How much do you really know about Turkey?

The Turkish people only travel on camels. There are no vehicles in Turkey and so the people must rely on these magnificent desert animals, not only for the quick trips to the grocery store, but also to travel thousands of miles to visit family and friends.

Just kidding. Camels are actually very rarein Turkey, but this is a common misconception about Turkish transport. There are many misconceptions and incorrect conclusions made about Turkey based on exaggerated news, movies, and bloated stories. Here are some facts to test how much you really know about Turkey.








Turkey is NOT an Arab country. In fact, less than 2% of the population consists of Arabs, which is less than the percentage of Arabs in France or Brazil. Therefore, the people don’t speak Arabic; they speak Turkish, which is similar to the English alphabet but has some extra letters. Furthermore, Turkey is one of the few transcontinental countries in the world, meaning that it spans over two continents – Europe and Asia.

Turkey is NOT a desert. This is probably the main reason why camels don’t really feature there. Rather, it is a peninsula fringed by gorgeous beaches, spotted with dense forests and spiked with towering mountains. The white sandy beaches are a major tourist attraction during the summer and for good reason. Who wouldn’t want to swim in turquoise water and catch a glimpse of a sea turtle or tan in the warm sunlight? The lush forests are home to most of Turkey’s unique wildlife ranging from wild cats to brown bears. Additionally, Mount Ararat, which is traditionally believed to be where Noah’s ark rested, is also located on the eastern border of Turkey. In truth, less than 1% of Turkey is actually desert.









Turkey is NOT unsafe. Moreover, research shows that the crime index in Turkey was less than that in the United States, Belgium, or Canada in 2016. While there has been an increase in terror attacks in Turkey, France had only one fewer attack in 2015. Also, according to the US Department of State, Turkey doesn’t even rank in the top ten countries in the world suffering from terror attacks. With that said, Turkey is more politically unstable than it has been in many years, most of this instability being concentrated in the eastern part of the country near the Syrian border. Thus people must be vigilant in their destination choices just like people must be wise in choosing whether to ride a single or double humped camel.

Turkish people are NOT rude. On the contrary, like most Middle Eastern cultures, the Turkish people are known for their warm culture. This can be displayed in their kindness to often buy a stranger a cup of tea. Whenever they are stopped in the street, they will go out of their way to help someone. Moreover, everyone is considered family. Moms will even put sunscreen on a wandering child at the beach, and when introducing one another’s kids, they are never referred to as a friend, but rather a brother or a sister.  







Turkey is NOT primitive. Of course, it doesn’t look like a five-star hotel everywhere, but which country does? Turkey is the fifth largest export of jeans in the world and the largest fig producing country. It is also known for producing motor vehicles and electronics. Per the World Bank, Turkey’s GDP is ranked  17th, above Sweden and Switzerland. Although some of the cities in Eastern Turkey can be classified as “developing”, the western cities like Istanbul and Izmir look similar to cities in Europe, consisting of thousands of apartment blocks and skyscrapers.

So, like the phrase “don’t judge a book by its cover” states, don’t judge Turkey based on mistaken beliefs, faulty information or camel gossip. Page through its chapters filled with exotic geography, rich culture and amazing people. And don’t forget to read the chapter on the Turkish camels and their vital role in the primitive, desert land of Turkey.


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  1. great job!!!! xx

  2. Thank you Talitha 🙂

  3. I loved this! Nice job, Melika! =D

  4. Thanks Maria

  5. Great job! Two of those misconseptions got me~ 🙂

  6. Thanks Josiah. I hope it wasn’t the one about camels 🙂

  7. I enjoyed reading this article, Melika. 🙂 Good job!

  8. That’s super interesting!

  9. Thank you for the encouragement, glad you enjoyed it and found it interesting.

  10. Hey this was awesome! I live in Turkey and find all of these true as well 😀 Thanks for saying what we’re all thinking.