Set in an environmentally protected enclave, this mellow resort nestles between pine-clad headlands on the Lycian peninsula. It's not just savvy humans that love it – loggerhead turtles paddle through pale blue ocean to lay their eggs beneath the coarse sand of a 3km beach backed by groves of orange, lemon and eucalyptus, plus charming old farms.
Hikers and bikers will love Turkey's rugged peaks: legendary Mt Ararat; the rugged Taurus range; the forested Kackars. Add beautiful 500km walks like the Lycian Way or ancient St Paul's Trail. Sea kayak over ancient underwater ruins at Kekova, canoe the Xanthos River's eco wonderland, get white-water kicks on the Coruh, and enjoy world-class windsurfing at Alcati.
Turkey's body-tingling bath-and-rub routine (aka Turkish baths) can be post-activity ache-relievers or just a blissful treat - often in beautiful historic Ottoman surroundings, such as Antalya's 13th century Sefa Hamam or 16th century Sokollu in Edirne. The locals may go for a full monty of twisting and being walked over - but you decide your comfort level!
Despite its sun-baked image, Turkey’s mountains offer wonderful snowy enclaves for skiers and walkers. From December to April, powder junkies can hit pine-forested slopes at Sarikimis near Kars, Cappadocia's rugged Erciyes Dagi or the lake-ringed Davraz Dagi in western Anatolia. The Kackars offer cross-country skiing, while Cappadocia and Mt Ararat are great for snow-shoeing.
Voyages on gulets – traditional sailing boats based on former sponge-diving vessels – are traditionally called 'Blue Cruises' (mavi yolculuk), referring to the sea and sky that envelop guests along the Turquoise Coast from traditional start point Fethiye. Drop into secluded coves, idyllic island anchorages, ancient sites and beguiling fishing hamlets, with exciting inland excursions thrown in.
Where else can you kayak over the ruins of a submerged classical city? Or paddle by steep rugged cliffs into deserted sandy bays ripe for snorkelling, or coves backed by ancient ruins awaiting stretch-your-legs exploration. For company, you might have dolphins or sea turtles. End each day camping on wild beaches beneath starry skies.
Blockbuster sites like Ephesus and Pergamum (aka Pergamon) are magnificent - but so are less-crowded gems: the mountain-top sanctuary of Zeus at Labraunda; Eastern Anatolia's 10th century Armenian ruins; painted churches in Cappadocia's volcanic valleys; eerie stone heads scattered across Mt Nemrut; and Gobleki Tepi – a Neolithic site 6500 years older than Stonehenge.
Turkey's beaches turn sand and sea into sophisticated art forms. Patara combines 18km of white strand with glorious ancient ruins, while the Turquoise Coast offers dreamy coves like Kaputas and boho camping idylls like Kabak. For seclusion, hit the Teke peninsula and its sandy pauses on the Lycian Way. Want sand-fringed islands? Try Gokceada and Bozcaada.
Skip tourist menus and dodgy kebabs! Chow on real local cuisine at simple diners (lokantas) and taverns (meyhane), or amid the fire and smoke of street stalls. You'll discover a vibrant culinary tradition - and the food will be better and cheaper! Look too for distinctive Turkish wines such as elegant red Kalecik Karasi or floral white Emir.
Turks aren't necessarily as keen on the truncated conical hat as famous fez-wearers like Tommy Cooper. Revered leader Kemal Ataturk actually banned them in 1925 in his drive to make Turkey a secular modern society, judging fezes backward garb on a par with the veil for women. Tourist shops sell them - but don't consider them popular local wear.
Turkey's fantastic coastline sadly has its share of fly-and-flop resorts low on ethical cred and high on ugliness and environmental impact. All-inclusive resorts get particular black marks - research suggests less than 10% of daily tourist spend goes to local permanent shops outside the holiday bunker. You’ll enjoy Turkey more if you get out and connect with local life.
Ankara is Turkey's capital (no, it's not Istanbul), but this Anatolian metropolis is a bit 'meh' - a place for business and acting sophisticated rather than enjoying an atmospheric historic vibe. If you are passing through, though, visit the superb Museum of Anatolian Civilisations in a lovely 15th century building, and potter the lanes by the 9th century Citadel.