Turkey taking centre-stage

As the partner country for this year’s ITB Berlin, Turkey will be a main focus of the exhibition right from the opening ceremony.

Entertainment troupe Fire of Anatolia will kick-off the show in spectacular fashion and, as one of the largest exhibitors at the fair, Turkey will be showing both traditional and modern aspects of its culture.

Displays in an area covering 3,000 sq m will exhibit a cultural treasure trove, a wide range of tourism products, holiday regions in all their variety and culinary delights from this popular travel destination.

One of the highlights will be Istanbul. Visitors will have the opportunity to experience the diversity and dynamism of the European Capital of Culture on the Berlin Exhibition Grounds, and see how Istanbul spans east and west intellectually and culturally with both art and cultural attractions.

There will also be a fascinating, richly-ornamented portal of a reproduction of the Divriði Great Mosque. Built in 1229 in the province of Sivas, Anatolia’s oldest architectural testimony to Islam has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

And in Hall 10.2 another World Heritage Site can be admired in the shape of traditionally-built houses from Safranbolu.

Seeing, smelling and tasting is what Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar, the world’s oldest shopping centre, is all about. Visitors can experience the hustle and bustle of a covered bazaar with all their senses in six different shops. For those eager for more, there are culinary specialities from every Turkish region on offer at the Sahan restaurant next to Hall 3.2, as well as two Turkish snack bars between Halls 3.2 and 4.2.

David Ruetz, head of ITB Berlin, said: “This popular travel destination has been represented on the Berlin Exhibition Grounds since 1968. ITB Berlin offers the ideal platform for Turkey to build on its standing in world tourism as a year-round holiday destination for holidaymakers and incentive travel organisers.”

Ibrahim Yazar, deputy director general of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the Republic of Turkey added: “As far as travel is concerned, Germany is Turkey’s most important source market. We are very much looking forward to presenting Turkey in the role of official partner country at this year’s ITB Berlin, particularly as this year Istanbul will fascinate visitors as the European Capital of Culture.”

Turkish Airlines is offering a special ten per cent discount on all flights to ITB Berlin 2010.