Nestled in the heart of Turkey, Elazig is one of the most desirable destinations for holidaymakers. This beautiful provincial capital was once a small enclave with a population of 20,000, while today it stands as one of the most thriving cities in the country with a population of more than 300,000. A temperate Mediterranean climate means there’s average temperatures of around 25 degrees Celsius in the summer months of July and August, while winter averages balance at around freezing point. Sun-seekers are advised to venture here in August, where balmy temperatures make it a must. SunExpress offers flights to Elazig between the spring and autumn months, meaning you have plenty of opportunities to get away from it all.
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Elazig Airport (EZS) lies within close proximity of the city itself, making quick work of transfers when you’re short on time. First constructed as a military base in the 1930s, the airport was re-purposed for commercial and civilian use in 1960. Since 2009, the airport has been an important hub of international travel. Several airlines operate flights to connect Elazig with popular Turkish cities including Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir. SunExpress also offers regular connections to destinations across Germany, including the cosmopolitan metropolises of Dusseldorf, Hanover and Frankfurt.
Once you arrive at Elazig Airport, you can make quick use of WLAN hotspots to keep on top of emails and social media profiles via your smartphone, tablet or notebook. What’s more, reliable shuttle buses ensure fast transfers to and from the airport. If money isn’t an option, taxis and rental cars can be arranged at the terminal itself.
In the city of Elazig, there’s a large bazaar that’s an ideal spot for shoppers looking to indulge in a spot of retail therapy. The city is well known for its delicious coffee, renowned for its intense depth of flavour. Enjoy a steaming cup of this local speciality as you people watch and recharge your batteries before venturing off on a shopping spree to stock up on keepsakes to take back home to friends and family. In addition to local markets, the AKG Shopping Centre plays host to a raft of high-street stalwarts and designer outlets.
If you’re looking to take in some culture, make sure you schedule in a visit to Harun Sanat Galerisi, a renowned art gallery that’s packed to the rafters with awe-inspiring pieces. There’s also plenty to keep you occupied once the day is done, with an amazing choice of restaurants and eateries serving up a selection of home-grown delicacies and Turkish favourites. Once dinner is done, why not venture off to one of Elazig’s many bars, or cap off your day with a movie at one of the many cinemas in the city.
Those travelling with the family should definitely make some time for a visit to Lake Hazar, only 22 kilometres away form the city limits. This bathing lake offers stunning scenery, with plenty of parking space if you’re going by car. There’s also ample space for picnics, with tables set away from the sun so you can dine al fresco at any time of day. Fantastic flight connections to the city of Izmir also make a day trip to Turkey’s third-largest city a viable option, while quick flights to Istanbul mean you can enjoy the attractions of the capital if you’re in town for longer.
The city of Harput is only 40 kilometres away from Elazig, meaning a day trip is definitely possible. Attractions here include Harput Kalesi, Harput Castle, magnificent mosques including the Ulu Camii and Aga Camii. There are also numerous churches in the city, with some dating back centuries. The Church of the Holy Mother Mary should be high on your list of must-visit landmarks, with awe-inspiring architecture and a unique setting providing a perfect photo opportunity.
If you’re driving to Harput, make sure you also schedule in some time for a trip to Buzluk Magarasi. Only 6 kilometres from the city, the detour needn’t interfere with your schedule. A little further away is the Keban dam at the upper Euphrates, a modern marvel that will bowl over technology fans. The dam is the highest of its kind in the Middle East with an elevation of 210 metres.