Turkey Holidays, Events, Climate and Sightseeing

Holidays, climate and national customs of Turkey

Public holidays

There are a number of public holidays that do not have a fixed date but are based on the time of Easter. Easter falls on the first Sunday following the first full moon after the beginning of spring. Lent, which lasts 46 days, begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday. Pentecost is 50 days after Easter. The Corpus Christi festival is celebrated on the 2nd Thursday after Pentecost. All Saints’ Day is celebrated for Orthodox Christians on the 1st Sunday after Pentecost, but for Catholic Christians the date is fixed on November 1st. On October 31, Protestants celebrate Reformation Day. The Halloween festival also takes place on this day.

Date Holiday
January 1 New Year
January 8th, 9th, 10 Islamic Festival of Sacrifice
April 23 Sovereignty and Children’s Day
1st of May Day of spring
May 19 Ataturk’s Remembrance Day
October End of ramadan
28th of October National holiday
November 10 Ataturk’s death anniversary

Source: Countryaah – Turkey Holidays

Cultural events

Date Event
January Camel fights in Selcuk
March International Jazz Days in İzmirKurdish New Year Festival

Dardanelles Victory Celebration in Canakkale

International Film Festival in Istanbul

April International Book Fair in İzmir.Culture and Art Festival in Giresun.

National Independence and Children’s Day in Ankara

May International music and folklore festival in SilifkeInternational jazz festival in Antalya

Various cultural events and international yacht festival in Marmaris

Festival in honor of the mystic Yunus Emre in Eskişehir

Seyit Batdalgazi Festival in Eskişehir

Selçuk Efes Kültür ve Sanat Festivali: Culture and art festival in Selçuk

Mesir) in Manisa

Wrestling competition in Kemer

Theater Biennale in Istanbul

Music festival in Kusadasi

Festival in Bergama

June July Festival in memory of the folk poet Karacaoğlan in MuşOpera and ballet

festival in the ancient theater of Aspendos Carpet and rose festival in Isparta

Oil wrestler competitions in Edirne

International culture and music festival in İzmir, Ephesus and Miletus.

Folklore Festival in Çandarlı

Concerts in Ayvalık, Bodrum and Marmaris

Culture Festival in Amasya

Aluçdağ Festival in Çamlıdere

Tourism Festival in Alanya

Festival in honor of the dervish Abdal Musa in Antalya

Van Kültür ve Turizm Festivali: Culture and Tourism Festival in Van

International Marmara Music and Folklore

Festival in Istanbul for tourism and art in Marmaris

Pamukkale festival in Denizli

Kırkpınar Wrestling in Edirne

Apricot Festival in Malatya Homeland Festival

in Hatay

Festival in honor of the mystic Hacı Bektaş Veli in Hacıbektaş

Çini Festivali: Ceramic Festival in Kütahya

Culture Festival in Kemer

International Art and Culture Festival in Istanbul

Navy Day on July 1st

International Culture and Art Festival in Bursa

Jazz Festival in Istanbul

August Celebrations in honor of Haci Bektas Veli (theologian and mystic) in Hacibektassailing regatta in the Gulf of Edremit

Troy Festival in Canakkale and Troy

almond harvest festival on the Datça Peninsula

Vintage Festival in Bozcaada

Foça Müzik ve folklore Şenlik: Music and Folklore Festival in Foca

Master Chef Festival in Bolu

September International Tango Festival in Marmarisbullfights in Ula in Muğla

Hittite Festival in Corum – Sungurlu, Alacahöyük – Boğazkale

International Music and Folklore Festival in Mersin

melon festival in Diyarbakir

Eğridir-Apple Festival in Isparta – Eğridir

Art and Folklore Festival in Kırşehir

industrial fair in Izmir

Cultural Festival in Bodrum

Art Biennial in Istanbul

Music Festival in Antalya

Film Festival in Adana

October Theater festival in Assos, grape harvestfestival in Şirince and Bozcaada

film festival in Antalya

November International sailing competition in MarmarisBlues Festival in Istanbul
December Nikolausfest in DemreDervish dances in Konya

Pistachio festival in Gaziantep

Nikolausfest in Kaş – Demre

Sporting events

National folk sports are the yagli güres, a wrestling match in which the wrestlers rub themselves with oil beforehand, which makes a firm grip almost impossible, the javelin competition Cirit Oyunu, in which galloping riders throw spears, as well as camel wrestling and bullfights.


triathlon in Alanya

National customs

  • The distinct bath culture of the Turks is celebrated in the so-called hammams. These baths offer a comprehensive opportunity for personal hygiene. In addition to the various forms of cleaning such as scrubbing with a rough glove, lathering and bathing, massages are offered. Mixed bathing is not allowed. If a man used to go into the women’s bathroom, he could be sentenced to death.
  • The Mevlana order comes from the Seljuq Empire. He became known for the singing dervishes with their high hats and wide skirts. The mystical poet, philosopher and founder of the order Mevlana believed in ecstatic, universal love. According to him, this state can be achieved by turning quickly in a circle. The dance symbolizes the rotation of the heavenly spheres and is accompanied by shepherds flutes. The right hand is held up in order to experience a blessing from above, the left hand is stretched towards the earth in order to pass this blessing on.
  • In the coffeehouses all over Turkey men meet to drink coffee, chat and play board games.
  • The bazaars are the best places to shop in Turkey. You can find anything in the big markets.
  • Shoes are not allowed in mosques. These must be deposited at the entrance. Out of respect, women should cover their heads with a scarf, arms and legs.
  • One should avoid exchanging affection in public.
  • The Âşık poem is a Turkish folk song that is accompanied by a saz (musical instrument).
  • The Turkish superstition describes an evil eye as a bad influence or curses from evil people. One can protect oneself from him with talismans, sayings and ceremonies.

Turkey: climate

Travel times

The ideas of what is meant by a particularly favorable travel climate depend on a number of factors. Pure cultural travelers certainly see the climate differently than people who want to spend a pure beach holiday, for example. The state of health or age can also play an important role. The ideal travel times are spring, summer and autumn. Usually winter is less suitable to visit.

Climate table

The following table shows a range of climate data for the country. It should be noted, however, that the climatic conditions in different regions of the country can differ considerably from one another and thus also from the values shown. In addition, such monthly temperature averages say little about the possible current minimum or maximum temperatures. It is not uncommon for average temperatures of around 30 °C to reach maximum values of 40 °C or even more on a number of days. The table therefore only provides a general overview of the climatic conditions in the country.

Month Average number of rainy days Mean maximum temperatures in (°C) Mean minimum temperatures in (°C)
January 17-18 0809 02-03
February 13-14 07-08 01-02
March 13-14 10-11 03-04
April 10-11 14-15 07-08
May 08-09 20-21 11-12
June 04-05 25-26 15-16
July 04-05 27-28 18-19
August 04-05 27-28 17-18
September 07-08 24-25 14-15
October 10-11 20-21 11-12
November 15-16 16-17 07-08
December 16-17 10-11 04-05

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