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European (Holiday) Championships: Italy vs Turkey

The start of football’s Euro 2020 is almost upon us, and what better way to celebrate such a thing than to add our own little holiday twist to it. Throughout the tournament, we will be picking out fixtures and ranking the two competing nations not on their footballing ability, but on their holiday factor!

The first clash of the competition is a tasty affair between Italy and Turkey in Rome, and whilst the two countries get set to battle it out on the pitch in the Italian capital, we saw it as a great chance to kick off our European (Holiday) Championships blog feature, pitting these two fantastic holiday hotspots against each other to see which one comes out on top.

We’ve split this feature into five sections; weather, cuisine, things to do, price and distance from the UK, but which nation will grab the glory?

Disclaimer: This guide is intended for inspiration. Please always check the UK government’s latest advice for individual destinations both on these shores and overseas and travelling in general before attempting to do so and also make sure you are aware of local safety guidelines and/or restrictions when visiting different countries.

Weather

Italy: Pretty toasty all year round, temperatures really begin to soar during the summer months when shorts and sun cream will certainly be needed, as well as a handy helping of gelato (purely to cool you down, of course!). You can expect the weather to be above 30 degrees over the peak holiday period which is great if you’re relaxing on one of the country’s beaches, but not perhaps if you’re looking to explore a stunning, historical city.

Turkey: Perfectly located for a warm summer getaway, there’s a reason they say it’s always roasting in Turkey! Temperatures get well into the mid-30s during the main holiday season in most parts of the country, and even out of that time it’s still pretty warm. Antalya, Izmir and Dalaman are just some of the resorts Brits love to visit for a scorching hot Turkish trip.

Winner: A close one, but Turkey just gets it!

Score so far: Italy 0-1 Turkey



Cuisine

Italy: Italian food is some of the most popular throughout the world – and it’s not hard to understand why! Pizza, pasta, lasagne & spaghetti can be found in most restaurants anywhere you travel, but there’s no better place to sample some traditional food originating from the country than actually in Italy itself. Wine is also a very common mealtime companion to wash down any delicious dinner – just make sure you save room for some aforementioned gelato or tasty tiramisu.

Turkey: With an array of incredible all inclusive resorts, you’ll certainly never be left to feel hungry during a trip to Turkey. Many of which cater for the different nationalities that regularly visit the country, but make sure to try some traditional Turkish food such as a kebab or pide (Turkey’s take on pizza) for your savory option, and kadayif and kunefe to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Winner: Italian food is revered all over the world, which is why it gets the nod here!

Score so far: Italy 1-1 Turkey


Things to do

Italy: There really is no end of things to both see and do during a break to Italy. Rome is a standout when it comes to exploring a classy European city, but don’t discount the likes of Milan, Florence and Naples for a similarly fascinating weekend getaway. Museums and religious sites are all popular amongst tourists, as too are the beaches of the Amalfi Coast under the sublime sunshine.

Turkey: Many brits enjoy trips to Turkey to stay in one of the amazing all inclusive resorts, lots of which are great for families and can include things like on-site water parks and other fantastic services and facilities. There are also several historical sites within the country too, with Istanbul a common holiday spot for the more adventurous type of traveller.

Winner: It has to be Italy, who have come from one down to take the lead at the midway point!

Score so far: Italy 2-1 Turkey



Price

Italy: Because of the popularity of particularly Italian city breaks amongst holidaymakers, many travellers can fall into the so-called tourist traps and pay extra for food, drinks and other activities in certain areas. Dreamy breaks to the likes of Sorrento on the coast are also typically slightly more expensive than other beach breaks across Europe – the trick is to shop around and find the best deal.

Turkey: Value for money is almost guaranteed during all inclusive holidays, and that’s generally the most common type of trip enjoyed by British holidaymakers in Turkey. There are an array of stunning 5* resorts that welcome travellers year upon year, and during times when visitors do venture out to explore the local area, they’re often met with fair prices in shops and stalls.

Winner: Turkey wins this one to level things up as we head into the final section!

Score so far: Italy 2-2 Turkey



Distance from the UK

Italy: Most parts of Italy can be reached within two hours or so from the UK, which makes it an ideal destination for a short break away. Not only that, many of the top airlines typically offer a wide range of flight date and times, meaning the country is very easily accessible for holidaymakers.

Turkey: Slightly further away from the UK when compared with Italy, you’re looking at a three-to-four hour flight time to Turkey in general. As it is one of the more popular beach holiday spots for British tourists however, you can expect a large variety of flights to choose from during normal times.

Winner: Close again but it has to be Italy, who win the first fixture in our European (Holiday) Championships by a nose!

Final Score: Italy 3-2 Turkey



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