We’re in the throws of planning our travel adventure for next year, and a name that keeps coming up for me – or a country, rather, is Turkey. Largely because I have this picture of a Turkish cave house on my screen saver, and have always been intrigued by the idea of cave houses, and I’m working hard on my other half to convince him that we need to include a trip to Turkey in our plans.
Of course the girls aren’t going to be entertained by looking at cave houses for too long so here are five other things in Instanbul that I think would make Turkey holidays a perfect travel options for families.
The Miniaturk Park is a great way to kick of your Turkey Holidays, located on the Golden Horn banks and contains more than a hundred scaled models, which are 1/25 of the original Anatolian, Istanbul, and Ottoman structures. Spanning an impressive 60,000 metres square, it is the largest miniature park in the world. To top it all off, it features a labyrinth, playground, and life-size chessboard, making it an ideal venue for the kids. The park is usually open daily from 9am to 5pm.
I know how much my girls love LEGOland’s mini park, so I’m pretty confident this one will go down a storm – added to which it gives us a glimpse of Turkey through the ages without having to travel the whole country. We can literally pick any spots to find out more about.
The sight of dolphins and other sea mammals is enough to light up anyone’s face, and the Istanbul Dolphinarium offers just that. It hosts dolphins, playful seals, the white whale and walruses, and is a great venue for the whole family to enjoy the time in Istanbul. There are great activities for visitors of all ages, which range from scuba diving for adults to dolphin therapy sessions for kids with special needs and a range in between. It sounds like an amazing day out.
We’ve visited some amazing aquariums in Cape Town, Perth and even a tiny one in Brighton, but few have the amazing interactive experience that aquariums like the one in Durban, and seemingly this one offer: an actual show with the sea-mammals. It’s mesmerizing!
You can’t go to Turkey and not have some spa time, so it’s worth looking to see if you can find a spa that accepts children. Suleymaniye Hamami will welcome children over four, and up to six they are free. Over six they pay adult fares. You may be more limited to when you can come with children, timings wise, but it’s worth looking at. I know my Ameli would feel like a princess if she was able to visit a spa or Turkish bath!
Play n Learn
Play n Learn looks another great venue for the kids and as a home schooling family, I love that we can escape the heat and have a learning experience at the same time. This spot is designed for kids of up to 6 years old and has lots of things to keep them amused, including dramas, dimensional toys, puppet shows, art and craft, and play dough. It’s also only 5 minutes away from Taksim Square and situated right behind the German Hospital, so there’s plenty of tourisim opportunity to sandwich between the play.
From the delightful sea creatures of the Istanbul Dolphinarium, the miniature models at Miniaturk to the captivating activities at Play n Learn, Istanbul is a great city if you are travelling with kids. They are bound to enjoy every moment due to the wide range of activities. On being a memorable place for them, Istanbul, easily makes the list and I have a fair bit of arm twisting to do!