It’s up there among your holiday must-dos, watching the balloons in Turkey… or whirling dervishes if you like.
Or did you think that we were talking about the balloons above those rock-hewn villages in Cappadocia?
No, I’ve yet to savour that pleasure despite my oul’ pal Onur at Turkish Airlines flagging it up every time we meet.
And I will.
The only balloons on show when we visited Istanbul though were the dervish dancers in the early evening of a very busy day taking in the Great City’s sites and sounds.
Bazaar, yes that too, but back to the dervishes and while they are enmeshed in Turkish culture and spirituality they are an acquired taste.
Entering the stage they freeze like statues before building up to a crescendo where they rotate their robes circulating as they go…
Hence the whirling dervishes. A kinda twirl power if you like.
To give it all context you can learn what it all means on the boards leading into the show.
And see for yourself up close the costumes and the history.
All of which came back into focus with the launch of our old friends’ Wendy Wu Tours Turkey special.
Treasures of Turkey
Treasures of Turkey is a 16-day special from £2,690pp with varius 2023 & 2024 departures.
So you’ll get return flights, 4* accommodation, all meals, all transportation in destination.
There will be expert guiding, all sightseeing and entrance fees and authentic cultural experiences.
And Wu’s better at giving us a bullet-point rundown of what we’ll get.
Wu hu, Turkey’s for you
- Explore Istanbul’s iconic landmarks, like the Blue Mosque & Hagia Sophia
- Experience Istanbul’s UNESCO-listed Fener & Balat districts
- Enjoy a private cruise along the Bosporus Strait
- Visit the moving war memorials of the Gallipoli campaign
- Explore the ancient ruins of Troy and Pergamon
- Discover the well-preserved roads, facades and theatre of Ephesus
- Sample local wines and olive oil in the pretty village of Sirince
- Visit Magnesia and enjoy an exclusive guided tour of archeaological sites which are not usually open to the public
- Marvel at the spectacular calcium pools of the ancient spa city, Hierapolis
- Explore the ancient Greek city of Perge and the Roman ruins of Aspendos
- Spend 3 nights in Cappadocia soaking up the fantastical topography and exploring villages carved into the unusual rock formations and enjoying those balloons in Turkey.
Yes, the gloriously coloured canvas globes above your head amid those rock-hewn homes.
But also the whirling dervishes… each to their own and it’s a culture we love.