live and those who look for work from all over the world, especially after the announcement of Turkey’s Vision 2023, which included Turkey's huge strategic projects, including the New Istanbul Canal. Istanbul is also a tourist city, so living in it combines tourism and a comfortable life.
Its cool climate, compared to other Turkish cities, made it an attractive destination. In addition, it is characterized by green spaces that added a natural touch to it amid the urban life that it enjoys. It has a rich animal wealth, as its forests are home to 18 species of mammals and more than 71 species of birds.
A large part of the buildings located on the outskirts of Istanbul were built overnight, as a result of the city's rapid growth during the second half of the twentieth century. Istanbul is divided into two parts: the European part which is considered the financial and business part. It contains many vital neighborhoods such as: Maslak, Taksim, Beşiktaş and others, which contains most international companies, various restaurants, night clubs and luxury hotels. As for the Asian part of Istanbul, it is the quiet side that is covered with forests and green spaces, in addition to summer resorts and cottages surrounded by vast gardens of pine.
Istanbul contributes 38% of Turkish industrial production. It produces several types of agricultural products, including: cotton, fruits, olive oil, silk, and tobacco. Among the most prominent industrial products of Istanbul: food industries, textiles, oil derivatives, rubber, metal commodities, leather clothing, chemical products, pharmaceuticals, electronics, glass, machinery assembly, automobile assembly, transport machinery, paper, and alcohol industry.
Antalya is the fifth-most populous city in Turkey. It is the largest Turkish city on the Mediterranean coast outside the Aegean region. Antalya is Turkey's biggest international sea resort, located on the Turkish Riviera, which makes it the most famous tourist city in Turkey. It has a hot-summer Mediterranean climate; hot, dry summers and mild, rainy winters.
Agricultural production, in Antalya, includes citrus fruits, cotton, cut flowers, olive, olive oil and banana. This covers 65% of the fresh fruit and vegetable demand of the province. Since 2000, shipyards have been opened in Antalya Free Zone, specialized in building pleasure yachts, due to the huge demand on it, as the city is considered a summer tourist destination par excellence! Worth to be mentioned, Corendon Airlines and SunExpress are headquartered in Antalya.
There are urban parks and protected natural areas in the city, allowing people to have fun, rest and get closer to nature. Some of them are green areas around lake, pond and dam lakes, and some are highland and forest areas. The prime urban green areas include Antalya City Forest, Atatürk Park, Kepez City Forest. The largest amusement park in Antalya is Aktur Park. Other modern recreational areas include 3 aquaparks in the city, Konyaaltı, Lara beaches, Beachpark especially for summer, while Saklıkent also has facilities for skiing in winter.
According to official government statistics, it is also the second most popular place to buy real estate for foreigners, whether for investment or moving to permanent living. While you are walking around the city, you hear different and varied languages in the street, who prefer Antalya over other Turkish cities.
Numbeo reported that the cost of living in Antalya is 12% cheaper than Istanbul, and 43% less than London. In general, low prices for utilities and daily needs are what attract most expats to Turkey, regardless of where they choose to live, where most of them buy the property cash to avoid rented housing. The prices of cigarettes and alcohol have increased dramatically over the past five years, but food is still cheap compared to other countries. Also, the current exchange rate of Euros, Pounds and Dollars to the Turkish Lira is so encouraging for expats living in Antalya.
Antalya airport has earned acclaimed awards. It accommodates hundreds of domestic and international airlines every week; expats in Antalya have easy access to the rest of the country and the world, especially Europe. During summer, it is a round-the-clock international terminal for thousands of nationalities arriving for holidays, and even in winter, as it is very active.
Of course, the nightlife options are also endless. Most visitors to Antalya prefer Mediterranean style food, especially in summer; they enjoy Turkish meze, fresh fish, and seafood, along with good wine. Young people flock to the big, modern nightclubs, where they enjoy the latest hits and Turkish and Western music. Also, bistros are cool places to enjoy a snack to the tune of live music by a local band.
It is a port city in Muğla, southwestern Turkey, at the entrance to the Gulf of Gökova. Known in ancient times as Halicarnassus, the city was once home to the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, also known as the tomb of Mausolus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Bodrum enjoys a Mediterranean climate; warm summers and mild winters. July is the hottest month of the year, while January is the coldest month in the city.
Bodrum's economy was mainly based on fishing and sponge diving, but tourism has become the main industry in it since the late 20th century. The abundance of visitors has also contributed to Bodrum's retail and service industry. It is also famous for its leather products that are sold in its markets and constitute a good source of income for the city and its merchants. Milas–Bodrum Airport and Kos International Airport are the main airports that serve the city.
With the tremendous development in transportation and infrastructure, Bodrum opened up to the world in a wider way, which led to its worldwide fame for the beauty of its nature and its coasts. The result was flocking a large number of tourists to the city in order to enjoy the charming atmosphere and nature of the city. Today, the tourism sector has become one of the most important economic sectors on which the city relies, based on the beauty of its beaches and the popularity of its products.
Many tourist, cultural and artistic festivals are held in the city of Bodrum, including the traditional wooden boat races that take place in October of each year, the bicycle festival that takes place in May of each year. Many artistic events are also held, including the Turgutreis International Music Festival, which takes place in June. These reasons and many others made it a destination for retirees and wealthy people around the world, where the New York Times called it the Turkish version of Saint-Tropez.
Tourism is considered one of the main pillars of Bodrum, among the most famous tourist attractions of Bodrum are:
Mausoleum of Mausolus: it is one of the seven ancient wonders of the world, built by Queen Artemis in memory of her husband.
Mindos Gate: it is one of the two gates that were used to the ancient city of Halicarnassus. This gate contained three towers, one of which was destroyed, and two towers are still standing today.
Bodrum Amphitheater: it goes back to the fourth century AD, to the Hellenistic era in particular, and consists of a platform, a place for the orchestra, and seating for the audience, which can accommodate more than 13,000 people.
Bodrum Castle (St. Peter's Castle): A historic castle built by the Knights of Rhodes in the fifteenth century AD. The castle was used for several purposes during the past centuries, as it was a prison, a hospital, and a mosque. Today, it is a historical museum.
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