It turns out we have been saying it wrong. It isn’t ‘Turkey,’ it is the ‘Republic of Turkey.’ Even so, here is our list of 10 amazing Turkey facts to blow your socks off. If you have the travel bug, then you need to pack your bags and get to this country, because it is super interesting. For instance, Turkey exports the majority of the world’s hazelnuts, last names weren’t really a thing until the 1930s, and the Greek writer Homer was born in Turkey! However, Turkey is also the top spot for foreign journalists to be imprisoned, and contrary to popular belief, camels are not native to this country.
10 Santa Claus was Turkish?!
Saint Nicholas (the inspiration for Santa Claus) was born in Turkey.
9 Glimpse an Endangered Species
The loggerhead turtle makes one of Turkey’s coastlines its nesting grounds.
8 Turks Must Have Great Lung Capacity
Especially considering that they have 130 mountains reaching peaks of over 9,800 feet.
7 Turkey is Artsy
Hit up Istanbul where you can shop, browse galleries, and see the Biennial art exhibition.
6 You can Ride the Marmaray Metro
Speaking of Istanbul, it has an underground tunnel that leads visitors across the border.
5 The First Farmers Were in Turkey
Researchers trace the start of agriculture to Turkey some 11,000 years ago.
4 A Holy Haven
Turkey is a historic Christian place, with cities such as Antioch and Kayseri.
3 It’s a Bit Stuck in the Past
Turks engage in wrestling matches in which both opponents are covered in olive oil.
2 Turkey Could Give Hollywood a Challenge
As a matter of fact, cinema is superb in Turkey; they make most film money from domestic movies.
1 The Flora is Incredible
Turkey is a wonderland for new plant species, and the country attracts hundreds of bird species as well.
+ Bonus Knowledge Nuggets
Shopaholics rejoice: Turkey has one of the world’s biggest shopping malls – the Istanbul Cevahir Mall. The people of Turkey also have savory things for dessert, such as chicken pudding! And history buffs will find 13 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in this country.