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 Oct 28 2021

Cumhuriyet Bayramı and Çay as a Fundamental Part of the Turkish Hospitality

Cumhuriyet Bayramı (Republic Day) is the national day of Turkey, celebrated every year on October 29. 
On this day in 1923, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk declared that Turkey was henceforth a republic and its official name was Türkiye Cumhuriyeti ("the Republic of Turkey").

The official holiday lasts 35 hours, starting each year at 1:00 pm on the day before. Many people in Turkey celebrate Republic Day by attending performances like theater sketches, poetry readings, or traditional Turkish dances, and by participating in traditional processions with flags and musical bands. Many people also lay wreaths to the numerous Atatürk monuments or visit Anıtkabir, Atatürk's mausoleum in Ankara, the Turkish Capital. In the evening, there are magnificent fireworks all over the country, especially over the Bosphorus in Istanbul.

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Many people attend the official celebrations, visit Atatürk's Mausoleum in Ankara, or just watch the fireworks throughout the country.
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Tuğamiral Mehmet Baybars Küçükatay is Deputy Chief of Staff in the Joint Support and Enabling Command (JSEC), responsible for the Support Directorate. Before he moved to Ulm with his family, they lived in Gölcük, an industrialized seaport in the Marmara Sea, home to the main Turkish naval base and therefore the heart of the Turkish Navy. "It's not a touristic place," explains the Admiral, smiling, "but it's a place where I made good friends over the years. I very much enjoyed sitting on the harbor with a cup of Çay (Turkish tea) and watch the Marmara Sea."

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Tuğamiral Mehmet Baybars Küçükatay very much enjoyed sitting at the harbor of his hometown Gölcük, with a cup of Çay (Turkish tea), watching the Marmara Sea.
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Did you know Turkey has the highest tea consumption in the world?

Çay is an important part of Turkish culture, and is the most commonly consumed hot drink, despite the country's long history of coffee consumption. Offering tea to guests is a fundamental part of the legendary Turkish hospitality. Turkey has the highest per capita tea consumption in the world, at 3.5kg per person per year, or almost four glasses a day, followed by the United Kingdom (2.1 kg). Turkish tea is robust, and they serve it in small tulip-shaped glasses.

It is hard to imagine breakfasts, social gatherings, business meetings, shopping in the Grand Bazaar, or ferry rides across the Bosphorus without the presence of tea. With tea servers in streets, shopping malls, and parks shouting, "ÇAY!" (chai) the beverage is always within shouting distance.

Story by Joint Support and Enabling Command

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Many people in Turkey celebrate Republic Day by attending performances like theater sketches, poetry readings, or traditional Turkish dances, and by participating in traditional processions with flags and musical bands.
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Mustafa Kemal Atatürk declared the Republic of Turkey on October 29, 1923. He was elected as the first president and is recognized as the founder of modern Turkey.
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Çay is an important part of Turkish culture, and is the most commonly consumed hot drink, despite the country's long history of coffee consumption. Offering tea to guests is a fundamental part of the legendary Turkish hospitality.

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