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Isparta


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    LAVENDER

    Elegant looking long-stemmed lavenders beautifully adorn anywhere they grow. A small village in the western Isparta city is now a eco-tourism destination with its lavender fields that have also become a source of income for villagers, notably women.

    The production of essential oil from lavender is a significant source of revenue in Turkey, where lavender gardens boast lively purple colors, creating a distinctive opportunity in eco-tourism. For around 50 years, lavender production has been available in the Kuyucak Village of the Keçiborlu district of Isparta province, making up more than half of lavender production in Turkey.

    ISPARTA

    A city in southwestern Turkey; administrative center of Isparta Vilayet. Population, 51,000 (1970). A railroad station and a trading center for the surrounding agricultural region (grain, oil-producing crops, grapes). Textile manufacture and production of rose oil are also found in Isparta. Sulfur is mined in the region. Isparta is one of the major centers of rug weaving.

    Endearingly nicknamed the Rose City, Isparta ranks among the world’s biggest growers of the renowned Damascena rose, and exports rose oil all around the globe. Eco-friendly British brand Lush are buyers, and the rosewater is shipped out to the grand mosque at Mecca. With a 200-year history of rose oil distillation, harvest time, in May/June, in Isparta is more than just a boost to the economy (a mere 1kg of rose oil retails for around €8000, making it a profitable venture). It’s also a time of celebration for the villagers’ featuring a two-day Isparta Rose Festival, and a plethora of home-made rose marmalades, ice creams and cosmetics hit the markets.

    Tours are available for the lavender harvest (July/Aug) and the chamomile harvest (April/May).

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