Since its introduction hundreds of years ago, coffee has taken a prominent role in Turkish social life, leading to the creation of numerous coffee houses that remain an integral part of the community today. Even giant global coffee chains have had to adapt their range and admit that the distinctive local style coffee deserves a place on their Turkish menu. On this exclusive National Geographic Day Tour, you will discover the history and cultural significance of coffee, or "kahve", in Turkey.
Your National Geographic-trained guide will take you to see behind the scenes of Istanbul's most prestigious gourmet institutions. First, pay a visit to Karakoy Gulluoglu, a renowned baklava producer. Here, you'll learn the history of baklava and sample a selection of these deliciously sweet, flaky pastries, paired with Turkish tea. At Ali Muhiddin Hacı Bekir Lokumları, step into a shop that has stood for centuries to find out how Turkish Delight is made and try some of these celebrated sweet treats.
No Turkish coffee tour would be complete without a stop at Kurukahveci Mehmet Efendi, the premier Turkish coffee brand since 1871. Here, you'll see first-hand how the beans are sourced, roasted and brewed the Turkish way, following deep-rooted, traditional rituals. You’ll see locals popping in for freshly ground coffee, and enjoy a cup or two yourself. Adding a touch of local flair, a fortune teller will read your coffee cups - another cherished custom connected to Turkish coffee culture.