Setur Marina Kusadasi

What’s Turkey like in winter – part one

Is it cold in Turkey in winter? The short answer is yes. There is a longer answer, so please read on.

Most people are shocked by their first winter in Turkey, they have a moved to a country they probably knew in summer when it melts or in spring when it blooms or in autumn when the Indian summer runs and runs and runs on through a glowing October into sunlit November. January can be rather a surprise after all that heat. Particularly as the kind of houses most expats buy aren’t really designed for winter living and have all the insulation properties of a wet paper bag and the kind of wide open plan living layout that is a horror to heat in winter.

Yes it can get flipping cold in Turkey; last year my swimming pool had a skim of ice on it five times, two weeks ago my geraniums froze in a sudden frost and are now black and drooping and I’ll have to cut them back and my bougainvillea, that had bravely bloomed on into January, now has bleached papery blossoms and curled crispy leaves as the wind chill hit it hard.

But, and there is a but, our winters are short and those cold days are tempered with warm sunny spring type spells that remind you why you live here and you throw open the windows to let the heat in and you get out and about and do things and still enjoy it all, from valley walks to winter diving to keeping the garden under control.

I like having seasons, I find it stimulating, because every season brings something new and special and I think living with that naturally fluctuating temperature is actually good for you. If the cold does actually penetrate our thick stone walls then I put another jumper on and at night I snuggle down under my duvet with my best friend – the good old fashioned hot water bottle! It’s sort of comforting.

If you are interested in scuba diving there are more pictures of our winter diving here – Winter Diving in Kusadasi