Holiday in Turkey in December
Have you never seen the snow-covered mountains of Anatolia? Come to the Land of Four Seas in early winter! We tell you about the weather in Turkey in December 2022, tour prices and tourist reviews. Find out where best to vacation and what to do during your winter vacation.
Weather in Turkey in December
In the first month of winter, the weather in Turkey is very mild. There are no slush, large drifts and severe frosts, to which the Russians are so accustomed. At the popular Mediterranean resorts snow is a rarity.
The air temperature in Turkey in December differs in different parts of the country. In the center and the north is much colder than in the south. Even in early winter, Antalya and Kemer delight tourists with green grass lawns and foliage. True, in the coastal parks do not see flowers, and the leaves on many trees turn yellow.
|Resort||air temperature during the day||water temperature||Sunny days|
|Antalya and Kemer||+14||+19,7||19|
|Side and Belek||+15,5||+19,8||19|
The weather in Turkey in December is quite changeable. From time to time the sun is covered by thick clouds. Despite the fact that during the daytime it is warm, at nights the thermometer drops to +5. +10°С.
Interestingly, in cold months the sea is always warmer than the air. The water temperature in Turkey in December does not exceed +19.8 ° C, and in the Aegean Sea, it is even lower by 2-3 ° C. The coast is often stormy, and no one swims.
In the cold wind is easy to catch a cold, so for walks along the coast and trips to excursions recommend dressing warmer. During a holiday in Turkey in December 2022 will be useful sweater, windproof jacket with a hood, umbrella and waterproof shoes.
Fans of alpine skiing and snowboarding should be aware of the weather in December 2022 in winter resorts in Turkey. With the start of winter, the sporting season is just beginning. In the ski centers, the temperature during the day stays at 0. -1 ° C, and at night the thermometer drops to -12 ° C. These are very good conditions for skiing!
A nice video about rest in winter in Turkey
Where to have a rest in December
Istanbul. The city has a rich history, so here go lovers of culture and architecture. Istanbul has many beautiful squares, pedestrian promenades, palaces, temples, mosques and colorful bazaars. Explore our guide to Istanbul.
Seaside Resorts. During the winter months, the beach season is closed, and most beachfront hotels don’t welcome tourists until spring. However, the large hotels are open all year round. Especially popular are the comfortable 5* hotels, which have heated pools. Check out our selection of hotels with a heated pool. Most tourists choose for a holiday in Turkey in December the warm resorts of the Turkish Riviera – Antalya, Alanya and Side. There life does not stop even in winter, so you will find a lot of entertainment: tourist attractions, zoos, aquariums, shopping malls and interesting museums. Read also about all-inclusive holidays in Turkey.
Ski resorts. At the beginning of winter, Turkish winter recreation centers open the season. They are located at altitudes of 1700-3000 m in the green mountains. In December, there is enough snow on the slopes for skiing. The most developed ski resorts Uludag and Palandoken are in high demand among tourists, especially families with children.
Blue Mosque in Istanbul. This city is pleasant to visit at any time!
How to choose a hotel
Our picks and reviews will help you choose a great hotel for your holiday in Turkey:
Search for discounted hotels on Rumguru service – it will compare the price in different booking systems and find the best one. Apartments or villas are convenient and safe to rent on Bookings. See also our tips: How to learn how to book hotels cheaper.
Tour Prices to Turkey in December 2022
Because of the cool weather in December, not as many vacationers go to Turkey as in late spring, summer or early fall. For this reason, ticket prices are much lower than during the peak season. This also applies to expensive and prestigious hotels! So in winter you can afford more for less. Learn how to choose a good trip to Turkey.
We advise to look for bargain tours on the services of Level.Travel and Travelata – they will find the best deals among different tour operators. Want to save money? Check out 7 ways to buy a tour cheaper.
Current prices for tours in Turkey in 2022:
Antalya. Photo: bortescristian / flickr.com / CC BY 2.0 license
What to do on vacation in Turkey in December
Idle things to do will sooner or later get bored. So what can you do on vacation?
Excursions. During a holiday in Turkey in December, we recommend to see the Turkish sights. Bus trips are organized from all cities and seaside resorts. The most popular among holidaymakers are excursions to Pamukkale and Cappadocia. Learn what to see in Antalya.
Shopping. The beginning of winter is a great time to visit outlet stores, boutiques and famous Turkish bazaars. Visit the Istanbul Grand Bazaar, a huge market that covers 66 streets of the city. Visit the Antalya Central Market, Kemer Textile Market or the Alanya Oriental Bazaar. Everywhere tourists are offered beautiful rugs, ceramics and tea sets. While vacationing in Turkey in December, we recommend you to stock up on Turkish souvenirs: fragrant soap, rose water, coffee jesters, spices, spices and delicious oriental sweets.
Wellness. Combine your rest with relaxing procedures in SPA salons, revitalizing massage and visits to the famous Turkish hamams.
Festivals. In mid-December, the city of Konya in central Anatolia hosts the week-long Mevlana Festival, which is dedicated to the medieval poet Rumi. Attend the colorful festival and watch the original spinning dervish dance! And the city of Gaziantep in the south pleases locals and tourists in December with the cheerful Golden Pistachio Festival.
Pamukkale. Photo: virtualwayfarer / flickr.com / CC BY-NC 2.0 license. Cappadocia in winter. Photo: LoggaWiggler / pixabay.com.
Holiday in Turkey in December 2022 – weather, reviews, prices
Still, Turkey can not be called a classic winter destination. The climate in the country is subtropical: in winter it is quite cool and rainy.
But if we are considering a trip in the off-season, then December is the most suitable month for this case. Weather in Turkey in December is mostly sunny, rainfall is not more than 1-2 times a week.
Sometimes, of course, something out of the ordinary happens: in December 2019, both the Aegean and the Mediterranean coast were hit by a heavy downpour. The kind that flooded Marmaris.
I don’t know a single city/village/resort in Turkey that didn’t have them – cats!
Water and air temperature in Turkey
The weather during the vacations depends very much on the choice of resort. The warmest in the Alanya area, towards the Aegean Sea (Fethiye, Marmaris) – cooler. Istanbul is the coldest (brr, already at the end of November we wore hats and still freezing).
Air and water temperature in Turkey in December:
|Air temperature, °C||Air temperature, °C|
Due to the fact that the water temperature in Turkey in December is high, the coast is also relatively warm. However, because the winds often blow and the sea is stormy, you can hardly swim, even if +20°C seems quite acceptable. In general, you can’t count on a beach vacation Tell us where to go
Холодно? Вот здесь >> We tell you where you can rush in winter to warm up without reservations.
However, some of our fellow citizens, when asked if you can bathe in December, answer positively. Their hardened by the harsh Russian summer at plus 15 ° C their bodies fearlessly furrow the winter Mediterranean Sea. But this holiday in Turkey in December is not suitable for everyone. Most people prefer to soak up the sunny days from the coast.
Prices for tours in Turkey in December – 2022
Arrived at the airport of Antalya, where the bus already drove to the hotel
So, Turkey in December 2022 can be very, very inexpensive. And to find that “inexpensive”, I book tours online-aggregators: they show trips from all tour operators, from the cheapest to the most expensive. Plus the transparency – I see that the services show the price directly from the tour operator and ONLY to open hotels:
Tour prices are in many ways the main argument for winter destination travel. Turkey in early December is 2 times cheaper compared to spring/summer/autumn! But there is a minus: in winter the charter flight program from the regions is greatly reduced or even goes out of schedule.
Minimum tour to Turkey in December for 7 days for two people costs from 45 000 rubles (departure from Moscow, all inclusive).
The cost of tours to hotels with high ratings (according to tourists) – from 50 000 rubles (a week for 2 adults). For 10 days a similar tour for two people – from 60 000 rubles.
Cheap rest in Turkey in December is possible with children. The cost of an all-inclusive tour for three people (father with mother and child) – from 50 000 rubles.
You can celebrate New Year in Turkey for 65 000 rubles (if depart between December 27 and 31).
In January, the same “New Year’s” tour becomes cheaper! You can fly out already on the 3rd of January for 55 000 rubles. Eat traditional salads at home, and off we go
Turkish resorts – where to vacation in December?
Sitting in a cafe Coffeetopia Eminönü in Istanbul / Walking on the beach in Side
Well, the weather is whispering (well, almost), the prices are not expensive – we have to go! Where to go in Turkey in December? Here is a brief review of resorts. *Winter adds its own characteristics – some resorts that are popular in summer, go into hibernation, and hotels are closed.
View of Alanya from the observation point (we took a cable car up).
The main mecca of Russian tourists – Antalya – and in the off-season is lively. You can stay in one of the hotels around the city (villages), and go to the center if the beach and seascapes are bored.
At this time of the year in Turkey sales, you can have a very profitable bargain. And the historical part of the city is often undeservedly deprived of attention, and there is really something to see!
An important point: thanks to its proximity to the airport, its impressive size and the fact that Antalya is also a port, life in the city does not stop with the onset of winter, as happens with other Turkish resorts.
People go to Belek for a 5-star vacation and get it. The pride of the resort:
- Eucalyptus forests all around,
- high-class service,
- and amusement park The Land of Legends (part with rides in winter).
Many hotels, quite expensive in other months, in November and December do discounts. Relax in a hotel with SPA and other pleasures of Turkish all-inclusive can be half cheaper.
The best place to go in the low season, in my personal opinion. No crowds, no heat, lots of fruit, somewhere to go. By Catholic Christmas it can be crowded: Europeans have vacations and Istanbul has sales.
Where else can I go in Turkey in December and January?
You have to keep in mind that many of Turkey’s summer resorts look pretty dreary in winter. But if you have a quiet and measured relaxation in a deserted area, you can go to any working hotel on the Mediterranean coast (it is warmer). Fethiye has fewer winds due to the mountains that surround the city. Alanya has the highest daytime air temperatures.
The best hotels in Turkey – TOP 8
When booking a hotel in Turkey in December, pay attention to the availability of such benefits of civilization as heating or air conditioning (at worst). Nighttime temperatures range between +5 ° C … +7 ° C, without extra heating the rooms will be fresh!
The sea in Turkey in December is hardly suitable for swimming, but who would regret it if you can stay in a hotel with a spa, heated pools (a complete list, look for this article) and other amenities at a price close to the summer “three-star”?
Year-round hotels in Turkey – our selection of the best (according to tourists):
- 5* Sealife Family Resort Hotel – a place with a high rating from guests, a good level of service. In all other respects, the hotel also meets the standards of quality recreation. Located within the city, in the evening there is where to walk. And in December and not only in the evening. The tour costs from 99 000 roubles
- 5* Concorde De Luxe Resort – many vacationers note the beautiful view from the window. Other joys of 5 stars attached. Price of the tour – from 120 000 rubles
- 4 * Grand Park Lara – Okatannaya winter concept. There is a heated swimming pool (outdoor), hamam, sauna, steam room. Quick service. Children’s animation at the level. Adult entertainment program from 21:00 to 23:00. Price of the tour – from 100 000 rubles
- 5 * Alva Donna Exclusive – popular for the winter hotel, because it is one of those rare options, where there is a heated outdoor pool, almost like the Thermae! Tour price – from 125 000 rubles
- 5* Rixos Premium Belek – in the winter season there is a heated pool, a new (opened in spring 2019) children’s mini club. Good cuisine. Large area for walks. The price of the tour – from 160 000 rubles
- 5* Gloria Serenity Resort – not just a 5* hotel, but a vip-class. Vse shikaaarno, but the cost even in winter is not small. The price of the tour – from 140 000 rubles.
In the daytime in Istanbul can be quite warm, but in the evening sharply cold
- 4 * Amethyst Hotel Istanbul – in the center, within walking distance to all the iconic places of the city, with a high level of service, hammam, massage and delicious food. Price per night – from $75 (5,400 rubles)
- 4* Hotel Sapphire Istanbul is also in the center (Sultanahmet). The hotel is very atmospheric: the interior is in the Ottoman style. The place is recommended by regulars in Istanbul, finding negative reviews is not an easy task (I was not able to). Price per night – from $33 (2400 rubles)
Add airfare to Istanbul (Aviasales offers roundtrip from Moscow in December for 200,000 rubles) and enjoy a trip for ≈60,000 rubles.
Entertainment in Turkey – what to do in December?
Our friend (with whom we had a rest) went on a trip to Cappadocia – she liked it very much.
What to do in Turkey in December? Almost more options than in summer.
Relax in the hotel – in their desire to get winter tourists Turkish five-star hotels try to surpass themselves! Spa areas, heated pools and water parks, evening programs, hammams, massages … It is possible not to leave the hotel during the vacation!
✓ What to do if sitting in one place for the whole vacation is not for you? Make a dense program of excursions.
There are ready-made excursions at each resort. The country is rich in natural and historical attractions. You can order a tour in advance through the Internet (often cheaper) or take it on the spot.
➢ Istanbul: journey along the Golden Horn and the Bosphorus. See the city from the water and listen to its history in Russian. Price €25 per person
➢ Antalya: through the ancient streets to the heart of Antalya. Individual guided tour by a “local” guide in Russian. And get to know the history, and learn about all the secret “hot spot”. Price – €98 for a group of 1-4 people.
➢ Belek: from Belek to Pamukkale. Visit thermal springs and ancient monuments. Price – €43 per person
Travelling by car is popular at this time of year among independent tourists. By renting a car (from $25 per day) you can travel around much of the country. The lack of crowds and heat creates quite a different impression of Turkey from the summer. Book a car in advance on Localrent (our Russian car rental service in Turkey).
What about entertainment in Turkey in the New Year – 2023?
Ski resorts in Turkey
In addition to the standard “beach” set, adapted for winter, in Turkey you can go skiing or snowboarding.
Advanced “kiting” is not possible here, the tracks are rather designed for beginners, but the snowy peaks and the sun, combined with the mountain air and accommodation in a hotel “all inclusive” Turkish (free alcohol directly to the track) – in any case, a win-win option.
Ski resorts in Turkey:
Uludag is most conveniently located relative to Istanbul – 2-3 hours by car. Palandoken is a fairly new resort, the most interesting in terms of skiing.
Organizing a trip is not as difficult as it seems. About airline tickets already mentioned – they are looking for an aggregator Aviasales (it makes sense to fly to Istanbul, and from there to your destination), hotels with payment by Russian card – on the service Ostrovok. Rental equipment is available at each resort.
In another article, we tell you about winter Turkey from all sides – and the sea resorts, and ski resorts, and Istanbul. Interested?
Tourist reviews of Turkey in December
Jogging along the promenade
Reviews about Turkey in December are conventionally divided into “yuck, what to do there, especially in winter” VS “how cool everything is, especially in winter!”. As you might guess, it’s not even about Turkey itself, but the eternal argument – to each his own. Turkish winter vacations have their pros and cons.
Pros and cons.
|Why yes?||Why not?|
|✓ The cost of tours – Turkey and in late December will cost at least 2 times cheaper compared to the season. ✓ Comfortable sightseeing vacation – i.e. the opportunity to visit places of interest without the crowds of tourists, heat. ✓ Shopping – on a side note, prices in Turkey on sales ensure an influx of tourists from all over Europe.||✓ Water in Turkey in December is suitable for swimming only very hardened tourists. ✓ On cloudy rainy days in the hotel corridors (even five-star) can be damp and cold – there is no central heating here. ✓ No summer action, the vacation may seem a bit “pensioner”.|
Our blog from Istanbul.
Okay Howtrip, what other vacation options for December, but warmer?
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