Turkey in winter
Winter in Turkey is a relatively short season, with chilly evenings and a few rainy days, however, most days throughout this period are sunny, many who live here all year round say it’s the best time of the year to visit!
During the winter, sitting in a beachside restaurant, drinking an ice-cold beer and tucking into a big plate of meze is still possible and the bonus is its minus the crowds. You will find there are many perks to visiting a summer destination offseason. Many of the resort hotels, restaurants and bars are closed, but life does still exist and you get a more authentic break virtually tourist free! Here are just a few of the reasons to visit coastal Turkey in winter…
Oludeniz beach in January – deserted!
This idyllic beach is virtually crowd-free! Some visitors in August moan about the amount of tourists, the Full English breakfasts on offer or the fact some of the popular resorts are just too busy. Mid-summer the beaches can be very crowded, the local buses packed, the pubs blare loud music and tourists pack the local historic sites and streets of coastal resorts. It’s to be expected. But come the winter off-season months, all is tranquil, the mayhem of summer subsides, the beach deck-chairs are packed away and in resorts like Oludeniz and Calis you can relax and unwind.
Turkey in Winter
Everything gets cheaper in Turkey in winter
Prices get cheaper. Turkey is cheap any time of the year if you are converting Euros, Pounds or Dollars. But the influx of tourists during the summer can push prices up. Come winter, the hotels that are open offer significantly reduced prices. It’s possible to get a centrally located hotel room for 2 people, on a bed and breakfast basis for less than £40 a night.
Come summer you are looking at more than triple the cost, if not more. Top that off with many restaurants and bars offering cheaper menus also flights off season are offered at a better rate, although less frequent and possibly via Istanbul or Antalya, prices drop significantly to fill seats. If you’re on a budget and after excellent value for money, visit off-season, you’re on to a winner!
Play a little backgammon with a local.
Spend time with the locals. If you’re seeking a more authentic breakaway or looking for a glimpse of local life, visit between November and April. Many locals on the coast work in tourism, therefore, during the summer they are busy and don’t get the time to relax and meet others.
But in winter it is the locals that fill the streets, drinking cay (tea) and playing backgammon in cafes, fishing along the harbour front, walking their dogs or enjoying a drink. It’s in a Turk’s nature to be friendly and hospitable, most are happy to strike up a conversation given a chance. Visitors get the best tips on where to go, what to do and places to see from the locals.
Take the kids to play in the snow before hitting the beach!
Enjoy the countries beauty. People often overlook the beauty of Turkey. You can’t miss the clear blue skies and the wonderful mountains, but often during summer, it is difficult to fully take in the scenery and charm.
Many don’t realise that Turkey gets cold, in fact, that from around the beginning of December the mountains surrounding resorts like Oludeniz are beautifully snow-capped.
Grab the kids, leave the sunny beach behind for a day and head out towards Antalya from Fethiye. Within an hour you are a few feet deep in snowfall, a great opportunity to do a little sledging. Why not build a snowman or do as the locals do? Throw a couple of deckchairs in the car, arm yourself with a BBQ, stop off at Migros and buy a few pre-made kofte (meatballs) or some slices of sucuk (spicy sausage). Buy a loaf of bread and have a BBQ lunch before returning home before the sun goes down!
Turkey in Winter
New Year in Turkey
Break with tradition, come and explore! The city of Antalya is a great place during the winter. Many of the all-inclusive resorts and boutique hotels in the city centre have some fabulous deals off-season, especially over Christmas and New Year. Many expats indulge in at least a few days in Antalya during winter as the cost is so reasonable, what are you waiting for?!