1) Benedict XVI has declared June 2008-June 2009 the year of St. Paul in celebration of the 2,000th anniversary of the saint's birth. Turkey will have a strategic role during the commemorations, since Tarsus (in the Southeastern Anatolia Region) was the birth place of the saint.
2)The first church built by man (St. Peter’s Church) is in
Antioch (Antakya), Turkey.
3)The oldest known human settlement is in Catalhoyuk, Turkey
(7th Millenium B.C.)
4)Ephesus and Halicarnasus (the place for the two of the
Seven Wonders of the ancient world) are in Turkey.
5)St. Nicholas, also known as Santa Claus, was born in Demre,
on Turkey’s Mediterranean Coast.
6)Noah’s Ark landed on Mount Ararat (Agri Dagi) in Eastern
7)The last meal on Noah’s Ark, a pudding of sweet and sour
taste (asure), is still served throughout Turkey.
8)Turks introduced coffee to Europe.
9)Turks gave the Dutch their famous tulips.
10)Istanbul is the only city in the world built on two continents.
11)Tradition in Turkey says that a stranger at one’s doorstep
is considered "God’s guest" for at least three days.
12)Turkey is noted for having one of the three most famous
and distinctive traditional cuisines in the world.
13)The First Ecumenical Council was held in Iznik, Turkey.
14)Writing was first used by people in ancient Anatolia.
The first clay tablets in the ruins of Assyrian Karum (Merchant
Colony) date back to 1950 B.C.
15)The oldest tin mine was found in Göltepe, 60 miles south
16)The first Neolithic paintings found on man-made walls
are in Catalhöyük, Turkey.
17)Anatolia is the birthplace of historic legends, such as
Homer (the poet), King Midas, Herodotus (the father of history),
and St. Paul the Apostle.
18)Julius Caesar proclaimed his celebrated words, "Veni,
Vid, Vici (I came, I saw, I conquered)" in Turkey when
he defeated the Pontus, a formidable kingdom in the Black
Sea region of Turkey.
19)Female goddesses like Cybele dominated the Central Anatolian
pantheon for thousands of years before these supernatural
powers were transformed to male gods.
20)The Hittites sold Abraham the cave where he buried his
wife Sarah, when the Israelites came to Palestine.
21)The first church dedicated to Virgin Mary is in Ephesus.
22)Cherry was first introduced to Europe from Giresun (Northern
23)Turkey has hundreds beaches and marinas which have the
"Blue Flag" (an European award for the best clean
water) on the Mediterranean and Aegean.
24)The first recorded international treaty in the world was
the Treaty of Kadesh between the Hittite and Egyptian Empires,
Hattusilis III and Ramses II, in 1284 BC.
25)The oldest known shipwreck on Earth was found and excavated
in Uluburun near Kas, in the Mediterranean region of Turkey.
26)In 640 BC, for the first time in history, coins made of
electrum were used by the Lydian king Croesus in Sardis, in
Aegean region of Turkey.
27)King Midas lived in Gordion, capital of Phrigia.
28)Alexander the Great cut the Gordian knot near Ankara.
The double knotting technique used in Turkish rugs is also
called as Gordian Knot.
29)The Garden of Eden in the Book of Genesis was said to
be watered by a river which separated into four streams as
it left the garden; two of them the Tigris (Dicle) and Euphrates
(Firat) rise from the mountains of Eastern Turkey.
30)Early Christians escaping from Roman persecutions found
shelter in Cappadocia.
31)The Seven Churches of Apocalypse are all situated in the
Aegean region of Anatolia; Ephesus, Smyrna (Izmir), Pergamum,
Thyatira (Nazilli), Sardis, Philadelphia (Alasehir) and Laodicea.
32)Sultan Beyazit II dispatched the Ottoman Navy to bring
the Jewish people who were expelled from Spain in 1492 and
they were brought safely to the Ottoman lands.
33)Istanbul has the historical building of Sirkeci Train
Station. This was the last stop of the Simplon-Orient Express
- "kings of trains and train of kings" - between
Paris and Constantinople (Istanbul) from 1883 to 1977. Agatha
Christie was one of the passengers of this famous train.
34)The number of species of flowers in Turkey is approximately
9,000, of which 3,000 are endemic. In Europe for instance
there are 11,500 species. This shows the richness of flora
and fauna in Anatolia.
35) The famous Trojan Wars took place in Western Turkey,
around the site where the Trojan horse rests today.