Not every country is blessed with cultural heritage and history, but Turkey has much of it. Located on the border of Asia & Europe, the marvellous nation recently changed its name to Turkey in 2021. Popular among tourists for its beautifully carved mountains, stunning beaches, and historical excellence, Turkey stands among the top places on everyone's bucket list. Many cultural sites in Turkey have been designated as UNESCO World heritage sites, from the Great Mosque and Hospital of Divriği, the old Hittite capital of Hattusa. These are the top places to visit in Turkey in December.
If you plan to take your next trip to Turkey, time it properly. Make sure you travel in the winter as the weather is mildly cold, and you can enjoy the sunny days.
So, don’t miss the opportunity to visit Turkey in December, pack your bags and fly to Turkey with us.
Make your winter break memorable with winter attractions in Turkey. From refreshing in the seawater and exploring the sky on a hot air balloon to soaking yourself in hot springs and sunbathing on the beach, Turkey has it all for the tourists.
Cappadocia is one of the best December destinations in Turkey. Why? Well, one reason is that the area of volcanic eruptions and mountains is covered with snow. Secondly, visitors tend to visit this place to experience the hot air balloon ride.
Running year-round, the hot air balloon ride is best in the winter as you can see the magical 360-degree view of the snow-covered mountains and valleys. This is the perfect destination for honeymoon couples and those who like to experience the chilly winter weather. The mountains serve as a perfect backdrop for clicking pictures. For stays, there are cosy cave hotels.
If you are fond of Santa's ride, you can experience the thrill of it in Turkey. During the winter months, Lake Çıldır gets all frozen up with snow-covered mountains all around, making it the perfect destination for ice activities like ice walking, fishing, sledging or snowmobiling. The high-altitude lake is the second biggest in the country, spread over 123 square kilometres.
You can experience the thrill of horse-sleigh trips and ice-fishing trips that the locals run. On top of that, you can also rent a bicycle, snowmobile, and other modern-day transport to run on the ice. These arctic-like lake conditions stay for 8 months, making it ideal for sightseeing in Turkey during December.
For the lovers of skiing, the Uludağ is the point of the match. Ranked among the busiest locations near Istanbul, Uludağ is a Paradise for skiers. Easily reachable via road from the city of Bursa or via the longest cable car in the world, Bursa Teleferik, Uludağ has a resort that offers all the facilities for skiing, snowboarding, and more.
You can rent the key equipment from the resort. There are 16 elevators that can take you to the preferred slope, and there are 28 km pistes fit for skiers of all levels. If you want to stay, there are several hotels near the resort area, too.
For those who like to capture scenic nature shots, the Yedigöller National Park is the quintessential location. Located 42 km from Bolu, the park is the home to Büyük Göl (Big Lake) and Nazlı Göl Lak lakes that have broad sidewalks along the shore. You can sit here and relax or click pictures with the awesome backdrop.
Though it is best to camp in the summers, you can engage in snowshoe hiking if you come here in the winter. At the beginning of winter, the park is flooded with Autumnal coloured leaves, which creates a colourful and balmy environment for you to relax. Local events in Turkey in December, such as the Izmir World Fair, are another plus for your visit.
Istanbul is a location in Turkey that is crowded heavily in the summer. So, it will be an intelligent decision to visit it in the winter. One reason is the crowd, and the second is the accommodation pricing. Due to the lack of crowd, hotels in the city decreased their accommodation prices significantly. Therefore you will get better facilities at an affordable rate.
For sightseeing, you can visit the historical sites in Turkey in winter, such as the mosques in the Sultanahmet area and around the Grand Bazaar area. Moreover, you can witness the beauty of Topkapi Palace and the Hagia Sophia without much crowd. In the end, the street food of the city, such as Sahlap and roast chestnuts, is the frosting on the cake.
For the lovers of Skiing, this is another spot. How is it different from Uludağ? It sits at a height of 2,200 metres, making it the highest skiing spot in Turkey. Mount Palandöken is seven kilometres away from the city of Erzurum and serves as the perfect destination for skiers of all expertise.
From beginner to intermediate skiers, all can showcase their skills on 22 pistes of slopes. There are 13 lifts and a cable car to take you across all the ski runs. The skiing path is treeless, so no chance of any accident. Lastly, you can try paragliding if skiing is not enough.
There are several visiting spots in the North East of Turkey, and Kars serves as the best getaway point for all of them. This far North East city of Turkey is a perfect winter escapade for tourists. When you are here, don't forget to visit the UNESCO World Heritage site named Ani.
Though the place has ruins of the church spread across the plateau, it is the perfect describing element of the past that highlights the fight for the control of the trade centre. Other than that, Kars has some mosques and a castle for you to witness. The local roast goose dish is also a speciality.
If you opt for any of the Turkey holiday packages in December, this Eastern Express train trip will surely be a part of it. The best thing about this train is that you get to see the beautiful scenery containing the landscape of high plateaus and craggy mountains covered with snow. A bad part of this is that you have to make the booking in advance.
As this is one of the most opted train rides in winter by the Turkish people, there is another train named Turistik Doğu Ekspresi that follows the same route but stops for 2 hours between its journey. You can take this 24-hour remarkable train ride between Ankara and Kars.