The Original Santa Claus was born in Patara

St. Nicholas, known as Santa Claus today, was born and lived in Demre (Myra)  on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast.  The village contains the famous Church of St. Nicholas with the sarcophagus believed to be his tomb. 

The Dutch got their famous tulips from Turkey.  Bulbs were first brought to Europe from Istanbul in the 1500’s and became so popular that by 1634 Holland was infected with “tulipmania” - people invested money in tulips as they now do  in stocks. In the early 18th century, countless tulips of all varieties adorned Istanbul. It was a period of peace, lavish entertainment and creativity now referred to as “The Tulip Age,”and the tulip remains a symbol of Turkey

The first man ever to fly was Turkish.  Using two wings, Hezarfen Ahmet Celebi flew from the Galata Tower over the Bosphorus to land in Usküdar in the 17th century. 

Turkey has almost as many species of wild flowers as the rest of Europe combined – more than 9,000 species, nearly 3,000 of which are indigenous only to Turkey.