April is traditionally tulip time in Turkey’s largest city. The International Istanbul Tulip Festival, which has become one of the symbols of Istanbul and a well-known tradition, has started on April 1 and will continue until the end of this month.
Every April since 2006, the Turkish government plants millions of tulips in Istanbul’s parks, avenues -- anywhere they can find an open ground!
This year, the estimated number of planted tulips is a whopping 30 million!
The result is a glorious spring flower festival with brilliant splashes of color everywhere the eye can see.
Tulip is one of Istanbul's traditional symbols. During the Ottoman Empire tulips were often worn in turbans. In Arabic letters lale has the same letters as Allah, and tulips were considered a holy symbol.
Tulips are commonly found in the motifs on Turkish ceramics. During April, you can spot these glorious flowers everywhere in Istanbul.
But for a real tulip treat and the International Istanbul Tulip Festival, you have to head to EmirganPark. It is one of the largest public parks in Istanbul and has several tulip gardens.
More than 270 varieties of tulips fill the city each spring -- red, purple, white, pink and countless more turn the town into a realm of colours.
The tulip buds are mainly grown in Çumra, a town of Konya, a city in the Central Anatolia Region of Turkey, but were also grown by villagers of Silivri, Çatalca, ?ile, Pamukova, and Geyve.