Young old country

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“Travel makes one modest, you see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.”

There are numerous ‘bridges’ throughout the world; some are made by man, others by nature; some cross spaces, others link cultures. Turkey is one of these bridges; it unites West and East, bringing from each to the other the possibility of knowledge and integration.

Three seas surrounded Turkey: the Black Sea, the Mediterranean Sea, and the Aegean Sea. These contain three precious geographical elements: the Marmara Sea, the Straits of Istanbul and the Çanakkale. Although they are remarkable, these three elements are part of a mountainous terrain also containing many rivers and lakes. The country’s climate is temperate, but with a Mediterranean influence. Thus, the summers are hot and dry, but the winters can be snowy in some regions.

The population amounts to about 75 million, with the most populous cities being İstanbul, Ankara, Izmir, Bursa, Adana, Konya, Antalya, Gaziantep, Mersin and Şanlıurfa.

The official language is Turkish, containing musical and exciting language with many precise features and rules that make Brazilian Portuguese, one of the languages I speak,  seems almost illogical.

Turkey is divided into seven areas: the Marmara, Aegean and Mediterranean Regions, Central Anatolia, Eastern Anatolia, Southeast Anatolia and the Black Sea. Each area has its own particular climatic, cultural and geographical characteristics.

Politically, present day Turkey, is young. The Republic of Turkey was established only in 1923, after the end of The Turkish War of Independence, initiated by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk and his colleagues against the occupying forces of the proxies of the Allies – namely Greece on the Western front, Armenia on the Eastern, France on the Southern and with them, the United Kingdom and Italy in Constantinople (now Istanbul. )As a consequence, the monarchy was abolished in 1922, and, in 1923, Atatürk became Turkey’s first president.

Although the country is young, the love story of humans for these lands began long ago. Vestiges of human settlement have been found in Anatolia, dated to 100,000 BC. The first organised human agglomeration is also there. Çatalhöyük   has retained the evidence of a large Neolithic and Chalcolithic proto-city settlement. Çatalhöyük existed from approximately 7500 BC to 5700 BC, since then people have been  walking, trading and governing on these lands Great civilisations like the Hattians, Hittites, Phrygians, Lydians, Lycians, Carlos, Persians, Greeks, Romans and Ottomans flourished and perished letting in the landscape, culture, and people the reminds of their time in Anatolia.

I can résumé Turkey saying the people are friendly, the food tasty, the sounds unique, and the scenery breathtaking. Now, join me on our virtual trip and, if you like, you are welcomed to send comments and questions.

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