Turkey is a country located both in Europe and in Asia. Part of the Turkish territory is the Balkan region of southeastern Europe and the most part of Turkey is the Anatolian peninsula in western Asia.

This country has borders with Armenia, Azerbaijian and Iran to the east, Iraq and Syria to the southeast, Cyprus and the Mediterranean Sea to the south, Georgia to the northeast, Bulgaria to the northwest, Black Sea to the north, Greece and the Aegean Sea to the west.

There are a great variety of climates in the country depending of the topography and the latitude. The zones at the coastline of the Mediterranean Sea and Aegean Sea have a typical mild Mediterranean climate with sunny and hot summers and rainy winters.

Whereas the zones around the Sea of Maramara like Istambul have a climate with some rains during summer and cold winters. The coldest climate is in the Black Sea region, nevertheless in this zone temperatures usually never are below 5ºC.

The political system of Turkey is secular, unitary, democratic and constitutional republic. Despite the Turkish stereotype as those showed in the film “Midnight Express”. Turkey is a country very modern which is member of important Western Nation’s organizations like the Council of Europe, NATO or the G20 industrial nations.

Turkey has around 70 millions people most of them are Muslim (99%). Turkey is a country with very hospitable people, great food and a rich history, which is manifested by the wonderful monuments that are scattered throughout the country.

The Anatolian peninsula, the territory where Turkey is now; was inhabited from very ancient times. There are vestiges of human settlements from the Neolithic age. Between XVIII and XIII centuries BC the Anatolian peninsula was occupied by several groups such as Phrygians, Hitties, Lydians and Lycians.

From 1200 BC the region was occupied by Aeolian and Ionian Greeks and later during the VI and V centuries, all the peninsula was conquered by the Persian Empire. During this period were constructed important monuments like the Temple of Artemis in Ephesus or the Mausoleum of Mausolos in the current Turkish territory of Bodrum; both monuments were considered wonders of the ancient World.

Around 334 BC Anatolia was divided into several parts because of the destruction of the empire of Alexander the Great. Nevertheless, all the little kingdoms of Anatolia fall against the Roman power which ruled until 324 when the empire was divided; then Constantinople (the actual Istambul) became the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire.

This period was a time of apogee to the country and mainly to Istambul, where wonderful buildings were constructed.

But, after Mohammed birth, the Islamic dynasties emerged and they challenged the power of Byzantium; being the Seljuk Turkish Empire the first that ruled in the actual Turkey, Iran and Iraq. The Seljuks were attacked by the Crusades and the Mongols; but they resisted and allowed the birth of the powerful Ottoman Empire, which began in the XIII century and took Constantinopla in 1453.

The apogee of the Ottoman Empire was reached with the Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent who extended his empire to Vienna. Between XVII and XIX centuries the empire declined. During the World War I at the beginning of the XX century Otomans fought with Germany, but they were defeated, marking the end of the Turkish Ottoman Empire.

Greek took Izmir and Istambul causing the wrath of the Turks, who began the Turkish war of Independence leaded by Mustafa Kemal Pasha. The Turkish forces repelled the occupying armies in 1922; in 1923 the Republic of Turkey was officially recognized in the Treaty of Lausanne. The Leader Mustafa Kemal was the first president of the new state.

During the World War II Turkey supported Allies and during the cold war received a great military and economical support of USA. Today Turkey has one of the fastest growing economies in the world, being the main economical sectors, industry, tourism and the agricultural sector. It is the most occidental country of the Muslim nations.

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