usually brings perfect weather throughout
Turkey, with long sunny days
and not much rain.
brings tourists: May is
the businest month for individual
tourists who like to travel on their
own or in small-group
tours and stay
hotels, so prices are
highest and advance
reservations are essential.
Tulip Festival may still
be affording wonderful splashes of
floral color throughout the metropolis.
Also in Istanbul, the Hıdrellez
Festival, held in Ahırkapı during the first week in May, is
the modern expression of an an age-old Anatolian
celebration of spring. More...
May 1st is traditionally the unofficial Labor/Workers' Day in Turkey. Istanbul's Taksim Square is a major traditional locus of commemorations, and in recent years has been the scene of confrontations between various groups and police—sometimes violent. The authorities routinely limit access to the Taksim area, and even most of Beyoğlu, by street and public transport on May 1st, making access to hotels in the Taksim area difficult—plan ahead!
May is the perfect time to take a Blue
Voyage yacht cruise or visit
the torrid Southeast,
it's still chilly in central-east
and northeast Anatolia.
season begins in earnest in
May, and thus also do the sound
and light shows at the Blue
Mosque in Istanbul.
They last until October.
and Youth & Sports
Day (Atatürk'ü Anma
ve Gençlik Spor Bayramı, May
is a national holiday, commemorating Atatürk's
birthday (1881) and his arrival
in Samsun in
1919 to begin the War
of Independence that resulted
in the foundation of the Turkish
on May 29, Istanbul Conquest
Day, recall the conquest
of the city by the Ottomans from
the Byzantines in
The Islamic minor
festival of Regaip
Kandili falls in May
in 2014, and the festival of Miraç Kandili in 2014 and 2015. More...
—by Tom Brosnahan