Turkey is claimed to be the bridge between the East and the West and with its mix of influences from the Mediterranean, the Middle East and the Balkans, it's easy to see why. Churches rub shoulders with mosques, gypsy festivals are as well attended as football matches and Roman temples co-exist with Islamic monuments.

It's diverse and exciting and, for a short haul trip from the UK, impressively exotic. The unique city of Istanbul should definitely be on your travel itinerary. Here you will find many important architectural masterpieces, the incredible covered market and lively bars and restaurants.

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As well as having plenty to see and do, you'll find some incredible food in Turkey. Mediterranean, central Asian and Middle Eastern influences meld to create many delicious dishes, from mezze to kofta to baklava.

Cuisine, adventure, relaxation, history and nightlife – what more could you want? {more content available from current page}

Top 5 things to do in Turkey